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A *bit* of Credit.

As I approach most new and different things in life, I generally have the same mindset.

It goes something like this:
“I can’t do this. I’m going to say the wrong thing. I won’t be good enough. They’re going to get rid of me/dislike me. Someone will do better after me. Someone did better before me. I can’t do this. I shouldn’t do this.” And so on.

I get stuck in a spiral of negative self-doubt.  It’s terrifying and… exhausting.

To be honest, I have no idea where it came from. I have been surrounded by a lot of encouraging and loving people in my life who have lifted me up and given me confidence in my abilities… yet… I still go back to that same black hole. Every. Time.

Motherhood is quickly approaching. Part of me wants to keep this little one safely inside of me forever. And to be completely honest, a selfish part of me is terrified of the changes we’re going to face when we add one more human to our mix. Right now, aside from the occasional leg cramp or ache, life is pretty predictable. I can come and go as I’d like. I can eat when and what I want. I can take a nap when I need it. I know my schedule and have a pretty good idea of how the day will go. And I like it like that.

But that’s all about to change. In just a few short weeks, our whole world will be flipped upside down. All of the control will go out the window, and our lives will be dictated by a tiny little creature that we created. If parental personalities and tendencies have anything to do with it, I already KNOW this one is going to be stubborn and independent. And Mom and Dad will learn a whole new level of patience and acceptance. (And Dad will be even LATER every time we left the house.)

I can’t do this. I mean, I’m not ready.

“How are we going to get through all of the sleepless nights without turning on each other?” “What happens when/if breastfeeding doesn’t come along quickly enough or easily enough?” “Will I have the love that I need to be a good mother?”

Those of you who are already parents are chuckling right now; you know the answers to all of these questions, and perhaps you’re reliving those “glory days and nights” of old…

It’s time to stop and get real.

I *CAN* do this. After all, it’s a little late to go back now, right? I’m guessing that the sleepless nights, breastfeeding, and love will come much more naturally and easily if I start by believing in myself. This little one is going to believe in me and rely on me… and the least I could do is give myself a *bit* of credit to start the journey off on the right foot.

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Where do you need to start giving yourself more credit?

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have some class!

It’s been awhile since I’ve written, and I can only offer up the excuse that work has been CRAZY lately. (a good crazy, though)

School is back in session at UND, and that means that Wellness Center classes are also back in session. Can I get an AMEN?! I forgot how much easier it is to work out when you have a committed time, place, and group of people to show up to.

The Zumba classes I attended were PACKED with people that had dancing skills of all levels. I think it makes the classes so much more fun, because we’re all just bustin the moves together- nothing else. Judgment-free.

Make this a semester that you try something new. I’m looking forward to overcoming new challenges; heck, I might even try a spin class (again)… may be.

 

Motivation?

 

Do yourself a favor; learn just how FUN working out can be!

FINALLY.

I think it’s important to celebrate EVERY success you experience as you work your way to a healthier lifestyle. It’s not easy. And everything from going to the gym when you didn’t want to, to adding more vegetables to your daily intake, is something to be proud of.

Remember that awful day when I got into a car accident and tried a new class at the Wellness center called CardioKick? The one where you get a t-shirt after surviving successfully completing 5 classes?

Tonight I hit my 5th class.
Not only did I make it, but now he says he’ll officially call me by name instead of “Hey You!” And I had to work REALLY hard tonight, too. The class had fewer participants due to the Christmas break, so those of us stupid brave enough to come had to do double  everthing.

I ended up punching myself in the throat, running head-on into a black punching bag (I never claimed to be the most coordinated person), and almost puking for the first time in a long time while working out… but…
I DID IT. FINALLY. 

What are you celebrating today??

What are YOU waiting for?

We’re in the season of Advent… a time when Christians prepare for the coming of Christ the King. Each week we light another candle on the Advent wreath to symbolize the light that He is bringing into the world with His birth. Many of the messages we hear in church revolve around preparing our hearts and minds for what is coming. Whether or not you believe the same, I think it’s important that we live life in a way that doesn’t start each day with “I’ll start tomorrow.”

How many times have you thought, “I’ll eat healthy starting Monday” or “starting next week I will get to the gym”? Speaking from experience, there are too many “Mondays” and “next weeks” that happen every day. I think mine set me back at least an extra 100 pounds. I figured that I could make it another day or week feeling terrible about myself. I wasn’t ready to start loving myself and respecting myself by eating right and exercising… just yet.

The truth is that I was scared of what a lifestyle change might mean.

But seriously, why do we have to wait? Let this simmer for a second:

In our own minds, we’re supposed to get tomorrow, but you just never know. You are promised nothing.

There are all these ridiculously cheesy songs on the radio about living like you as though it were the end of your days. What does that mean to you? I can’t say that I’d advise you to quit your job, blow your savings, and start jumping off mountains relying solely on a piece of fabric to keep you alive; but I would like to challenge you to start doing the healthy little things that you keep putting off.

Maybe you just need to change your approach:

You want to lose weight. In my case, I had no clue what the final number was (mainly because of the denial I felt about how truly overweight I was). But let’s just say you have it in your head that you want to lose 50 pounds.

Considering that it takes 3500 calories to equal a pound, 50 is a big number. 175,000 calories, to be exact. Impossibleright? And since it’s impossible, you may as well eat that half of that chocolate cake for breakfast and also skip the gym again this week, because it’s not going anywhere. After all, there’s no way that you can possibly give up that many foods or sweat that much… right?

WRONG.

How about we look at it with a different mindset? Maybe you want your pants to fit better. And in order to do that, you know that it’s important to eat healthier and start exercising (or maybe exercise more). So you start small: you pass up a cookie for an apple, you add one extra serving of vegetables with your meals, you eat mindfully and stop when you’re satisfied (but not bursting at the seams), and you add just 30 extra minutes of exercise in your week.

Wow, that seems so much… easier.

So much more… do-able.

So much more… realistic.

I know that this is a hard time of year to think about starting to live a healthier life. But with no guarantees, what do you have to lose?

Think about why you want to or are doing this. It’s not about a number; it’s about quality of life. And a higher quality of life often also leads to a healthier quantity of life.

You can do this. One step at a time.

Starting right… NOW.

What little change are you going to make today?

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