Posted in BeachBody, benefits of exercise, Carpe Diem, Celebration, discipline, exercise, Freedom, goals, Gratitude, Healing, Healthy Eating, Humor, Impossible, laziness, Pain, Passion, Uncategorized

In which I run a marathon and feel disappointed…

LastBurst

This was me after 26.2 miles. Putting that last burst of speed on so I could cross the finish line just ahead of my sister. Sorry, Laura. I really did have to. Not for the competition, but because every race I’ve run ends like that and I can’t stop my feet from moving faster.

Although the competition part of it is DEFINITELY what kept me running the whole race. Intervals. PAH. What’s an interval? We ran a darn good race and it only took us 5 hours. Every time I wanted to slow down, I looked at my sister and she kept running. So I did too.

At the end of the race, I cried. Just like I said I would. It wasn’t big, fat, ugly tears that blotched my cheeks and snot dripping down my nose kind of a cry. It was more like, heaving, gasping, sobs without tears because all the salt was on the outside of my body dried as sweat and I had no more water to shed.

Later, I walked like a 90 year old woman with arthritis and massive bunions. Took a shower and just about cursed when the water first hit those chafed areas on my back and between my legs and breasts. Bit back another curse when I tried the stairs for the first time after arriving home.

Then I took some Recharge from Beachbody, went to sleep, and woke up with a pleasant, aching sensation all over my body.

The stairs still hurt like the dickens, but I felt an overwhelming wave of disappointment.

Not at running the race and finishing a little later than I wanted. It was only 5 minutes, no big deal, and I didn’t have a PR time to beat. This time.

No. It was the sensation that I’d somehow been shorted on the whole marathon experience. Why?

Because aside from the stairs, I wasn’t hurting enough to make excuses for the next two weeks. I didn’t have a reason to be lazy because my body felt fabulous, stairs notwithstanding.

Yes, this disappointment just goes to prove that I am something of a masochist. And lazy. Let’s not forget that one.

I ran 26.2 miles for goodness sake. The masochist in me protested that I had a right to be lazy and feel horrendous pain for a little while longer. The lazy in me wanted to curl up and pretend I HADN’T just told half my family and friends that I had no excuse to be lazy, so I could actually pretend I had an excuse to be lazy.

I mean, not even a toenail fell off. Aside from the stairs and the slight chafing parts, I had no complaints. Did I mention the stairs?

Even that has gotten easier as I’ve continued moving and stretching. One week post-marathon and I feel like I never ran it at all.

I cannot decide whether that’s the best thing I could have ever hoped for or I should be pissed because I have to jump right back into life and not force everyone else to baby me.

Maybe it’s a little bit of both. I am going to go with the fantastical idea that I’m part Amazon woman and running is in my blood. It sounds a whole lot better than masochist.

Now, when’s the next marathon?

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Posted in Abundance, Age, BeachBody, benefits of exercise, Carpe Diem, discipline, Entrepreneur, exercise, faith, Freedom, goals, God, Healthy Eating, Hope, Humor, Impossible, laziness, life lessons, Obstacles, Pain, Passion, Possibilities, Spiritual disciplines, Transparency, Uncategorized, Why, Winning, Writing

In which I shed tears during corpse pose…

Last night, I did a Yoga session as part of my cross-training for the marathon in June. Before anyone asks, it’s not Grandma’s Marathon. ūüôā And yes, it’s my first.
 
Anyway, I tried the 30 minute X3 Yoga session with Tony Horton, thinking: “I’ve done yoga before. It’s 30 minutes. No problem.”
 
It’s not called X3 Yoga for nothing. By the end of it, I was sweating and praying just to get through the last few minutes alive. Apparently, there is a WHOLE new level of yoga, I’ve never experienced…until just then.
 
So I’m in the last pose, which is definitely my favorite one now. It’s basically a resting pose and it felt AMAZING.
 
But as I lay there, breathing and feeling the sweat and stretch of muscle groups I THOUGHT I had been adequately working out, I started crying.
 
My mantra throughout the workout was Psalm 18. At least the part that says,
 
“The God who arms me with strength
And makes my way blameless? He makes my feet like hinds’ feet,
And sets me upon my high places. He trains my hands for battle,
So that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.”

Usually my workouts don’t make me cry. I mean, I’ve shed tears of joy when I crossed the finish line after a half marathon, but no matter how painful or crazy hard they are, I don’t usually bawl like a baby. So I had to wonder why.

I’m lying on a yoga mat, trembling like a newborn baby, and crying.

It hit me then. Because that Yoga session reminded me once again of my WHY. My balance sucked, my joints protested every move like I was making them do something they had no desire to do, and my resting pose was the only “successful” pose I’d done the whole 30 minutes.

I hate the thought of aging. The first time I found a silver hair, I was in my early twenties and I cried, after plucking it out and throwing it away. I’ve never had the best balance, but in college, I could do sit ups, push-ups, and a 4 mile run with a 40 pound rucksack on my back, wearing BDUs and combat boots. I even managed 5 pull ups in a row a few times.

After having kids, my abs didn’t support me anymore and my posture suffered. My tendons and ligaments loosened, which is natural and part of motherhood, but I’ve had hip and knee problems ever since.

One of my greatest fears is ending up in a nursing home bed, fighting bed sores, obesity, and a degenerative brain disease. NOT the way I want to exit this world.

Stories of 90 year old men and women who cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon, 50 year olds who can rock climb with only a rope and their two, muscled arms, 70 year olds who look like they’re 50 because they’ve eaten healthy and taken care of their bodies well. THOSE are the people I aspire to be as I age.

At one point, the fear paralyzed me into inaction. I figured it was inevitable, given my health history, genetics, and a host of other excuses I kept throwing up until I actually believed them to be true.

I may not EVER be able to hold a Tree Pose for longer than 30 seconds, but I for SURE won’t if I keep up that attitude.

Someone posted on my Facebook wall that they were so proud of me for sticking with my program and accomplishing my exercise goals. Then they ended it with a line that makes me sick to my stomach, no matter how many times I hear or see it:

I could NEVER do that.

That phrase makes me simultaneously want to strangle the person and vomit. Mostly because I’ve seen the results of those words on a person’s life and it’s ugly and heartbreaking and devastating.

We have ONE shot at this people. ONE shot to live a life that THRIVES and OVERCOMES and SUCCEEDS in whatever we do.

We don’t GET a second chance at life. We won’t all be Olympic Athletes or Marathon Runners or experts at Sayanasana.

Shyasana

Heck, as impressive as that pose is, I have NO desire to ever try it. I’ll leave it to Yoga enthusiasts with killer balance and a strong equilibrium.¬†‚ô•

But I don’t ever want to say I could NEVER do it.

What a horrifying word.

NEVER.

I’ll NEVER be healthy. I’ll NEVER get that scholarship. I’ll NEVER cross that finish line. I could NEVER be a mother. I will NEVER be a coach.

How limiting. How devastating. How utterly untrue.

The only time I can make that true is if I say it over and over and over again until I believe it. Which I have done. A lot more than I want to admit.

In my brief sojourn on this earth, I have seen the absolute LIMITS of the human capability. I have also seen what happens when someone BLASTS through those limits as if they never existed in the first place. And those are the people I want to strive to emulate. Not the person who publicly declared for the world to see (or at least my corner of the world anyway) that they had no desire to strive for what they deemed impossible.

So as I cried like a baby on my yoga mat, I realized the tears were because I was once again telling myself NEVER, when I should be telling myself,

WHY NOT?

Our culture is a culture of CANNOT and NEVER. What that really means is we’ve lost our focus, our WHY, our purpose. So we choose instead to see our limitations and not our possibilities. Because what good are possibilities if we have no purpose, no focus, no WHY?

I beat my body into submission, NOT because I have a sadistic need to feel pain. I do it because I REFUSE to be that obese, disease-ridden, aged beyond her years person in a hospital bed when I’m 90 years old.

No one needs to tell me my limitations. I already know them. They were my best friends for many years.

What I am determined to discover is how fast I can leave those limitations in the dust as I focus on THRIVING and SUCCEEDING.

The only NEVER I want to hear from my mouth is, “I will NEVER let my limitations define and devastate my possibilities.”

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Posted in Addiction, Declutter, discipline, Freedom, Home, Hope, Humor, Obstacles, Organization, Random, Reading, Telling Stories, Time Management, Transparency, Uncategorized, Winning, Writing

In which I minimize…to maximize…

Four bookcases. And still my book collection doesn’t quite fit the sagging shelves. If they had a Book Addicts Anonymous, I would be the first one at the meeting, chugging copious amounts of my own personally brewed “snob” coffee, analyzing the incoming addicts for their particular tastes, and introducing myself with all the intelligence and enthusiasm of a well-rounded reader.

Hi, I’m Sarah. And I LOVE books. I read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in 4 hours flat on my third wedding anniversary while ¬†my long-suffering husband indulged my addiction and went to sleep. I have ten newly-started books sitting on my bedside table and I will probably have them all finished by Labor Day. My earliest bed time this week was 1:30am and that was only because I had to get up for a training run at 5.

No joke.

Unfortunately, that’s not the only collection I’ve accumulated since I left college far behind and joined the ranks of stay-at-home moms everywhere. Not that a stay-at-home mom is necessarily always a hoarder. I think it might actually be genetic for me.

On my dad’s side.

My collections are scattered all over my house and I still have yet to learn the art of “Space for everything and everything in its space.”

So to name a few:

  1. Clothes that I will NEVER fit into again, not because I will never get back to my pre-baby weight, but because my body has naturally formed new curves since I’ve had my littles. By default, I won’t even look sexy in the clothes even if I manage to squeeze myself into them long enough to cut off oxygen supply to vital body parts.
  2. Papers: Seriously, I have papers from every one of my kid’s art projects, even if it was just ONE tiny little barely there yellow scribble from the 2 year old in the upper corner of a crumpled, ripped piece of printer paper. I keep telling myself I’m going to take pictures and store the digital files, but well…the stack is kind of intimidating and I’m a little afraid it’s going to transform into an artistic monster ready to snap off my fingers if I get too near.
  3. Kid’s clothes that went out of style when I was a little baby. I kept them for sentimental purposes without really thinking about the fact that they would never see the light of day again. Anyone want to teach me how to make a quilt from all the scraps of material I could get out of my “nostalgic” collection?
  4. Bed sheets. Yep. We got a massive collection in our 10+moves, mostly from family members who were foisting them on us to clear out their own clutter. And hey, we have beds, so why not? Problem is, they’ve aged so badly, the rips and tears are not big enough for toes and fingers to get tangled and we could probably cut them into dusting cloths, but that would mean we’d actually have to get nice, new sheets for our guest beds. Oh no.
  5. Single socks. Sock puppets anyone? I keep meaning to throw them out, but my husband started downsizing by replacing holey socks with the ones in the scrap bin. So we save a little on socks each year and heck, I can’t fault him for being efficient. Why I keep the kid’s socks is beyond me, because theirs NEVER match after they’ve been washed and folded the first time.

All this to say that in the midst of our moving and projects and weekends away this year, I have had little time to clean up my collections or manage them well. I trip over pieces of my collections in every room of our house and part of it is because we’re moving, but part of it is that I’ve gotten overwhelmed by all of our STUFF and I just quit caring. In my defense, it’s been a rough few weeks (which is when most of the clutter has accumulated) with sick babies, a school shooting, and moving/project delays.

SO:

The moral of the story is that my life is cluttered beyond belief. And today, I just HAD it. I’ve now got 5 large garbage bags full of my collections and a couple boxes full in the back of my van, ready to cart off to the nearest goodwill or half-way home in my area. My couch is once again clear of laundry and a small bit of my burden is lifted as I can now see more of the floors in my house.

However, the book collection stays.

I told you I was an addict…

reading-addiction

 

Posted in Celebration, discipline, Entrepreneur, exercise, Family, Freedom, Humor, Time Management, Uncategorized, Writing

In which I begin Spring Break…

It’s not actually a break, so I don’t know why they call it that. I mean, we get a week off of school, but who really gets a “break” when they have little children, are planning a move, building a business, and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle?

A break to me is just a different kind of school all together. We’re still learning and growing and moving forward, but we don’t have our heads in the textbook or our eyes glued to a history lesson on the computer screen.

The kids still make me five million art projects and leave the unused pieces all over the house. We still need to eat 3-5 square meals a day and I fully intend to insist upon physical education daily. Our house still needs to be cleaned, and our laundry done.

Break? Not so much. Besides, I don’t want a break from Spring. Bring on the warm, tee-shirt and shorts weather. Let the sun shine and the rain wash away the last of winter. Let me get a few good runs in for my marathon training. Let me take the kids to the park or have an impromptu picnic on the porch.

Let me FINALLY get a consistent Power Hour in for my business building every day.

I’ve decided I’m going to take this week as the gift it is. A chance to not focus on subjects like math and spelling and an opportunity to freely enjoy other areas of my life I’ve neglected while pursuing an education for my children.

Happy Spring…not-break.¬†‚ô•

Posted in Abundance, BeachBody, benefits of exercise, discipline, Entrepreneur, exercise, Family, Finances, Financial Peace, Freedom, goals, Gratitude, Home, Home Based Business, Humor, Joy, Time Management, Transparency, Uncategorized, Why, Writing

In which I compare and contrast…

Why I chose Beachbody over a Gym Membership:

  1. I get to work out with my own personal hunk. Yummy!12814267_10100981407354325_9104245845472910326_n
  2. I don’t have to pay for a daycare and have my kids bringing home a million and one new germs for us to experience.¬†funny-5-second-rule-germs-chip-crisp-ground-comic-pics
  3. MY equipment. MY rules. MY germs. ba609f62ee2809242613404935ff3961
  4. I don’t have to go out in the dead of winter to start my freezing cold car at 4:00 in the morning just to drive fifteen minutes to a gym where I workout for 30 minutes and drive home to shower.¬†Notime
  5. Challenge Groups. #nuffsaid
  6. I get to be my OWN coach. Which basically means I get pleasure from inflicting pain on myself. On the plus side, I can call a mean cadence during #22MinuteHardCorps.
  7. I can CIZE it UP and no one will laugh at my dance moves. dance_moves_3_xalext.gif
  8. Personalized meal plans and Shakeology at my fingertips.
  9. It’s a #Family affair.¬†IMG_4063
  10. I get paid to workout, inspire others, and BE the product.
Posted in Abundance, and Love, BeachBody, benefits of exercise, Celebration, Corny Jokes, Dinner Time Entertainment, discipline, exercise, faith, Faith, Hope, and Love, Family, God, Gratitude, Healing, Healthy Eating, Home, Hope, Humor, Joy, lessons, life lessons, Love, Marriage and Family, Possibilities, prayer, soul surgery, Spiritual disciplines, spiritual training, Telling Stories, Transparency, Uncategorized, Winning, Writing

In which my attitude gives me altitude…

This week was really rough.

And it’s only Monday. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say, this week will continue to be rough. Just the facts and I’ll tell you why.

All three of our kiddos succumbed to (DUN, DUN, DUN) the winter ick. That hacky, barky cough (no not whooping, the other one) where it sounds miserable and you want to cry every time your two year old (or five year old, or seven year old) can’t catch a breath between bouts. I thought we’d make it all the way through the cold season without a, well, cold.

No such luck. Now the prayers have shifted to fast healing, and keep it away from me and Jake. The essential oils are on double overtime and we’re cleaning every surface multiple times a day. Which reminds me, I have to go over the bathroom door knobs again. And recheck the hubby’s cleaning job in the boy’s room tomorrow morning. It still smells like ICK.

Anyway, I’ve got like seven¬†hours of solid sleep on the last 48 hours and that might be a little generous.

Two months ago, this would send me into a crazy tailspin of emotional outbursts and meltdowns. I would leave my family in a trail of wounds on the battlefield of my angry rants while I tried to come down off the ledge without slipping and falling.

This year started out with the theme of Redemption. Restoration. Repentance. I could go through the thesaurus and find more, but we’ll go with the three R’s. It’s catchier. I’ve struggled for years with a negative worldview. Everything was colored by a glass half empty (or all the way empty on some days) perspective and even after my choice to follow Christ, that perspective didn’t seem to leave. I felt burdened, heavy with the weight of my constant failures and successes just seemed to be little bumps in the road instead of the road itself. I do a “good” job of living as if I don’t believe the power of God in my life and the power to change my attitude.

Except that Restoration, Redemption, Repentance, ALL have a POSITIVE view of the world. They are words resounding with the idea that THIS is NOT all there is. That life offers SO much more and it doesn’t end six feet under ground so what’s the point.

The three R’s say that hope is NOT some wispy phantom just out of reach, but present, purposeful, and completely possible.

Apparently, I like alliteration.

So two months ago, I would have freaked out when the kids refused to eat the meal I had slaved over and the toddler threw up ALL over me, the floor, his Powoh, the blankets, and. Let’s just say there wasn’t much room space he DIDN’T manage to cover. I would have lost it when the kids, instead of being helpful, decided that was the perfect time for 20 questions, only their version is more like 1,579 questions plus 1 more. I would have reacted, no second thoughts, regretting the explosion of broken, bleeding hearts after Mount Sarah erupted.

I’m not taking ANY credit tonight, because what DID happen, had NOTHING to do with me. I LAUGHED when I tasted the food and realized exactly WHY the kids weren’t eating it. My husband decided to brave through the artery clogging, ten-times-worse-than-a-salt-block flavoring and even gave me props for the colorful meal. I called his bluff when I gagged and hacked my way through the fish taco, promptly downing three large glasses of water to allow the salt, smoother passage through my digestive tract.

I’m going to regret that fish taco tomorrow. I can FEEL my eye sockets swell up and I’m pretty sure I just went back up three bra sizes. (Why do I ALWAYS gain weight in the face and chest first?)

#22MinuteHardCorps here I come. I don’t care if it’s 9 0’clock at night, I’m not going to die of a heart attack in my sleep.

We ate bananas and peanut butter sandwiches to balance our bodies on a cellular level again.

Which brings me to my son’s projectile vomiting episode right during the bedtime routine. I only got a little frustrated when my husband didn’t move at MY speed to fix all of our world problems. I calmed down pretty fast, which doesn’t ever happen for me.

And the 1,579 questions game? I calmly, but firmly informed them the Mommy textbook was closed for the evening and packed them off to bed…once I got the toddler and myself hosed down in calming bubble bath-laden water. He held my hand the entire time and managed to look about as pitiful as a toddler can look, when they are trying to milk the pity as much as possible. Oh, I’m not denying he is sick. I’m just saying, he takes the sympathy play to a WHOLE new level.

If it had been ONE of those situations two months ago, I would have blown a gasket. And humanly speaking, I came close a few times tonight to losing my cool and letting it all explode.

I could go into all the natural reasons WHY my attitude has made an altitude adjustment. Good exercise, healthy eating, relationship building…

However…

Supernaturally speaking, SOMEONE had my back. And this tired momma is MORE grateful that you all know.

Now, I’m going to sweat it out for 22 minutes and hit the sack for my nightly ration of two blissful hours of sleep before the interruptions start. I never knew a king sized bed could be so small before I had kids.

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Dinner tonight was a real Gag! No joke.

 

Posted in Abundance, BeachBody, benefits of exercise, discipline, exercise, Freedom, goals, Healthy Eating, Home Based Business, Hope, Humor, life lessons, Obstacles, Passion, Possibilities, Uncategorized, Why, Writing

In which I handle objections…

Okay, not going to lie. This post is probably going to not come out the soft, gentle way I wanted it to. I’m trying, but I tend to get a little passionate and abrupt. So I figured this would be easier. Write it on a blog, so no one thinks I’m targeting them or judging. I’m not. Just trying to answer the objections I get as honestly as I can.

If there’s a little sarcastic humor in there, pardon me and just laugh. That’s what I do when I think up some of these answers.

Objection 1: I can’t afford to buy a challenge pack/nutrient dense meal replacement shake/workout program.

Answer: But you can afford the countless medical bills, complaints on social media¬†that your family is sick YET AGAIN, and that $550 gym membership you’ve used ONCE since you bought it on January 1st of LAST year? I’m not saying MY plan is the best one for your family, but I can tell you for certain that your plan isn’t working either.

Objection 2: I’m not into diets and protein shakes.

Answer: Neither am I. In fact, a typical day for me looks a little like this:

Before breakfast: Workout, drink my first 20 ounces of water, and have a cup of coffee after my shower

Breakfast: A nutrient-dense Cafe Latte, blended with flavors that any coffee bar lover will envy

Snack: A banana smothered in an all-natural nut butter (my favorite is cashew with peanut being a close second), and 20 ounces of water

Lunch: Avocado tuna salad and my second 20 ounces of water. A handful of Dark Chocolate Espresso trail mix for dessert

Snack: 20 ounces of water, a cup of coffee or tea, Apples, cashews, and two slices of my favorite cheese

Dinner: Homemade Chicken Caprese with Zucchini Noodles and fresh Parmesan, with a little Red Wine and water.

Objection 3: I don’t think coaching is for me.

Answer: Do you like to inspire people with your story of triumph, success, and victory over failure? Do you like to show people what it looks like to make better choices and change your lifestyle? Do you like to lead by example?

Objection 4: My spouse/significant other is not supportive?

Answer: This one I can understand. I was going at my workout/healthy living plan alone for almost nine years and just this year my husband FINALLY got on board and said yes. Oh he ate the food I prepared and smiled when I showed him the numbers on the scale dropping. But he just didn’t seem to get enthused about joining me, REALLY supporting me. It takes time, it’s discouraging, and it might never happen anyway. But YOUR health is VERY important¬†and if nothing else, you can let them know how important it is for YOU to live well. Ask them to watch you for a while and see what the changes are doing in your body and on your outlook on life. It’s amazing how a previously skeptical spouse will not only become your biggest supporter, but also get right down and sweat it out with you. Patience is key. Believers are not made overnight and they certainly aren’t made by nagging the person into going along with your latest whim. Show them that you ARE a product of the product and that you ARE winning.

Objection 5: Sounds like a neat program, but it’s just not the right time for me.

Answer: So when WOULD be the ideal time? Because I’ll tell you right now, that “ideal” time doesn’t exist. If you don’t make your health and wellness a priority NOW, you might as well understand that you are guaranteeing it won’t be until it’s too late. Or until you get a really HARSH wake-up call and are FORCED to make changes that are going to be a LOT harder. For me, it was a diagnosis and 85 extra pounds (and counting) that finally woke me up to the fact I HAD to make changes or I was going to end up in a hospital bed. It was several thousand dollars and many specialists later before I finally figured out that I needed to take action and get my health under control. As a society, we don’t often think of LONG term consequences for short term choices. We don’t count the REAL cost when we choose not to pay for a monthly shipment of Shakeology and an exercise program. Instead we keep popping hundreds of dollars of prescribed pills/supplements/vitamins and making multiple trips to the doctors/specialists, hoping they’ll fix our health problems.

News flash: The health professionals aren’t going to fix your health. YOU are the only one who can take FULL responsibility and take steps to improve/”fix” your health. I’m not downplaying REAL health problems. Some things ARE beyond our control. But taking charge of your health is NEVER beyond your control and we limit ourselves when we say the time is not right or there’s nothing I can do to change this.

I’ve heard other objections, but I’ll stop there for now. Every day of our lives, we make choices, for good or for ill. FOR our health or AGAINST it. To THRIVE or to just SURVIVE.

And just to prove that MOST obstacles and objections CAN be overcome, here’s a story for you!