Tuesday, September 29, 2015

{not much} training tuesday

Over the summer, I took a break from running. My training buddy and I hit the heavy weights in an attempt to gain muscle, using Jamie Eason’s LiveFit program. The first phase of the plan calls for no cardio, then a gradual reintroduction in phase 2. 

Sandwiched between the two phases, my cruise allowed for a week of activity but not necessarily exercise. The kayaking and the stand-up paddle boarding were done at more of a leisurely pace, instead of something which got my heart rate up or really fatigued my muscles.

Phase 2 called for lifting 6 days a week which made the scheduling of other workouts difficult. Even if I had been able to find the time, the workouts were such that my energy suffered as well. Jay and I played basketball in our community’s common area, but otherwise I didn’t get much cardio in.

Instead of progressing to the cutting phase of LifeFit, I decided my efforts would be better spent finding a routine I could stick with. Phase 3 of the program is very intense and is focused on leaning down for a special event. Looking over the diet plan to accompany the workouts, I knew I didn’t have the motivation to stick with it.

I switched to Body for Life, which involves lifting 3 times a week and alternates upper and lower body. Sprinkle in a few runs here and there, and I had a good routine going.

Until Europe.

Given the limited accessibility to electrical outlets to charge devices, I didn’t track every day/step we walked. I did, however, attempt to log at least a little bit of each town so that my Garmin log, and subsequent maps, would reflect our travel.

A rough estimation, I’d say on non-bus days we probably walked between 3-6 miles a day. Unfortunately I did no running while we were gone because I had neither the energy nor familiarity with the streets to pound the international pavement.

Paris offered a bike tour, but it was more a leisurely jaunt than a training session. Hiking the glacier at Jungfrau definitely got the heart rate up, but at only a mile or so each direction, it lacked the umph Jay and I are used to in a hike. The view, however, did leave me breathless.

 Photo credit: me or Jay. I can't really remember.
See those black dots on the lower right? Those are people. Seriously.

Upon my return to the United States, I brought back with me the bola. (Note: not actual Ebola, but rather the pet name I gave to the nasty infection clogging up my head.) I spent a week sleeping off my virus + jet lag, only reporting to my job for a 12 hours that week despite the stack of work awaiting me.

Errands filled up this past week –getting a haircut, catching up with my discipleship group, and of course the meeting I had with the associate pastor of discipleship regarding the not-to-be Sunday school teaching position.

 I’ve ran 4 times since I’ve been back from vacation, with my mileage totaling just under 16 miles. This includes my not-so-stellar 6 miler this past Sunday. I suppose you could consider this a 500+ word excuse as to why a 4 time marathoner had trouble with a run that lasted just over an hour. 

Thankfully my attitude stayed in-check during the run. It gave me confidence that if I have the follow through to complete a 6 miler in 80 degree weather, under hydrated and wheezing from the early-fall allergens then I can finish 13.1 miles respectably in 5 weeks.

What are you training for these days? 
Do you have any big events on the horizon – athletic or otherwise?

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Writing about writing

Hey there. Its me. Just blogging randomly off the top of my head. Those of you who visit my blog regularly know  the prospect isn't quite as scary as it sounds, but can be more difficult.

I've started and stopped this blog numerous time. Deleted text and pictures. At the moment, focus is my problem. And content. I suppose I've read enough about having quality blogs, so I worry that no one would want to read the crap in my brain.

But I'm doing this blog anyway. Sometimes just writing is what it takes to get my groove back. In all my prayer about what gifts I'm supposed to be using for God's glory, I know writing is one of those. 

Will I ever get to the point in my life where I can make statements like the one above and not feel as if I'm bragging on myself or being arrogant? 

So here I am, laying on a partially deflated air mattress, using a rolled up hoodie as a pillow. Metaphorically speaking. Here I am, a little deflated myself, but willing to pause for a moment to give you a picture into my world.

Do you have any tips for getting back to writing (or any hobby you've been away from just long enough to feel a bit rusty)? Do you prefer goofy randomness or an attempted to be focused?

Linking up with Jaime and the rest of the Stream of Consciousness weekend crew.


Thursday, September 24, 2015

When You Don't Even Get a Participation Trophy

Life has been a roller coaster this past month or so. First came the stress and excitement of getting ready for our trip to Europe, then of course the trip itself. With our tour group, Jay and I hit 6 different countries and a dozen cities in 16 days. Along the way I picked up a nasty virus, and like any good wife, shared it with my darling love.

The week we returned home was filled with jet lag, laundry, visiting the doctor, and sleep. Lots and lots of sleep. Just when I thought the excitement would die down and life would return to normal, last week a couple of big decisions about life and ministry were made.

Each of these decisions deserves their own blog, my heart is heavy and I don’t feel like I can truly do justice to the exciting prospect. Last week, Jay and I found and committed to buying a 5 acre tract of land near my family. The property is beautiful and everything we’ve talked about wanting for a home for the past 7 years. 

There will be plenty of time for squeals of joy and me telling you all about it, and I’m thankful for the opportunity. I would hate to miss out on praising God for such an incredible blessing. I just about guarantee by the time the house building process is over, you’ll be sick of me talking about the land.

In an effort to delay exploring my feelings regarding the ministry decision, I went back to reread old blogs.  With the help of my Bible study leader, I began pursing my spiritual gifts and how I could be used in the church. (Read my earlier thoughts here and here.)

On the 20th of this month, I attended my first Sunday school teacher training class. The associate pastor of discipleship handed out packets of information with both notes on teaching as well as a couple of documents of commitment for us to sign. My heart sank as I read the documents.

snip from a blog of mine earlier in the year

Turns out, I’m not Baptist enough to teach in this church. I want to choose my words carefully, because despite feeling judged and unworthy, I don’t want to be judgmental myself. Rather I don’t want to continue to be judgmental. I’m just very hurt right now.

Throughout the whole process, I feared rejection and prayed that my heart could handle it. I thought I was praying to guard myself when class started and I had few (or no) people joining me. Instead, I feel rejected by the church leadership. Please don’t get me wrong, the pastor never treated me unkindly. He stood firm in the standards set forth, but wanted to make sure I understood why.

Mostly I mourn the ministry which never got to see life. I lost hope, dreams, anticipation, and a love for the women I expected to minister to in the name of Christ.

 another snip from a previous blog

I’m very thankful to have had the support of my Bible study class, my small group, and my close friends. I spoke with several different people in an effort to get perspective. . Instead of chastising me, these ladies built me up with scripture and encouragement, so that I had the courage to stand firm in my convictions.

I feel like I’m walking away empty handed – no finisher medal or participation trophy. Empty handed, but not empty. My head is held high and my heart is full of the love of Jesus. I don’t know how He is going to use me in the future. However, I trust that this was the path He wanted me to travel. Please pray with me that none of this heartache is wasted and everyone involved will use it for continued growth in the Word and prayer.