Week 2 – oh how I despised YOU! ;)

My post is a little late because I wanted to forget about last week’s training.  Here is the subject line in the email I sent to my  running coach:

Week 2…YUCK! :)

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These pictures show my real feelings about the whole week.  I am not sure why it was so bad…humidity, heat, fatigue…excuses! LOL! But it was! When I emailed my runs to our coach I felt like a poor student reporting bad test results to my teacher.

I will say I love having goals for every run.  It breaks the monotony and helps with purpose and getting it done…but oh, do they hurt! :)  I sent the girls a text at one point saying, “what doesn’t kill us or make us puke, makes us stronger! Right?”

We decided to tackle the hardest run first…Wow! Here is how that played out:

Run 1 – Tuesday – 8x800m with 600m recovery
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400 – dodging ankle biter dog!
Last week’s 800s were better but both workouts were challenging.  One we had rest and the other active recovery.  It does make a difference. We also had a dog nipping at our ankles on the last repeat.  Not so much fun! :)  When we were done…we were done!  We sent this picture to show how we felt about 800m repeats! Deirdre was right there with us – many miles away!
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Run 2 – 6 x 400m repeats with 90 second rest…
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We thought going into this one…piece of cake! It is only 400m and only 6 of them.  Well, we were wrong once again! They were tough.  As you can see, I start out slower…I have to work on making it more consistent with the others.

The 3rd run was better…I ran it thinking of the fallen heroes in Chattanooga and the sacrifice they made.  Praying and thinking of others made it much more doable.  I am running. God has blessed me to be able to move.  I need to be thankful for life and the ability to put one foot in front of the other…daily!

Run 3 – 5 miles at 80% 5k pace – goal 807-809 – average 809 
Mile 1: 804
Mile 2: 803
Mile 3: 805
Mile 4: 808
Mile 5: 823 – This mile was hard…I tried to pick it back up and was unsuccessful.  My average was good overall but I really struggled that last mile.

 

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Run 4 – Sunday:  5 miles @ 90% 10k pace – 8:00-8:05 goal – 810 average – yuck!
This was the worst run by far.  I had a really hard time and didn’t keep pace.  All I can say is YUCK!
Mile 1: 801
Mile 2: 805
Mile 3: 808
stopped and walked for about 30 seconds between mile 3 and 4
Mile 4: 812
Mile 5: 821
Tough and brutal!!! But done! Mentally challenging! But done! I was so glad to have others out there with me.  It made me keep going and not quit.  We chose to have a little fun once we finished.

 5 miles @  90% of 10k pace on a bike is NO problem….

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Thankful for friends to suffer with…and grow with!

Proverbs 27.17 ~ As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.

This week’s runs showed me that we will have bad runs…we will have good runs….and we will have done runs! And in the middle of it all we can still have fun runs…we can still grow and we can still do more than we thought! All runs were finished and I didn’t regret one of them!!!!

1 Corinthians 1.11-12

11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully  12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.

Galatians 6.9
9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
So here’s to week 3….
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BFF…Best Forever Friends!

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Do you have one of those friends who knows you better than anyone else? I do! God blessed me many, many years ago!  He has actually blessed me over and over again with amazing friends!   I truly believe this has been one of life’s greatest blessings from God – Best Forever Friends.  Living in so many different places has allowed me to meet many wonderful people and thankfully, make many best forever friends.

This week I have had the incredible privilege of having my longest BFF visit! Along with her daughter, she made the trek from Arkansas to Tennessee.  The awesome thing about this BFF is that we have been friends since we were two years old. Needless to say, we have been friends A LONG time! Above is a picture of us celebrating my 3rd birthday at our daycare. Many of my first memories include Michelle.

After Michelle left, I was going through Instagram photos and someone posted this scripture:

1 Thessalonians 5.11
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up,
just as in fact you are doing.

Michelle came to mind as I read this post.  She has always encouraged me NO MATTER WHAT.  God has blessed our friendship in many ways over the years. We are more like sisters due to the fact we have known each other so long.  We were roommates in college and then again once we graduated.  We worked together several times throughout those years.  She knows me…the real me! We can get together after months/years of not spending time together and it is like we were together just yesterday.

I felt compelled to blog about this so I could do as she has done for me – ENCOURAGE and BUILD UP others! Michelle is definitely not my only BFF…but she is the one that has been around the longest and through the most with me.  I know I can go to her NO MATTER WHAT! We all need one or more of these type of friends.  We also have to be one!

There are SO many of you reading this that are my BFFs and I am thankful for each of you! All of you have made me a better person in so many ways! You know who you are…:)  Thank you for encouraging me and building me up in life.  God has blessed me with you!

Proverbs 24.14

A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

 
Ecclesiastes 4.9-10
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work:  If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!
 
Proverbs 27.17
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
Life is tough as we have seen over the last couple of weeks…we all need friends! Friends we can count on through thick and thin. Friends who will be real with us when we need it and friends who will love us no matter what.  Let me encourage you to be one of those BFFs to someone! Let’s encourage others and build them up!
Proverbs 27.17
As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.

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Chicago Marathon Training – Week 1 Recap

I will start this blog with a funny! Several years ago a friend captured a photo of me finishing a race. It was ugly! I was running up a hill while trying to stay ahead of the 3rd place female….it was a battle! Boy – did he capture it in print.

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Shortly there after, a running meme started circulating around the internet.  It was me! (Not really…but, boy it could have been!) This is when I thought, hmmmm, I need to do something about my form. LOL!

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I so thought I had it going on! I finished in second place…surely I had awesome form! NOT!!!!  I printed the two photos together as inspiration. It has taken me a while to get there…but I am making great strides.  I would say I really didn’t make it until these last 8 months.

Last year I gained entry into the  2014 Chicago Marathon and once I returned from Boston, I kept training.  But, I was running injured and stopped running in July.  The running had taken a toll on my body.  Since April 2013 I had run 4 marathons and was on track to do my 5th in two years…not that that was what I was going for at all…it was just how it worked out.  After a long run in California, I made the tough decision my body needed a break.  I would stop training and defer my Chicago training.

That was the best decision ever…for a couple of reasons!  First, instead of training alone I am now in this with the 3 others I mentioned in the previous posts.  We are in this together during the good runs and the bad ones.  Whether we are running together or virtually, we know we are in this with each other! Secondly, I found CrossFit which led me to CrossFit Endurance and Pose running.

My CrossFit coach had a Pose Running Seminar in September of 2014.  I hadn’t been running for a couple of months and thought it would be a good time to start back. Through this seminar I learned proper form and technique. Boy, I had it all wrong…as the above picture shows oh, so well!  I am still learning! Not growing up as an athlete, I was not used to skill work and drills.  I was familiar with it of course, just didn’t do it.  I just ran.   Now, it is a very important part of my training.  A VITAL PART!

This is all so encouraging to me because I was able to qualify for Boston twice with HORRIBLE form and technique.  Now, that I am running better…I can’t wait to see what is in store.  God has a plan! He knew, as He did with Boston, I needed a team to train with…and a great coach as well.  I have both!  A team that encourages me mentally, spiritually and physically! When I don’t want to go…they are there to hear me gripe and then they kick me out the door. ;)  Our coach knows our potential and pushes just enough! I am beyond excited.  Another thing that got me excited was comparing my oh so horrible picture to a recent race finish photo. As I said, I have come a long way…but, I am still a work in progress.

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Now to the week of training.

Tuesday – 10 x 200 meter repeats with 300 meter recovery – Not too bad…did it with Yoli and we got it done in our neck of the woods.  It is so awesome having her out there running her pace as I run mine!

Thursday -6 x 800 meter repeats with 2 minute rest – Not so much fun! Again, I met Yoli and we got it done.  I just don’t like 800 meter repeats. LOL! And 6 of them…yuck!

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Friday – 5k @ 85% of 10k pace – I did this one alone.  Fun! Thanks to my sweet husband I have my new Garmin watch to help me stay on track.  The first .25 mile, the watch yelled at me continually.  I was either too fast or too slow. Finally, it stopped beeping and I found my groove and stayed on track the rest of the run.  I accomplished my target pace! So very thankful!

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Saturday – 5k time trial – DIDN’T HAPPEN! Mentally I have such a hard time with time trials.  It is so hard for me to make race day pace without a race.  So, I looked for one all around the area to no avail. The closest was Knoxville and I just couldn’t justify it! So, I skipped it. Not really…I just put it off until Sunday when I knew Yoli would be able to run with me or should I say in front of me.  So Saturday’s run happened on Sunday. :)

How was it? It was okay.  It was hot.  It was humid.  It was, well it is done!

Here is the run report I sent to my coach:

Run 1 – 10 x 200 –
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:59 – I don’t have a clue what happened here. :)
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Run 2 – 6 x 800 –
3:46 – slow getting started….
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Run 3 – 5k @ 85% 10k pace – GOAL pace – 8:01-8:09 –  25:08 – PACE – 8:07
Run 4 – 5k time trial – 23:56 – 1 minute and 19 seconds slower than PR of 22:37 
Time trials kick my butt mentally.  I have to learn how to power through them.  My hamstrings were really sore from workouts…excuses, excuses. :)  But ALL DONE!
WEEK ONE – is in the books! We are thrilled to be chipping away! I have had faster weeks, faster times…but each time, whether faster or slower is making me stronger and better! Today, Rick Warren tweeted a great quote: When setting a goal, what matters is not who you think YOU are, but rather who you think GOD is. My goal is to finish well! And I am sure His is the same!
2 Timothy 4.7
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
Hebrews 12.1-2
Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

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Faith, food and fitness…

This morning I came home from my 3rd run of the week and was hungry.  (Imagine that! Mike would say I am ALWAYS hungry! :))  As I was thinking about breakfast, I remembered I had just picked some butternut squash from our garden.  The cool thing about the butternut squash is that I didn’t plant it intentionally.  It grew from table scraps we threw out in our raised bed garden. I googled recipes and found a great one – butternut squash hash.  I made my own adjustments to the recipe and presto – breakfast was served.  It was pretty amazing if I say so myself. :)

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BUT, the awesome thing about this recipe was it was on a blog named Food, Faith and Fitness.  This summer God has been tweaking things in my life and these three words were impressed on my heart on 23 June 2015.  I wrote them in the order – Faith, Food, Fitness.

This past year my journey has truly been all three of these combined…the puzzle is finally coming together in terms of wholeness – spiritual health, mental health and physical health! I was so encouraged when I found the site I started looking around.  I found a blog post from April that truly hit home with me today considering the events of yesterday.  It was just a series of photos/quotes/scripture written or taken by random people.  I wanted to share some of them.  They hit home for me!

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Let’s remember where our hope comes from – it comes from the Lord!

The blog Food Faith Fitness can be found here:    http://www.foodfaithfitness.com/

Stop by…I was encouraged and I know you will be as well!

Now to my run…today’s run was a 5K at 85% of my 10k pace.  I was not looking forward to this run.  It meant keeping a steady pace without a race environment.  Tomorrow’s time trial 5k will be the same. :(  But, this is what makes us stronger.  I also thought a lot about the blessing of being on the road today.  My mind shifted to the ones affected firsthand yesterday.  Some of the first responders and police personnel are my friends.  I workout with them.  I have run with them.  It made me give thanks once again for every step I am able to make…  Their lives were forever changed yesterday as mine was in Boston on April 15, 2013.  We will forever know where we were on those days.  It changes you!

As today’s run pushed me to places I didn’t want to go…it made me better! It made me stronger.   I can refuse to get out there and do it or I can move forward through it.  Some things are thrown at us without us knowing they are coming and we are not prepared…and others we choose to do and go through.  In either case, our attitude and our faith in the process can and will get us through!  One step at a time…we do get #stronger!

Joshua 1.9 

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.

Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for theLord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Friday run – 5K at 85% of 10k pace – done

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#strong….

#strong – Whether it be #chattanoogastrong, #noogastrong or #bostonstrong – The word “strong” has been paired with cities that are close to my heart and has gained new meaning for most of us over the past several years.  It’s pairing has followed senseless tragedy.  A tragedy where innocent people lost lives and where phenomenal people have helped save them.

When we feel a personal connection to the tragedy it does something inside.  God has placed me close to two of these cities…two of these tragedies…way too close!  As I ponder it, I know there is a reason.  I don’t know what the reason is and I don’t know that I ever will on this side of eternity.

We live in a fallen world.  We live in an evil world.  BUT, we also live in a world of selfless individuals who are willing to protect and serve for our freedoms.  Today we lost four of those heroes and several more were injured.  Senseless is the first word that comes to mind – senseless!  In the middle of the chaos heroes were made and communities were made stronger! #strong

I went back to the blog I wrote the day after Boston 2013 to help me process the activities of today.  It has been so hard to get my mind/heart wrapped around it all. And why it keeps happening!  The statements I wrote then, along with the scripture brought calm back to my soul…

God is showing me He is in control.  Tragedy causes people to search for reasons why…to search for a sense of hope.  We may never know why but God is providing hope.  He is in control.  Romans 8.28 – For we know that all things work together for the good of those who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose.

A friend sent me a devotion today.  It was talking about being thankful in all circumstances.  My brother sent me 1 Thessalonians 5.18 – here is 1 Thessalonians 5. 16-18….16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.  It is so hard to be thankful for the tragedy that unfolded on Marathon Monday but in the devotion it stated again, we can’t see the big picture. He can.

“Remember who our God truly is, a God who is there and a God who cares.  So let us pause to consider our Great King. Let’s look on heavenly things for a moment to calm our nerves.”  Full blog here: http://wp.me/p1uMx6-lo

#strong in Christ is what gets me through daily.  He has shown me through tragedy and through triumph HE is there and will be my strength when I can’t do it alone….which is often.  Hope is found in Him and Him alone.  We are just passing through this chaotic world…thank goodness.  Love others! Pray often! Stay #strong….I am proud to say I am #chattanoogastrong and #bostonstrong BUT most importantly I am #Jesusstrong Because we know HE wins in the end!

Psalm 119.28 ~ My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word.

Ephesians 6.10 ~ Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.

Isaiah 40.29  ~ He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.

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I want to say thanks to all of those  in our community who did an amazing job today bringing calm back to our city.  You will be in my prayers as will your families.  Praying for peace and comfort for the families who lost loved ones. Praying for peace and comfort for those who were injured as well as their families.  Here is my prayer for all involved:

Isaiah 40:27-31
27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and speak, O Israel,

“My way is hidden from the LORD, and my right is disregarded by my God”?
28 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.
29 He gives power to the faint, and strengthens the powerless.
30 Even youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted;
31 but those who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.

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Let the fun continue…Day 2~800s!

See how we positioned the name of the church in the background….that was intentional! Now that the 800m repeats are done…we need REST! :)

6 x 800 meters with 2 minute rest – Whew! That was fun! Not! But done! It sure makes it easier when you know someone else is out there pushing hard too.  And then, when she finishes first, she is always encouraging me to the very end.  I don’t know what I would do without the best training buddies EVER!

Yoli, Deirdre and Shannon and I are all in this together! We will finish the full on crazy 26.2 in October! Iron sharpens iron is what this is all about.  We run to glorify God and we do it with like-minded friends who push and sharpen us along the way.  It makes this journey so much sweeter!!

Proverbs 27.17 ~ As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.

Legs were a little sore from doing back squats yesterday.  I am trying to learn the balance between my CrossFit workouts and running.  I need them both but I need to balance them.  This seems to be an on-going theme in my life. Balance! I will find it!

Proverbs 11:1 – A false balance [is] abomination to the LORD: but a just weight [is] his delight.

Running Blessed!

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Crazy & Busy…or BOTH!

This summer God has been dealing with me when it comes to busyness and/or craziness.  These two words have been used as adjectives to describe me a lot lately! Wow! I know that everyone who uses these to describe me are doing it in jest…but there is so much truth to both.  Are they bad descriptions? Yes and no! Yes, when they get in the way of what should be my main priority.  No, when they are in line with God’s will for my life!  So, these two words got me thinking, contemplating and re-examining where I am in line with His will and calling on my life.  (I know-thinking, contemplating and re-examining can be considered crazy and scary!)

So today, my devotional was titled BUSYNESS.  HMMM!  And then the above picture was posted online.  I do believe the busyness gets in the way more times than not.  I figured this would be the best time to meet it head on.  All summer I have said once I have a chance to slow down I would make a ‘new’ plan for how I say yes and no to things in front of me.  One thing I read earlier this summer on a blog or post was to make sure all things are God-initiated.  Not all things I am busy with are bad…there are just way too many of them. :) When that happens I neglect my quiet time with God.  I neglect my family.  I fall down on my job.  It’s like running with too many ‘things/gadgets’ on me – it slows me down and make me inefficient/ineffective! I don’t want that. I want God to have my best, my family to have my best and my job to have my best.

Where does this leave me?  It leaves me learning to BE STILL. The Lord says He will fight for me if I am still…Who wouldn’t want Him on his or her side?

Exodus 14.14 –The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.

Here’s to being still and saying no unless it is God-initiated.

Now to the crazy claim! Yes, I am FULL ON CRAZY!  16 years ago, God gave me the desire to run…for fun. :) 6 years ago, God gave me the desire to run faster…not always fun…but rewarding.  Then 11 months ago, I was introduced to CrossFit and my whole world did turn CRAZY! (At least that is what I am being told, over and over and over again!) But, I disagree.  I found something that helped me realize God’s potential for my body.  He designed us to MOVE! He designed our bodies to be fueled well with what He has provided and to move well with His incredible design.  I have seen results unlike any other time in my life.  Why? I now see my body as His temple and treat it as such.  (Body image has been a struggle for me my whole life – this has finally taken hold – I am HIS and I need to glorify Him with ALL things!…this is another whole blog post!)

Now, that I am finally putting all of the pieces of the puzzle together, I am seeing results.  My body has responded very well to eating healthy – His way! It has also responded well to moving in different ways –  running and performing high-intensity functional movements several times a week.  My running performance has improved because of the combination of it all.  I am so excited about this! Why? Because as His plan would have it …I have the amazing opportunity to run the Chicago Marathon AND the New York Marathon this fall.  I deferred my entry to Chicago last year due to burn out and injury.  It was the best thing I could have done because that is when CrossFit and CrossFit Endurance found me.  I am a new runner now.  I run better and more efficiently….hence the better performance.

Chicago and New York are both part of the World Majors.  The WMM is a series consisting of six of the largest and most renowned marathons in the world: Tokyo, Boston, Virgin Money London, BMW Berlin, Bank of America Chicago and TCS New York City Marathon. I have done London and Boston.  After November 1st, I will have done Chicago and New York.  I will have Tokyo and Berlin left.  God planted this seed a very long time ago when I was just running for fun.  This was way before I realized He was going to use running as part of my ministry for Him.

Running has been God-initiated from the beginning…way before I realized it.  With that being said…this blog will now be about my journey to Chicago and beyond.  thenextmailboxboston is taking me to Chicago first and on to a walk(because that is what I will be doing-3 weeks after Chicago) in New York’s Central Park.  Will you join me on this God-given journey? I cant’ wait to see how this training season plays out.

Chicago training officially started today.  Yay!  This training plan will be done completely different from in the past.  I will only run 4 days a week and will focus on quality runs vs. quantity.  I am excited because there of my 3 other running angels who are running the Chicago Marathon as well.  We will be in this together.  i2 – Iron Sharpens Iron!

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
 Proverbs 27.17

Today was day one of training.  Day one is done and in the books.  I am going to keep a simple journal to keep track of my times so I can report back to my coach.  I am also going to document here for accountability purposes.  Some days I just don’t want to run.  Now I will have more eyes on whether or not I do it. :) i2!

Here is the week’s schedule:

Tuesday – 10 x 200 meter repeats with 300 meter recovery – DONE!

Thursday – 5k @ 85% of 10k pace

Wednesday or Friday – 6 x 800 meter repeats with 2 minute rest

Saturday – 5k time trial

Here’s to a great day looking forward to a great first week and an awesome 12 weeks!

Running Blessed and to Glorify HIM every step of the way! Trish

Habakkuk 2.2-3 – My training passage!

Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets, That the one who reads it may run. “For the vision is yet for the appointed time; It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; For it will certainly come, it will not delay.…

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California Reflection…

God is an amazing God…all the time! This life we live is short.  Make memories every step of the way.  Take snapshots of your time with those you love. Don’t blink and miss it!

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This week I spent time in California with my best friend from high school.  We are truly blessed! After 30 years we still love each other no matter what! 30 years! Where does the time go?  Andi moved to Orange County, California when we were 18. She has lived there most of the time I have known her.  Once they moved to California, I have visited her every year until I the year I got married.  During those years of visiting, I also lived there with her two summers and then moved out there for one and half years before moving overseas.  California is like a second home. Now more than ever!

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Over the last two years my brother and his family along with my niece and her family have moved to the same area.  Now, why didn’t they come live out there when I was there?? Don’t know other than all things work together for a reason.  I wouldn’t trade where I am and how I got there.

Romans 8.28

 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,

who have been called according to his purpose.

My time there this week allowed me to reflect how God has a master plan.  It is truly amazing how the threads that tie me to California have not only remained intact but they are even stronger now.  What are the odds that my brother and niece would live within 15 miles of my best friend who has been there forever?  Now when I travel to Cali I get to spend time with family and friends(who are family.)

This small town Arkansas girl has permanently landed in a small town in Tennessee.  I wouldn’t change it for the world.  The journey that got me there allowed me to truly appreciate the world God created and all of the different types of people in it.  Visiting California always reminds me of how diverse our world truly is.  The beautiful weather and scenery draw people in from all over.  It is always refreshing to get away from my wonderful, small world and experience the big city for a while.  It makes going home so very good.

This week I also got to share a fun experience with my brother.  He started CrossFit two weeks ago.  We were able to do a WOD together at his box.  The people were very welcoming and it was a wonderful bonding experience for big sis and little brother in our older age. :)  I love having new things in common with my brother and sister – my first friends in life.  God blessed me with an awesome brother and sister.  They have and always will be there for me no matter what.  Distance separates us but the love we have for one another keeps us close.

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Family and friends are priceless.  My life has been blessed by many lifelong friends all over the world.  California is one of my happy places, always has been and now it is even more so.  Thankful for the opportunities and blessings to be able to visit and enjoy!

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One thing would have made it better and that would have been if Mike could have enjoyed it with me.  But he has been so very blessed with work he couldn’t break away.  It has been a little over a year since he started working again after his fall.  God has blessed him with plenty of work.  Thankful! Next time!

God is good all the time and all the time God is good! Memories are made in the moment! Don’t blink and miss them!

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Your story matters…

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Looking through the eyes of a child…when do we look in awe and wonder anymore? On April 5,  I turned 46.  Wow! 46 years old! I still feel like a child so often, but I am obviously NOT.   Currently, I am sitting  on an airplane behind a 6-year-old flying for the first time.  As we took off, her eyes were full of awe and wonder.  She didn’t have one ounce of fear in her gaze.  She trusted the process…her mom bringing aboard, the plane itself and the pilots guiding us to our destination.  She was fully engaged in the wonder of it all!

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As I watched her, it got me thinking…we too should approach life with a sense of awe and wonder.  We should trust the process…our heavenly Father who gave us life, the body he gave us to live out this life and the fact that He guides us daily.  He wants us to give our life to Him every day and take off for Him!

My morning started early today.  I am flying to California to see friends and family.  I had to catch a shuttle in Chattanooga to the Nashville Airport due to unforeseen car issues.  To ensure I made it on time for my 7:45 a.m. flight, I had to take the first shuttle available – 3:30 a.m.  Now to most of you that know me know that isn’t too bad. I am used to getting up to workout at 5:00 a.m.  My day always starts early.

Over the past 8 months I have come to truly appreciate the early morning time.  It has become me time.  Time for me to work the body God gave me to the best of its ability.  I have learned a new appreciation for this amazing temple He provided each of us to travel on the journey He is providing.  This is a story of the awe and wonder He is giving me daily when I listen to Him en route to His daily plan and the journey of my life.  I hope to continue to find the awe and wonder daily!

Fitness is nothing new to me.  I have my degree in physical education and have been teaching spinning classes as well as group exercise classes for the last 10 years.  I know how the body works.  I know all this! But, it was just recently I got it! God revealed to me how my body is not my body but His temple.  His! What I do to it and for it affects Him greatly!

Walking and running have been important to me for over 20 years.  Moving comes naturally.  Eating does too…but my eating is where I neglected the temple.  My relationship with food started a very long time ago.  I will never forget the day in 5th grade, when still young, a classmate grabbed my backside.  From that time on I had a complex about my ‘big butt.’  This is when food and I started a roller coaster ride.  I would go up and then come back down, literally and figuratively.  I have been on the spectrum from the overweight side and then would make a swing to the anorexic side and back.  Thankfully, after the anorexic symptoms in my early 20s I didn’t visit that loop again.  So to help me fight the battle, I received a degree in home economics along with my physical education degree.  I figured this would help me get off the ride and stay level, I was wrong.  It has not until recently, that as I said before, I got it!

Fast forward to June 2015 – after a few crazy years of severe ups and downs in life – Boston Bombings, Mom’s subdural hematoma and Mike’s broken shoulder – I was moving my body but I was not taking care of the inside of His temple.  I had added extra padding to the temple cushions.  It made moving harder. It  also took a toll on my mental state.  I knew I was moving and exercising but I wasn’t fueling properly or taking care of me properly!

In June 2015, I started CrossFit.  There are a lot of opinions out there about CrossFit, all I can say is, it is the best thing I have done for me or His temple – ever.  It has shown me what this amazing temple is capable of – NO MATTER what age or size you are. CrossFit has helped me make my body – CrossFit! Fit for life never fit for what He did for us on the cross…Fit for bringing Him glory daily.

Lamentations 3.19 – 28

19 I remember my affliction and my wandering,
    the bitterness and the gall.
20 I well remember them,
    and my soul is downcast within me.
21 Yet this I call to mind
    and therefore I have hope:

22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
    therefore I will wait for him.”

25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him,
    to the one who seeks him;
26 it is good to wait quietly
    for the salvation of the Lord.
27 It is good for a man to bear the yoke
    while he is young.

28 Let him sit alone in silence,
    for the Lord has laid it on him.

He has shown me the true beauty He created.  How if we fuel it properly, we will truly move like a well-oiled machine.  He is the creator of the universe.  He knows how all of the intricate parts of it work together.  He was the first machinist.  He knows how we are woven together and how we are supposed to move seamlessly.  He also created fuel for us to be able to move efficiently and effectively.  Between learning how to properly eat and drink His fuel – I feel better and younger than ever.  What prompted this story telling? First, I am stuck on a plane for 4 hours. Second, everyone has a story.  Our stories are our testimonies for Him.  He continues to write my story, page by page and day by day.  Hopefully, someone will resonate with it.  This journey started ages ago and is still unfolding.

 

 

I am just a normal person with normal goals.  I had to work to overcome and I am still working to overcome the food issues in my life.  My journey changes daily.  I have to get up daily with awe and wonder at His creation to make it work.

This year I am not going to Boston.  That has been my story the last three years.  I will miss it this year. I will miss the team.  But, my story has taken a different turn this year.  The next mailbox is not Boston but Chicago.  Now that I am moving better and fueling better I have high expectations for this great run.   Along with CrossFit, endurance running and proper nutrition I plan to glorify Him with every amazing step.  I’m excited God has brought me to this place of sharing.  I have tried so many things to get right with food and all of them sent me up and down.  I am hoping by sharing and by recognizing this is His story too that this time I will be successful in keeping His temple clean.

 

1 Corinthians 6.19

19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? 20 For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

Will you join me?

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Memories…a trail of faith!

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Today is a day I have been dreading in a sense.  Not really sure why dread is the word…but I know how I have been feeling.  One year ago today is when we received ‘the phone call’.  Mom had suffered a subdural hematoma(brain bleed) and we didn’t know what was next.  Our whole world changed in an instance!

As today approached, my anticipation grew.  Again, I don’t know why…I should be thrilled we are one year out! (and don’t get me wrong I am!!!)  This morning when I awoke and read my devotional I realized God didn’t want me to feel anxious…He wanted me learn.  And learn I did!

The first thing I did upon waking was make one of two phone calls.  The first phone call was to mom.  Guess what she was doing? Getting ready to go play golf! Is God not so good? He is so very faithful! I was able to tell I love her and how blessed I am to know she is one year out from her ordeal.  AND – she is 100%! God is so good!  Wow is all I can really say!!!

The second phone call was to dad.  I blubbered a little bit with mom and more so with daddy.  I remember so vividly crouching down on the floor in one of our back bedrooms when I took ‘the call’ from dad last year.  Mike sat beside me with his arm around me.  He knew it wasn’t good.  This years call was the opposite. Yes, there were tears, but tears of joy. This ‘call’ was happy! God has been faithful!

So what did God teach me? Well, after making the phone calls I had my breakfast and read my devotionals.  I have three books I am reading out of and would you believe ALL three spoke in some way to this day! The messages were clear.  First, from Jesus Calling:  The first sentence: “Let ME help you get through this day.”  The last sentence: “Thank Me for each problem you encounter, and watch to see how I transform trials into blessings!”  Wow!!! This year has been a year of transforming trials into blessings!!! I have had a front row seat between Boston, Mom and Mike. :)

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Second was from Daily Devotions for Die-hard Fans-Arkansas Razorbacks(This devotional is awesome and all SEC teams have one…just an FYI!)  The title for the devotion was Memory Loss.  Within the devotion he writes:  “Memory makes us how we are.  Whether our memories are dreams or nightmares, they shape us and to a large extent determine both our actions and our reactions.”  He continues, “God uses memory as a means through which we experience spiritual revival.  To remember is to keep our faith alive!”  He was referencing the Lord’s supper and the importance of remembering Jesus.  We had to remember Jesus during the whole ordeal with mom.  He was our strength and our hope.  The memory of today shows God’s faithfulness!

The last devotion book was Praying God’s Word by Beth Moore.  The last scripture she used is one I reference a lot, but one that gained a whole new meaning to me this last year.

Hebrews 12.1-2

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

The journey we started as a family on June 12, 2013 was a tough one.  One of the hardest ones I have been on in my life.  The uncertainties, the fear, the doubt, the emotions, and the helplessness all led us to one thing…God! He helped us lean on Him and one another.  The memory of today was not to be dreaded but to be celebrated.  It gives us a chance to really look back and see how far God has brought us!  He helped us see the importance of today…the importance of relationships…especially the one with HIM which leads to eternal life.  He helped us see the importance of prayer and of hope! Our faith is what brought us through.   My life verse sums it up:
Hebrews 11.1

11 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

We could not see the end.  Now we can.  We hoped and had faith His glory would be seen.  We are blessed the outcome was what it has been – mom at 100% – we know His glory would have been seen with another outcome as well…but boy, are we thankful He chose this one!  As our family verse states:

Romans 8.28

28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

He had a purpose in the events that happened on June 12.  He is still fulfilling that purpose.  The memories of today help us continue to have faith in the one true God! He is alive and overcame death so we too can be alive in Him.  My prayer for all reading this is that you too will experience the one true relationship that leads to eternal salvation – the one with Jesus Christ our Lord.  We would not have made through this last year with the many ups and downs without Him.  Our faith is what sustains us and gives us peace and joy in ALL circumstances.

1 Thessalonians 5.16-18

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

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Mom ~ We love you so much! We are all so very thankful God chose you for us! We are also thankful for the amazing spirit of perseverance and true grit you have shown us over this last year.  Here’s to making many more memories on our trail of blessings and faith!

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