Insane Courage

276502e223f4db4e8f8b9b003fac55d9I found this quote on Pinterest. For some reason, it really stuck with me. I feel like there are a lot of things I want in life, but something (or someone) always seems to be standing in my way. Sometimes it’s comfort that stands in the way – stability, normalcy, not wanting to shake things up. Sometimes it’s a person – someone who disagrees with me or opposes me, maybe even discourages me without realizing it. And sometimes … I stand in my own way. I talk myself in and out of good ideas, I lack courage and guts to do something bold. Something that could be life changing.

So here I sit. Typing at a computer at work. At a job I searched so hard for … and that’s been in constant flux since the day I started. I don’t know how I fit in here … sometimes I don’t even really feel like I’m here at all. Like my presence just goes unnoticed. I have no idea what the next few months might bring … maybe more hours … maybe less.

The uncertainty of it all is getting to me.

And then I think, if I could do anything I wanted in the world what would it be? And my dreams explode from inside me. I think about what I’d do if money was no issue … or if failure was impossible.  I feel so strongly about some things I want to just jump in … but often lack of courage or lack of resources, holds me back.

What would happen if I just jumped?

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Pure Michigan – Grand Haven

We kicked off summer with a great family vacation to Grand Haven. Jonathan and I were relieved that we started our healthy lifestyle a few months ago, because this vacation was filled with activity! We walked the pier at sunset, ran along the boardwalk to downtown, hiked the Dunes, and biked 45 miles to Holland and Tunnel Park. We had a great time being together, and enjoyed it even more now that we’re all spread across the country!

The “Non-Athletic” Runner

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Okay … so I floated through my youth, teen, and college years believing I was not athletic. I did not (and do not) enjoy sports. Running seemed … boring frankly. And I really didn’t prefer to exert myself any more than I had to.

For most of my life, I used my mom as an excuse. She was my role-model for the “I’m not athletic” line. I just said I inherited my non-sporty gene from my mom.

And then, at age 48, she ran a marathon.

Well, crap. There goes my excuse. I’m in my early twenties. Still have plenty of time to develop ability to run. So, last summer I completed a 5K training program.  If I’m being honest, I did not give it my best effort. I ran as little as I could thinking it would still count. I finished the program 8 weeks …. but I really couldn’t say I felt like I could run well by the end of it.

So at the beginning of this year (2014), we started paying attention to how we were eating and learned that if we wanted to eat more, we had to exercise more. So we purchased fitbit’s, which motivated us to get up and move … and Jonathan started training to run a marathon – so it was time for me to give running another chance.

This time around: I am 20 pounds lighter, I walked 2.5 miles every day for a month before I started running, and I’m in a different place mentally. That place being that I knew I could run – I just needed to do it. So rather than running as little as I could, I’m trying to run as much as I possibly can. Only stopping to walk when I absolutely need to (or there is a giant hill).

Lose It!

So … marriage is great. For the most part. There is one thing, that no one really warns you about:

Post-wedding weight gain.

It’s a problem that affects many married couples. You’re happy, you don’t really feel like you need to impress anyone – your spouse has declared in front of an audience that they’ll love you no matter what. You start cooking for 2 … which really means 4 – because we can take the leftovers for lunch tomorrow. But then there are no leftovers. Some couples struggle with this all their lives. Some individuals are strong enough to overcome the challenges alone. But others can only conquer weight loss and healthy eating if it’s a team effort.

logAnd 15 months into our marriage that’s where we found ourselves – doughy, overeating, and feeling like we couldn’t do anything to stop it.

But then … we found a way. We started counting calories, choosing healthier meals, eating smaller portions. As the weather grew warmer, we started exercising – even if it was just a short walk. And almost 6 months later, our lives have changed completely!

We haven’t met our “weight-loss goals” quite yet, but the journey has proven to be more important. Our plan doesn’t limit what we can eat – but it helps us make conscious choices not to overeat.

weight lossJonathan has lost 46 pounds. I’ve lost 25. It’s been a transformative journey in more ways than just the number on the scale. We feel great, we’re happy to have lost weight, but it’s about more than that. We’ve changed our lifestyle. It’s a lifestyle we’d like to continue maintaining even after we meet our weight loss goals!