Health

Losing It

Posted by on Aug 21, 2012 in Health, Mothering, Video | 1 comment

In May, when some friends convinced me to run the 5k, I began working out in earnest pretty much five times a week. I was running at least three miles five times a week, so about 15 miles a week for eight weeks. On top of that, I was doing some yoga, various interval workouts, climbing the StairMaster at the gym and randomly lifting weights. I didn’t loose a pound.

I’m sure I lost inches. I am positive that my clothing fits differently, although plenty of it still does not yet fit. I always face this battle after having a kidlet, but this time I was really trying to loose the weight. Baby #1 – the weight fell off like nursing magic. I BELIEVED in the power of milk production. Baby #2 – one year after pushing her out and I was still chunky – not extra chunky, but pretty far from smooth. Now, Baby #3 (and my 32-year-old self) – I am working at loosing the weight. I’d never made the effort before, but I figured I would now and I figured I’d have success, but I’m having to readjust what success looks like for me.

I was talking with a friend a few weeks ago who also has thyroid problems and she told me that she never looses any weight unless she does anaerobic activity for over an hour each day. Whoa. Who has time for that, I thought? And then I made the time. I walked. I walked pretty slowly. I tried my hardest not to pick up the pace. I did the long slow burn of not getting my heart rate into the range I love it to enter. I love sweating (when I’m supposed to be). I love hurting (the next day, not in the middle of it all). I love feeling wiped out (at the end, not when I’m stepping up to the plate). I love working out hard. Walking and anaerobic stuff is the opposite of that. It was killing me.

I lost four pounds in a week.

Ridiculous, right? I’ve been trying to keep up that low slow pace, but I couldn’t help myself today. Today I did these:

I stopped with circuit three. I’ll probably bust out with circuit four tomorrow. I can’t help it. I’m all in, even if it means the scale stays right where it is.

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Change is In the Air

Posted by on Jul 27, 2012 in Health, Mothering | 0 comments

The silver maple in our front yard has been mulched into tiny wood chips in the back of a truck. The shade it provided us, during these hot summer days, is all gone now. That very green grass in the middle of our yard will probably leave us too and we’ll have to put fill dirt over the stump once it is ground down next week or the week after.

Piper wanted to take a nap today. I moved her bed out of the blue room and back into the pink one. When Greer wakes up crying tonight, this will all become more interesting. In the meantime, she sleeps.

Greer, who used to nap for hours — once for four consecutively — has been cat napping for a week. It makes life a little trickier but I’m not excited about it like I would’ve been before 2012.

I’ve been exercising to DVDs that we recently sifted out of boxes in the garage, but I still can’t find my weights. If I’m going to get some muscles, I’m going to have to find those.

The baby is rocking on her hands and knees. It’s coming soon.

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Today

Posted by on Jul 25, 2012 in Health, Mothering, Theology, Video, Wifery | 1 comment

It’s just before one o’clock and there is a sixteen pound baby nursing in my one arm. The other arm has, until this very moment, been helping me hold up a book that I’ve been reading swiftly. It’s good and it’s non-fiction but not in a self-help kind of way.

There are two children in the blue room (which is what we call it now instead of Gideon’s room because Piper sleeps there too and she takes offense) who are playing nicely with the door closed. Their muffled voices sweep through every level of the house, save the basement, where the air conditioner is working it’s magical self ragged. It’s new, in terms of air conditioners, so it doesn’t sound alarmingly loud, but still, it drowns out all else in the basement when it’s working. I am sure that the relative niceness in which the children are currently playing can end at any moment, perhaps this one, so I will tip toe about hoping to prolong their pleasantries.

I’ve just ended a phone call with my husband who usually calls at least once a day to check in and see how his people are getting on. We are getting on well. He has news of a client and we talk the details to death. Then he needs to go and we remind each other of our love and hang up.

Prior to these moments, the children and I had been watching Charity: Water videos. I’ll never get over the Time Bomb Luxury Lab one. It’s how I first learned that the solvable issue in Africa isn’t civil war and isn’t how to help age long rivalries find civility – it is water. Water changes everything and you will never convince me otherwise. Water and Living Water are the two key issues everywhere, it’s just that most of the rest of us don’t have to give one thought to either of those issues in order to wake up tomorrow. You’ll just do normal things and get normal results. It’s luxury at it’s finest to be able to loose sight of the basics.

But here is the video that drew us in today. If you are on twitter, no doubt you’ve seen it already. If not, I think you should watch it. It made me cry, but not the kids. They’re far too practical for that. “Where is she buried?” asked one of them. “Why are they so happy?” asked another. “How many cars were involved? How long will the people have the clean water? How many people don’t have to drink dirty stuff now?” Good, practical, smart questions that I bet another little girl would’ve asked too.

Rachel Beckwith’s Mom Visits Ethiopia. from charity: water on Vimeo.

I’m off to hug my babies and get a drink of water and thank the Lord for all these things.

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On Death

Posted by on Jul 23, 2012 in Health, Product Reviews, Theology | 0 comments

I’ve been reading the collected works of Nora Ephron lately. She died last month and I have been (morbidly, sadly, nostalgically) drawn to her. I want to watch When Harry Met Sally all the time and am tempted to try to watch Silkwood. Thankfully, my local library has quite a few things to grab and devour at home. Heartburn has been opened, thoroughly enjoyed and returned. I Feel Bad About My Neck and other thoughts on being a woman is still in my hands, but the end discovered.

Given all the craziness of this past weekend and the fact that I am reading all of this after the author has, herself, died, I quite appreciated her thoughts about it all. Here’s a taste for you:

“Before you get sick, you have absolutely no idea of how you’re going to feel once you do. You can imagine you’ll be brave, but it’s just as possible you’ll be terrified. You can hope that you’ll find a way to accept death, but you could just as easily end up raging against it. You have no idea what your particular prognosis is going to be, or how you’ll react to it, or what options you’ll have. You have no clue whether you will ever even know the truth about your prognosis, because the real question is, What is the truth, and who is going to tell us, and are we even going to want to hear it?”

I loved this. I could probably quote anything from her book and follow it with a proclamation of love, but this seemed so fitting for the things that have been rolling around in my mind.

Given the national and international response to the stories that are floating around the internet and pouring out of people’s fingers onto blogs and comment sections everywhere about the reaction to what happened in a darkened screening room, you would think that no one agrees with Nora. You would surmise that everyone is saying that they know exactly how they will respond to staring down death and, in this particular case, a mad man. There is, of course, always the hope for bravery and the general idea of heroism as well.

Most nights, while trying to fall asleep, I hear faint sounds that always, without fail, make me believe that someone is breaking in to our house. I lay there, suddenly wide awake, attempting to decipher if the dull thud I just heard was the neighbor’s car door shutting, or someone knocking into something in the basement. The number of times I’ve woken Jud up and asked him to check the house for intruders is too many because of just how deeply I’ve started to believe the nonsense my brain has concocted. He is then so worked up by the adrenaline rush his body creates to fight off the invisible intruders he sometimes can’t go back to sleep. It is these false alarms, these times I’ve cried wolf, that especially makes me wonder if someone ever did come into our home uninvited if I would shrug it off as just another crazy thing my brain has made up or the real deal.

In the meantime, most nights, I am strategizing about how to get the children out (Whom will I leave behind? Should I just get the baby and run to the neighbor’s as quickly as possible for them to help save the others? What if stopping to get her means that neither of us get out at all? Will the older ones scream or cry or just be sleepily too limp to move if I am prodding them to get up at 2am? I play out the different scenarios over and over until I give up and pray that my reactions will be the right ones) and have everyone survive. I am trying to be prepared for something that I hope never ever happens.

There wasn’t any way for the people to be prepared for what happened this weekend. They couldn’t have known how the details would play out. Even the first responders, who have been trained, who are supposed to have all of the answers in times of crisis, were overwhelmed at times by the magnitude, the horror, the amount of information flying into their hands that needed to be processed and upon which they must immediately act. I have heard that one of the dispatchers did a truly phenomenal job mutual-aiding EMS workers and even providing direction for the incident commander. She should be highly praised. You can’t teach someone how to remain that calm under that much pressure. It’s super-natural. It’s heroic. But not everyone has that kind of clarity of mind, especially when you are knee deep in the mire of the situation. Especially when the bullets are flying at you.

Heroism then is rare. We aren’t all heroes, but no one will get to escape death forever. No one will get to look death in the face every time and walk away unscathed. It is coming, even for the heroes.

Then what? That depends on what you believe. Not that what you believe will magically come true for you and we can each have our own version of the afterlife. Not at all. There are only two outcomes, but what you believe determines the outcome because that which you believe about Jesus Christ has efficacy for your soul. Jesus Christ died and rose again for our sins. Trusting in this truth grants eternal life. Unbelief keeps one from life. Basic. Every other belief system in the world says that you have to do better, be better, work harder, make yourself into something and hope that you’ve done enough by the time you die. This offer, of eternal life on no merit of your own, without any work on your part, is unique. The uniqueness is part of why I believe it to be true. I hope you will believe too.

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Yoga Day!!

Posted by on Jul 17, 2012 in Health | 3 comments

I didn’t feel like putting on shoes today, but I needed to do a workout.

Jillian Michaels always motivates me, even when she is saying ridiculous things like “Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.”

While you do this remember three things:

1. BREATHE! Inhale and exhale while you do the repetitions. It’s important to getting fully into the sketchiness of the poses.

2. Remember your core. Push your abs into your spine the whole time. Your back will thank me for this.

3. It’s okay to be shaky. Keep trying the poses and don’t worry about looking silly. You’re in your own living room!

Happy Yoga-ing!

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Racing

Posted by on Jul 16, 2012 in Health | 1 comment

Last Saturday the Color Run Omaha occurred. Here are my important points:

– 13,000 people running just over 3 miles seems like a lot of people to move through a small space.

– 13,000 people WALKING just over 3 miles will take forever and infuriate anyone who thought they would be running.

– I really hate the idea of people throwing stuff at me while I work out.

– If you wait to start a race until 10am during July and then create dusty cornstarch clouds every so often, you might want to offer water to the people who are inhaling the cloud as they pass through. No, one offering is not enough.

– General niceties such as slower traffic to the right should be in play here instead of creating meandering walls of humans for runners to dodge.

– There is absolutely nothing good that comes from having children under one year old out during the heat of the day to complete a 5k.

– The above is true for children five and under as well.

So, yeah, I wasn’t one of those people who thought this was ‘the happiest 5k on the planet’. I was the one with a surly expression wishing people would not stop directly in front of me.

This Saturday, some friends and I have decided to run our own race. There will not be any colored cornstarch and if 13k people attempt to do the same thing, we’ll just run a different route. It’s the Redemption Run and I’m gonna be happy.

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