So many people just do their workout and leave, but they miss one of the most important parts.... Stretching. When you workout, you basically bunch up and tighten your muscle fibers. So, it makes sense that you need to stretch them back out so that they don't get all out of whack. Also, most people have postural imbalances simply from day to day life. For instance, if you sit at a desk all day, you have tight hip flexors, which compress your lower spine causing low back pain. This also can cause knee pain. So, stretching for 5 minutes a day is awesome. Try it. They also say that people who stretch in the AM handle stress and anxiety better. 🙌🏻
I always focus on veggies and protein for dinner. I also usually cook my chicken breasts in large batches so that I can just reheat, add to whatever else I come up with and enjoy. This dinner took me 5 minutes.
I've been getting requests for more of my fitness tips. I'll be working to throw in some practical behind the scenes ways that I find balance in workouts, food, and my priorities.
Working out to me is more about being ready to serve God than how I look. I want to be able-bodied and capable to do whatever it is that God calls me to do. I strive for discipline, balance, and most of all, peace. For these reasons, I need to make them no-fuss, minimal hassle. The goal is to get it done and enjoy it as much as I can. :)
Here are 5 tips:
1. Plan ahead. If I don't know my workout plan for the next 4-6 weeks, I won't progress properly and will not see results. My July plan is to do a mix of Pilates, yoga, and barre. If you need help with a plan, head over and fill out my Fitness Community form.
2. Actually schedule it in your calendar. Pick the time of day and a backup to be safe. From my experience, if it isn't in my calendar I will make too many excuses and miss my workout.
3. Set a weekly workout goal. For instance, my goal for the month of July is 5 workouts a week. This way, I can work around my life's schedule and set a make-up day. Life happens.
4. Make it visible! I mark my workouts in my calendar with yellow washi tape. You can also pick a color marker. Some people like to pin their calendar to their bathroom mirror or wall, so that it is a constant reminder.
5. Try something new. If you consistently don't workout when you get home from a day at the office, then maybe you need to workout before work. Hate mornings? Me too, but would you rather feel better and more energized all day or dread going home and skipping another workout?
Do you ever feel like God is calling you to live smaller? To slow down with your worldly ambitions and just be present in all of the small, seemingly mundane details of your life? Do you ever feel like no matter what you do, it's not enough?
Well, you aren't alone. Lately, I've been seriously struggling with everything it seems. I'm exhausted, like go to the doctor and have a million tests done exhausted. I'm perfectly healthy. So, is it stress or anxiety or depression? Who knows. All I know is that I'm tired of being tired. I'm tired of not feeling successful. I'm struggling with reconciling where I am and where I want to be.
Okay, okay, before this turns into a pity party, I want you to re-read my last statement. "I am struggling with reconciling where I am and where I want to be." Do you notice all of the "I"'s in that sentence? Yeah, me too. Gut check: my life is NOT about what I want. God put me on this earth to bring HIM glory. My particular skills and wants and dreams, He gave them to me, sure, but when I make it more about my desired outcome than His outcome, we have a problem.
Often, I have moments like this and wonder how did I get so far off track? How did trying to serve Him turn into me chasing selfish ambitions? Well, I'm human and I sin, so there's my problem. So, now what? How do I fix this hole in my life and heart? How do I stop feeling unsuccessful, like a failure, or like I can't do it all? I breathe. I go and hold my daughter while she falls asleep and I pray. I don't know what to say, but I do know that He sees my heart and my hurt and my failings and loves me just the same.
So, maybe, you are feeling like you aren't enough or that you can't get it all done. Maybe you just want to cry and you know that you should be happy with all He has blessed you with, but you still can't fight that feeling. Well, sister, you are not alone. The enemy wants you to feel like you are alone, but you aren't. I am here with you. God is there waiting for you to go sit at his feet. So, let's go sit there together. Let's give up our to-do lists and dreams today. Let's just go bask in His nearness and breathe. He works all things for the good. He knows our hearts. He wants what is truly best for us. So, let's slow down a little today. Let's slow down, so we can get right with Him, and then we can speed up again. I love you, friend. I see you. You are not alone. We are better together, just like I was reminded this morning when my sweet friend sent me God's words of encouragement. So, let me share them with you...
"Your Heavenly Father knows your needs. He will always give you all you need from day to day."
- Luke 12:30-31
One of my very first jobs was serving at a Mexican restaurant in Louisiana. I loved it, but it did spoil me on good food. So, for years, I've avoided enchiladas and carne asada and shrimp fajitas, because nothing is quite as good. Well, a friend recently sent this to me and I fell in love.
Isaiah 60:9. 🙌🏻
I put on a swimsuit. I looked in the mirror and I criticized. I immediately saw a million flaws. I instantly went and put on a loose cover up and thought all of my hard work was for nothing. Then, I got to the pool and there were a lot of people there and I thought "no way. No way am I taking this cover up off and swimming." I felt insecure, ashamed, not good enough. Then, I looked at Calista; her perfect little face, baby belly, flawless skin, joy in her eyes, and I thought, for her I will do anything. So, I took off that cover-up, got in the water and watched her splash and squeal and love her first time in the pool. I forgot my body. I forgot my fear, shame, and insecurities. All I saw was God through the light in her eyes. Guess what, He is the light in my eyes too, and he's in yours. He makes you beautiful.
So, let's stop with this nonsense of not feeling good enough to wear a bathing suit. Let's recognize his glory in us and let's shine our lights so bright. Go make those memories with your children. Go laugh and frolic. Go forth and know that you are His and you are beautiful.
"Anything that reduces or replaces God is an idol." -Jennifer Rothschild.
Anytime we have a plan B, we are actually saying that we don't think God is enough. Did your eyes just bug out of your head? Mine did. Think about it though, God made us. He knows the days of our lives before we were born. Every time we choose to think that He doesn't have this under control, is when we place other objects, people, or status above Him. In essence, we create idols.
I struggle with the need for approval and not feeling good enough. It's a weakness of mine and one that I am praying God helps me through. When I seek approval from worldly success, from other people, from status symbols, I am telling God that his approval means less and that is so not what I want to do! You with me?
Our God is so big and his promises are true and his love is larger than we can fathom. So, today, let's remember that every time we create a plan B in our lives, we are diminishing Him and who He says He is. He deserves more from us.