SO much on my mind these days…popping in to start the week with a post full of thoughts on clean eating, intermittent fasting, body image and keeping things in perspective. Before I jump in, here’s a quick look back at our weekend:
Friday: Stayed home with a fun homemade meal and a movie: poached salmon (used this recipe – the one with the white wine – that turned out great! Easy and delicious for my first-ever salmon recipe!) with french bread + olive oil/balsamic vinegar for dipping, cave aged gruyere from the specialty cheese shop, roasted asparagus + broccoli and red wine/pale ale for her and him. Oh – and a side of “War Horse” – not my favorite movie, but not a dud either. 😉
(Yes, I did wear my Five Fingers in the house and during the movie – gotta keep strengthening those feet/leg muscles!)
It was a wonderful chill-out night after a long week at work for us both and for Mikey with his first week of Master’s classes! Fun to just sit back and enjoy one another without thinking much about work. 😀
Saturday: Woke up, worked around the house and then headed up to Red Deer, Alberta (where my best friend was born, coincidentally!) for our friends Jamie and J.P’s wedding! Although we don’t have any pictures of the event (camera battery dead and we simply took the moments in rather than documenting them), we had a great time together meeting new people, seeing their families again, and celebrating this couple. We met them through the young adult cancer community and they (including their families) have been through so much – both cancer and otherwise. They have an amazing story and it was a huge moment to witness where they are today versus where they were when we met them. It was beautiful, fun and worth the drive for sure! We skipped out on the dancing at home, getting back to Calgary around 11:30 pm and hitting the hay around midnight.
Sunday: Morning service at church (so great to be in that community again after virtually a summer away on trips/the mountains! Great sermon too) followed by working at a coffee shop all afternoon. I planned workouts, finished up some course work to renew my PT certification and Mikey got some great studying and assignments complete. After a trip to the grocery store, some food prep for the week (lean beef chilli with lots of veggies, Gina’s paleo banana bread, Tina’s paleo morning glory muffins, packaged up leftover foods for lunches), and some Skype calls with family, we’re calling it a night! A great, low key weekend full of fun moments and relaxing moments. No workouts this weekend – just some good down time for the body and soul. 😀
How was your weekend? Did you rest or get some good training in? Any good recipes to pass along or fun celebrations you enjoyed?
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In other news, life has been good but busy lately. I feel like I can’t complain because we are surrounded by people much busier than us, and the truth is, our lives have been very different from many people’s as our path has been anything but conventional. From Mikey’s cancer diagnosis to working on a boat in the Caribbean after his treatments for a few months to working in ministry, starting our own non-profit and personal training business, working for free and pursuing our passions, we’ve spent a lot of time together and also been able to have a lot of fun and adventures while building into others for our “jobs.”
We’re entering a phase where it’s important for us to focus on saving money and working hard in a bit more of the “North American” mindset for several reasons. Either way, it’s lead to more focus, less free time, and longer hours for us both, especially with Mikey starting classes for his Master’s program while working at the same time. But every time I’m busy, I just think, “Thank you, Lord, for the blessing of work!” and really do try to keep that in mind. I do love what I do as a personal trainer but find it draining come the end of the day after small talk, being “on” all day, and focusing on others’ goals and motivating them. I’m a bit of a slug at night because of this, but it feels good to work hard!
Because of the “slug factor,” it’s important for me now more than ever to make sure I’m eating clean. I mentioned recently that I’ve been reading lots about intermittent fasting (IF) and since that post have been doing one 24 hour fast a week plus the “lean gains” method of fasting almost every day (which is a 16-18 hour fast, including sleeping, with an 8 hour feeding window). (There are many links in the article I posted linked above, but here are great IF 101 and IF 201 intro articles that I encourage you to read – definitely challenges what the fitness industry has claimed for more than 20 years!) It’s been great because I’ve learned to listen to my body more, stopped snacking mindlessly or worrying about being caught at work or out without food and been much more relaxed about my eating. My cousin Becky’s wedding is coming up in 2 weeks (ahh! So soon and so excited!) and I’m the maid of honor as well as MCing the reception with Mikey, so I’d hoped to look and feel my best for the fun event. However, during this time of IF, where you’re obviously creating a calorie deficit, I haven’t lost anything. In fact, I’ve gained several pounds! I have a few more pimples too, and I’ve generally been feeling just not that great in my own skin. It may only be a few pounds and perhaps others can’t notice, but you know how you feel when you’re just not where you want to be? Yeah, that’s where I am.
Just wanted to be real with you guys – everyone struggles with body image – how they look, feel, etc, even if they “know” that health, fitness and beauty is much deeper than appearances! – and it’s not a fun place to be.
So…I’ve decided to stop weighing myself. I’ve been more experimentally weighing regularly because of the fasting (which I read tons about first and slowly began implementing into my nutrition lifestyle as I learned more) and have only been seeing increases or very small decreases. My plan is to let it go, keep eating clean and continue the fasting while listening to my body and not checking the scale for affirmation that my “experiment” is “working.”
I thought it was important to be transparent and share where I’m at – I’ve been a bit discouraged about this recently and want to focus more on what’s important in life and not let toxic thoughts enslave me.
II Corinthians 10:5a reads that we are to, “…take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” In other words, we need to not be passive about the thoughts that come into our minds but instead take them captive and surrender them to Jesus. That goes with all those thoughts that our minds run away with, and for me working in the fitness industry and also writing a healthy living blog, my thoughts often are those in the fitness realm.
Let’s take our thoughts captive this week, surrender them to Christ, and remember what’s truly important in our lives and focus on that – living in balance for the right things. Eat clean, keep training hard (or else why train at all?), support Mikey as his wife, stay focused at the gym, invest in those around me…all while taking every thought captive. Anyone care to join me? I’ll also be doing 100 kettle bell (KB) swings every day for the next two weeks – just a quick metabolism booster and total body move so that even on the days I’m not working out I’m in getting in some fast movement that works me from head to toe!
Thanks for letting me share. 🙂 I appreciate honest feedback about where you’re at, if you can relate to my struggles, and how you take your thoughts captive. To God’s glory and to a fresher heart and mind I write these thoughts and love that you’re a part of my journey along the way!
Have a great week, friends. Live well & be well (and swing those KB’s in good form!),