This challenge has been such a wonderful experience; I really can’t believe that the time has gone by so quickly! I can honestly say that I was able to meet all of my goals and have gotten into a nice, healthy routine of exercise, mindfulness, and better nutrition.
- I am back into my pre-pregnancy clothes!! I would still like to lose about 5 more pounds but I feel great!
- I have completed a bucketful of blood work and met with some great specialist that have provided my husband and I will all of the information needed to finally make a well-informed decision on whether or not to have another baby… not to say that the decision has been made but we now have all of our questions and concerns addressed
- I have also talked with some amazing counselors at Holt International down in Eugene and feel good about having some adoption options available to us as well
I absolutely will continue on with my daily Dixon routine – I have grown to love my afternoon break and so appreciate that this challenge has allowed me to finally get over there and find out what all Dixon has to offer!! And I have found that being mindful of what I eat has really changed my food preferences overall – I don’t crave the greasy or overly sweet items any longer and I just feel so much better about myself at the end of the day when I know I have had my servings of fruits and veggies.
The people who have done this challenge with me are all amazing! I feel very fortunate to have met and been able to work with each and every one of them… I have no double that we will all keep in touch and be there to support each other as we continue on in our wellness journeys.
Just a quick note… had an off week last week; was home sick with a stomach bug on Monday and Tuesday and then had a large collaborative proposal due on Friday so didn’t make it over to Dixon all week =(.
But… it was a beautiful weekend; we worked in the yard or with our honey bees all weekend long soaking up as much sunshine as possible and I was back over to Dixon today.
So, here’s to a better week!
What a glorious weekend – we really took advantage of the nice weather! It all started with a trip to the Saturday market downtown. I adore the Corvallis Saturday market and was looking forward to some yummy baked goodies for breakfast and fresh, Oregon grown, strawberries (nothing tastes the same so I don’t even bother buying others which makes strawberries a very special spring treat)! We purchased 2 pints that were almost gone before we even got home!! My daughter, Akila, and I also decided it was the perfect time to make the first rhubarb cake of the season… and you can’t leave the market without salad greens; isn’t spring wonderful!!
They always have great activities for the kiddos too – Akila got to build a birdhouse that was inspected by one of our very own city inspectors (too cute – she built her 1st one last year).
I year or so ago I read the book, “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” by Barbara Kingsolver and was amazed. For one year, their family lived solely on local foods and foods grown by themselves… if it couldn’t be produced in the neighborhood or in their own garden, they went without. I have always wanted to live that lifestyle but like most everyone else, I have become too accustom to eating what I want, when I want regardless of the season, where and how it was raised and how far it had to travel to get to me.
This week, take some time to hit one of the local markets and enjoy all that the Willamette Valley has to offer us – especially this time of year. We live in a beautiful place surrounded by a lot of amazing people.
Well at lot has happened since I last posted an update – it all began when we decided we needed to move; the location of our old house just wasn’t good for our family… too much industrial agriculture and the associated chemicals were around for our personal comfort and after 3 years we finally decided that enough was enough. Everything that happened next is a bit hazy… we decided to move, found an amazing little rental and were packing up all within a matter of days! Needless to say, things have been a little crazy =). But, we are now in the new house (although still living out of boxes) and are really comfortable in the new location. Funny what life has in store for you most of the time.
Through all of the chaos, I did manage to make it to Dixon ever day I was on campus – it was a much needed stress release and brake from “it all!” I figure all the packing and lifting of boxes was exercise enough when I didn’t make it to campus =). My body sure felt it! We are now located right in McDonald forest and have amazing hiking/biking trails right out our front door – so no excuses not to get out and get some family fun time in!!
I do have to mention that all of the safety talk on campus this last week reminded me to do all the important check-ups at the new house: (1) smoke detectors, (2) fire extinguishers, (3) make sure we have good emergency plans in place.
Take care – Liz
One of my goals for this challenge was to incorporate more fruits and veggies into my daily meals – fruit is not so much a problem, but I never eat enough vegetables!! I enjoy raw vegetables (love a great garden salad) but am not the biggest fan of cooked vegetables.
I believe I have mentioned before that I am incredibly spoiled and my husband does ALL of the cooking at our house… but, I do the grocery shopping and try to plan at least some meal ideas. I have made a point to always buy enough fresh veggies to make a large green salad at the beginning of the week; biggest challenge is to actually make the salad up on Sunday so you just have to grab what is needed throughout the week!! I challenge those of you out there to do the same… even if you just have a small amount at night; at least you are getting a good serving of veggies for your day! You just feel better when you eat better.
Now, back to my issue with cooked veggies… many of you may already know this trick but I use it on myself – you can hide just about any vegetable in tomato sauce. If you have picky kiddos (or if you are just one big picky kiddo like me) cook up some vegetables and puree them in with your favorite tomato-based sauce. My husband throws all kinds of good-for-me stuff in our spaghetti (mushrooms, peas, beans, carrots, you name it!); many of which he knows not to tell me about until AFTER dinner. =)
I know, I know – pretty pathetic for a 34-yr-old to be so picky!! Oh well!
Have a great week everyone! Liz
I have to admit that I really enjoy the quiet of campus during Spring Break – today Dixon was delightful, nearly empty. I meet two wonderful ladies at the gym today; one from my team (Abbe) and one from the competing team (Teresa). It is so nice to have such a great group of people to work on your goals with – yes, even those from the ‘other’ team =).
Hard to believe we just finished week 10 today and are already halfway through this challenge. The sunny days mixed in here and there have been a great inspiration to get outdoors for some “active rest” days on the weekend.
My daughter wanted to practice riding her bike WITHOUT training wheels on Sunday – it was adorable! She was terrified but yet couldn’t stop smiling at the same time. Needless to say, there will still be lots of practice days before she is ready to go on her own; glad that spring is officially here so we can spend more time outdoors enjoying all the beauty that Oregon has to offer.
Here’s to living like a 5-year-old this week! Liz
The indoor triathlon yesterday was so much more fun than I ever imagined!! I have to admit that I was nervous coming in for this particular challenge… I don’t mind exercising on my own but doing it with people watching seemed a bit scary. But, both teams were a great inspiration and it was a lot of fun having the opportunity to get together as a large group again. I have to admit, that I didn’t do the swimming event but I really wish I would have; it had to have been the hardest part by a long shot!! Everyone who participated did an amazing job.
So… the challenge has helped me to grow. Yep, that’s right – I have grown taller since the PowerUp Challenge began. I went in for a follow-up doctor appointment last Thursday and I had grown over an inch. I had them measure me twice because it didn’t make any sense to me until my doctor asked if I had been stretching more lately… YES!!! So, for all you ladies in your early to mid 30’s and starting to shrink (like me)- start stretching. (The benefits of stretching are truly amazing.)
My post baby-loss checkup also came with lots and lots of blood test but sounds like we won’t know much about the results for several weeks. I still feel that I am more at peace now, trying to focus on my health and the fact that I have a beautiful, healthy girl (who turns 5-years-old on Wednesday!!) Regardless, it will just be nice to know what, if anything, the blood work can tell us.
This challenge has already helped me change many life-style choices. I feel more at ease, life is still incredibly stressful but I am OK, and I really look forward to my break mid-day to go to my exercise class or over to Dixon – the physical aspects are a huge bonus! My friends and family have really noticed a difference; people stop to tell me I just look healthier & happier.
Life certainly isn’t perfect (not by a long-shot), but it isn’t too bad either.
I got to see two groups of people this weekend that I haven’t seen in awhile: (1) my bunko girls and (2) my family and I have to tell you that I feel like a million bucks afterwards! It had been at least 1½ months since I had see either group so they all really noticed a difference in my appearance.
I know I have said it before, but I will say it again- this journey is so much easier with the love and support of all your friends and family surrounding you. I am ever grateful for the people in my life – I am a lucky girl!
It makes the tough times that much easier when you are able to share the burden. Don’t get me wrong, I still have tough days when I feel that there can’t possibly be anyone else out there that could understand my particular pains… but I know that I have people around me who will just hold me and let me cry and I know that it will get better. Find the people who make you happy and safe and hold on tight!
Going through this challenge, I am ever impressed by the resources available to both students and faculty – so much more than I had ever realized!
We have been meeting weekly with CAFS and although this resource is only available to students they are still a wealth of knowledge and resources for faculty/staff. If you aren’t utilizing them, please do. I am really enjoying our weekly group sessions and it feels good to listen and share things… I have been teamed with a great bunch of individuals who are all caring and truly compassionate.
I have also had the opportunity to have met with a personal trainer over at Dixon and I absolutely loved every bit of it. I have recommended it to all my coworkers. It just feels nice to get that individual attention and to have a work-out routine tailored to your individual needs. And I am sure that I am not the only one out there intimidated by all the equipment over in Dixon… it was great to have someone able to show me how to properly use them. Remember your form!
I am really beginning to notice the benefits of a healthier life-style:
- I find I enjoy my time with family more (probably because I am not as stressed and irritable)
- I crave healthy foods and find I don’t even want the extra sweets that were common place before
- I had to go shopping at Good Will this weekend to get more transition clothes… feels GREAT to move into a smaller size
- I am enjoying my time – the time I dedicate for myself and my fitness goals; it is great to get over to my FSF class or over to Dixon and just let all the stressors disappear for at least the lunch hour =)
So, here’s to another week of healthy living!
It’s hard to believe that we have finished week 5 already. This challenge has been going by quickly for me but I fully expect to hit that wall at any time now but am hoping that I will have a good enough routine going that it won’t be too difficult to get over that hurdle!! It may be a bit easier for me because although I exercise regularly and do watch what I eat carefully I don’t beat myself up for having that dessert on the weekend and I keep the weekends for family time… we make a point to get out and be active but don’t stress over getting some serious cardio or strength training in.
This week’s challenge focused on self esteem… I have never really felt that I had self esteem issues but I must admit that it is pretty difficult to dress down and exercise with all of these beautiful young college girls at Dixon! But, good for them!! I hope they keep up the routine and never have to struggle with getting back in to the exercise routine.
We were asked to complete the following positivity statements – at first glance I thought this would be a piece-of-cake but it was really much more difficult than I originally thought to come up with the sentences:
- I am proud of the fact that… I elected to make a positive change in my life, to find ways to improve myself physically but also work on ways to overcome my current mental demons. I am also proud that it has led my husband to also make a positive change in both aspects as well.
- I am good at… being a mommy and supporting my family!
- One of my strengths is… staying motivated and enjoying a good challenge.
- A positive thing that I’ve learned about myself through this challenge is… that I can do it! I can find the time for me and not sacrifice my family time. It feels good to have a weekly exercise routine and to know that I am eating healthier.
- I rock because… I feel OK with who I am!
I encourage everyone that reads these blogs to also complete the positivity statements; I guarantee that it will make you smile =).