The Year of 30 – Fear Facing

This morning I was sitting at my desk going through the stacks of cards I received for my birthday.

I hate my birthday, bad things happen, and this year was no different. As I reflected on this stack of cards, but more importantly who they came from and the words inside, I’m thankful. Often, when things are imploding around us, we tend to forget that we matter to people.

I had a really, really hard time turning 30. It felt like I was no longer “young”. I felt like I had accomplished so much between 20-25 and not so much between 26-30. I mean when you graduate 3 times in a 3 year span, it is kind of hard to beat such accomplishments again. 

So as I was turning 30, I reflected on the goals/aspirations I had that had not yet been obtained. My dream of being a nurse practitioner (yes, more school), has not yet been obtained. My dream of being a wife and mother has not yet come to fruition. I hadn’t traveled as much as I had planned. In many ways I still felt unsettled, a lack of stability. I also reflected on what the last half of my 20’s was, and what it was surprised me. It was a lot of healing from damaging relationship of all kinds in my early 20’s. It was also a lot of making a career for myself, which included surviving the night shift and the endless hours of anxiety a new nurse goes through. They were years of self discovery and self reflection. They were years that have brought me to where I am today, and for that I am thankful.

So last week as I faced turning 31 and parts of my life were in shambles around me, I actually didn’t struggle. Because if I’m honest, my 30’s have been off to a great start with loads of adventure. Also, I trust that my dreams will come to be when the time is ready, and with the right people and the right school programs. I have a peace about trusting in the timing to be right, and less of a need to get everything accomplished NOW.

Over the past year I went to Costa Rica and faced my fear of heights by jumping of the side of mountains to go zip-lining  and I would do it again in a heart beat.

I dated guys that are completely out of my normal and learned a great deal and have great memories as a result.

“Leadership isn’t a skill you have, it is a skill you learn”

After a great deal of wrestling over the decision and praying, I took on a management position at work. It hasn’t been easy, actually far from it, but as my wise little brother told me “Leadership isn’t a skill you have, it is a skill you learn”. And everyday, I am learning this more and more. But, I have to say, when someone says “my boss” in reference toe me, my immediate response is “that’s not me!”… and then I realize, actually technically, yes it is.

I faced a lot of fears this past year both personally and professionally. I feel like my word(s) for the year of 30 was fear facing and as I enter 31, grace is what resonates. Grace for others. Grace for myself. Grace for where I’ve been and where I’m going. But most importantly sitting in the beauty of the grace from my Heavenly Father – knowing that I will never be enough but through His grace, He is enough for me. There is a freedom in knowing I can’t reach the state of perfection I’ve longed to reach for so long, but in Him I am fulfilled. My job is simply to walk in His grace and be the best me I can be. So 31, let’s do this.



6 Tips for Beginning Runners

I am not built to be a runner. I don’t have long legs and a great stride. I make running look hard. The truth is, it is hard. At least for me. I know a lot of people who it is not hard for. People who have been pounding the pavement for years like they were born to do it. I bet you know some of those people too. And I bet they intimidate you.

I used to be like that. I used to see people running as I drove past and thought, “I could never do that. I can’t run.” I was wrong though. I can run. I made a choice to try. I decided to put in the effort and work it took to become a runner. I still can’t run long distances, but I can walk/run/jog for a lot of miles.

One of the hardest things for me was getting started. It was deciding to go from a walk to a run. But thinking back over it, there are some tips I have for people who want to start running.

Tips for Beginning Runners

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Before you go:

Fun Gear. Fun and comfortable clothes you want to put on are key. Make yourself believe you are going to have fun. Or at least you are going to look good while you try. If you get the clothes on and lace up your shoes, you have won half battle. Now you are dressed and ready to look good!

Fun Music. Whether it is upbeat pop music, hip hop, rap, hard rock, country, classical, any kind of music that gets you going and makes you want to go, listen to it. There are many apps you can use, like Pandora or iTunes radio, or you can make your own fun playlist.

Stretch and Walk. Before you leave stretch! Look up stretches online if you need some suggestions. And do a warm up walk. Don’t just run, walk for a few minutes to get your body all warmed up and ready to move.

Pick a Program or Schedule. If you are looking for an easy starter program to help you get to running, try a Couch to 5k program. These type of programs will tell you when to walk and run to build up to doing a 5k (3.1 miles). Personally, I prefer programs that tell me just how many miles I should do to train for a race. For example I am now using a training schedule to get me prepped for a 10-mile race. It gives me three running days with the miles I should do and two cross training days each week. It’s a personal preference on what type of program you like. You can always experiment and see what you like.

Do Not Compare Yourself. One thing I did in the beginning was look at other runners and think “I can’t run as far or as fast as them, I must be doing something wrong.” But the truth is, my ability and fitness level is different than everyone else’s. You cannot compare yourself to anyone else. Just go out and do what you can do. And if that means you can only run two blocks and then have to walk, great. But keep going. In the beginning I could literally only run one block, then walk one block, and I would just rotate those. Now I can still only run about a mile, then have to walk for a little bit, and can run again. But I get my miles in. I do my training and I keep going.

Find a Partner. Like any exercise program, having a partner or someone to keep you accountable can be a benefit. If you need someone to say “Hey, get your butt up and do this!” then find someone to help you out and get your butt out the door.

If you want to be a runner you can do it. It is going to take commitment and effort, but if you want to do it, you will. And here’s a secret, those people you see running who look like they have been doing it forever, they are nice people. And they are encouraging. I have never met a runner that said, “you need to go faster” or, “you aren’t trying hard enough!” I have met so many who are encouraging and will motivate you to no end.

So give a try. Lace up your running shoes and get out there. What do you really have to lose?

How I will Chase 2015

Did you read Erica’s post on choosing a word to inspire your year? If not check it out here. I love this idea and just reading hers made me want to chase the year too.

Chase Hope

So I thought I would let you in on what I am going to chase for 2015. And go a step further and let you in a little on how I plan to chase some of these things. So here goes…

1. Healthier Eating – I addressed a lot of this in my post Back On the Wagon. Just getting down to eating cleaner and less processed food.

2. Give More – I want to give more of myself to people. I give a lot to my children and husband, which fills my heart with joy. But I know that now that I am no longer attached to a baby constantly, I have the time and ability to give more of my time and myself to things like volunteering and helping friends. I plan to be more involved in our church and really become vulnerable and closer with friends.

3. Physical Challenges – My biggest physical challenge is coming up in 4 months, the Tinker Bell Half Marathon. And on top of that I want to challenge myself to complete 100 miles of walking/running in a month (I have yet to choose the month, but I will). I also want to sign up for more fun runs that include obstacles to be challenging and fun.

4. Grow Closer to Christ – I want my children to be able to see the love that God has for them through me. To do this I need to become closer to Christ so I can be more like Him. I want to show the love, kindness, generosity, and patience that He has with us everyday.

5. Save Money – My husband and I both know we want to start saving more money and are working on plans to save monthly for things like Christmas and birthdays. Also to start saving money to one day (after Navy retirement) buy a house.

I challenge you to chase this year. Chase the things that you want to accomplish. Find even just one thing to actually go after with all you can. Come up with a plan to do this and be intentional with your plan. Don’t just say you are going to workout or spend more time with your family. Plan out your workout days and family fun days. I challenge you to truly ‘Chase 2015’ with all you can!

Week 6: Halfway there…

I would be lying to you if I told you this challenge hasn’t been hard.  I have relapsed into my caffeine addiction.  I am eating a Vanilla Drumstick currently.  Why? Because I can, dang it!  Yes, I do know it isn’t even 10AM.

This week I was able to get some exercise in which helped keep me motivated, but the weather has shifted and so has my mood.  It is getting chillier and my allergies are starting to be weird.  It isn’t so ideal to being cheerful and willing to get my bazooka in gear!  It really becomes quite the opposite.

I have still been mindful of food options choosing (most of the time) the healthier option.  I have been exercising self-control more frequently.  There was a container of candy sitting on the table that I just didn’t touch.  I chose to get just the chicken sandwich not the whole meal.  Good bye french fries…sigh.  Please know I say that with a heavy heart.

I am struggling to find the motivation to keep going with this challenge, but I am already 1/2 way there!  I just have to keep going…I must.  It is like a mini marathon, get to mile 10 and you will be fine.

Week 6 Progress…

Week 6: height 4,8″; 101.0lbs.

Week 5: Still Alive…

This week was a little better although I still am tweaking my schedule.  Trying to find time to juggle, balance, and maintaining sanity is simply where I am at right now.  Each day is a new day.  Each day I must take as it is and not try to get too far ahead of myself.

For those of you who don’t know, my coffee love runs incredibly deep.  I have chosen to give up Starbucks for morals and health purposes.  Not that I don’t love their mugs, coffee flavors, or the perks of being a Gold Card Member since 2011, I just know it would be best if I didn’t have a reason to over indulge.

In addition to my break-up with Starbucks, I have tried to cut down on my caffeine in-take as a whole.  I am choosing healthier options like water infused with lemon or lime, hot tea, or every once in a while an iced black coffee.  Due to this change, however I have sorely crashed.  I get home and sit….and then I am just done.  DONE!  Is this a sign of getting old?

I have been doing more research on healthy food items that I can pack for lunch.  I am looking for better ingredients and over all better food for my body to process.  I found a new soup that I like by the brand Pacific Organic Rosemary Potato Chowder.  It was a really nice little lunch.  I poured half of the container and saved half for later.  I also found these chips that were really good too.  A new find, Lundberg Redwood Smoky BBQ Multigrain chips, were a tasty inclusion to my lunch.  Even though this still isn’t the best for my body to process, it was still better than other choices. They had a different taste to them, but over all they left me satisfied.

Motivation at this point in time is just simply staggering.  My girl Rachel and I walked two different paths to which we did really well. In just over an hour walked close to 4 miles.  We pushed ourselves and that part made me feel really good.  Personally, I did continue to meet two goals this week.  One goal was to run over a mile consecutively.  I ran for a total of 1.21miles.  I also wanted to have another day of over 10,000 steps on my pedometer.  I was over 13,000 steps!  I was really happy about that.

Last night, of all nights, I came home with the intention of running.  I came home with the intention of taking a brief nap and then getting my bum up to go workout.  Well that brief nap was 2-1/2 hours long. Needless to say, I needed to nourish myself with dinner and finish a few projects at the house.  I did go with my mom to the grocery store to get some exercise.  It was more than I would have gotten sitting at home!

I still slept like a rock and went to bed before my usual time.  I am emotionally exhausted, physically exhausted, and really trying.  This effort was not wasted, I assure you.  Check out my weigh-in!

Week 5: height 4'8"; weight 101.5lbs
Week 5: height 4’8″; weight 101.5lbs


Fringe Lose to Win 2014

At my salon, we are like one big family.  We all take care of one another.  We support, encourage and share in community with one another.  A few of us were talking about doing a fitness challenge to encourage and promote healthy lifestyle adjustments.  Our solution?  Fringe Lose to Win 2014.

Here are the rules:
-$25 buy in by 8/22
-Weigh in every Friday morning by 10AM (pic of feet on scale with amount sent to a neutral person and that is not posted for others to see)
-Start Date: 8/22-11/14
-Each week, if a gain is noted, $5 will be added to the pot
-Winner determined by the participant that loses the highest percentage based off initial weigh in

Given the criteria above, you can decide how you are going to set and achieve your goals.  For me, it isn’t necessarily about the weight loss so much as it is to maintain and get in shape again.  You know, make places on my body (that aren’t supposed to be jiggling) firm up and tone up….; My last dessert;  We all know that this didn’t help my cause….

In order to achieve my goals, I have a little criteria of my own.  Me and some of the other stylists at the salon are using an app called My Fitness Pal.  It is a really good tool I can use to track what I am eating, my workouts, how much water I am drinking and what types of foods am I eating.  I have also purchased a Pedometer that connects to MapMyWalk.  I chose to get one that I could sync to my phone and track my daily activity as such.  It shows me roughly where I am at and how I could do better.  I need that accountability.

Before Picture; 8/22 Weigh in
Before Pictures; 8/22 First Weigh in

I have started a week early as to slowly ease into a routine which will allow for me to have success.  Eating out less, drinking more water not sugary drinks/pop, making better food choices.  Past my initial weigh in, just simply to get me started, I am not weighing myself until Friday.   I don’t let the number control me.  It is a good measure though to help me know where I should be though!

8/22  4’8″  105.0 lbs   Weigh in….eeek!

Observations?  I eat way too many carbs and not the good kind.  I don’t eat enough vegetables.  I don’t eat enough protein in my daily in take for what my body needs.  I am not getting enough cardio workouts.  And most definitely not drinking enough water!  All of this is about to change as I embark on this fitness challenge.

Stay tuned!

Friday is Meant for Music…

There is nothing better than going on a nice summer ride with the windows down.  The wind is blowing in your face with the music in the background blaring loudly.  It is such a glorious free feeling when the sun is out and you just can’t help, but get your groove on!


So today I may or may not have been caught singing in my car.  I politely smiled back at the awkward gentleman in the car beside me (what, you have never seen a girl who thinks she was a rockstar?  psh)  and continued with my jam….as you all should know Friday is meant for music.  I have a soundtrack with eclectic and some meaningful music you all should check out.

1. Nightmare and the Cat-Blackbird Smile This fun little tune has a  good beat in the back beat.  It pumps me up.  This Neon Trees like band has a lot of variety of songs along the same lines and this song just makes me want to dance with my arm in the air.  Fist bump, oh yeah!

2. Jukebox the Ghost-Somebody My brother introduced me to Jukebox the Ghost.  They are a phenomenal Ben Folds Five-ish band that totally speaks to me.  I love the pop chords on the piano and the upbeat rhythm makes me feel alive with movement!  It is so hopeful and it speaks so much being a single…when is it going to be my turn?  No….but seriously!  Plus, I secretly want to be one of the dancers in the video…Charlie Brown anyone?

3. Spoon- The Underdog The song is a great reminder that you should never discredit anyone, especially the underdog!  They have to work the hardest to get to where they want to be.  If you are cocky, on top of the world, or are complacent with where you are living…WELL my friend you will not survive in this ever evolving world.  You have to be able to reinvent yourself from time to time.

4. Robyn & Royksopp-Do It Again  This is a good dance song.  Get your glow sticks ready…the repetitive lyrics and rhythm are catchy.   Perfect song to get you revved  up for a night out with the girls or any sort of dance party you may want to have!  Go ahead…listen to it and see what you think!

5. Something Corporate-Punk Rock Princess  This little throwback became my inspiration.  I am not sure why I love this song except when it was released I was in high school.  It brings back some pretty fond memories.  It was my AIM screen name back in the 90’s.  WHOA flashback!   Whenever I am ready to stroll down memory lane, Something Corporate is one of my many goto’s.

Whatever songs are on your soundtrack, choose to jam and have fun listening!  If you want to sing….then, sing!  If you want to dance…then dance!  These are the songs that inspire us.  These are the songs to which we are motivated and can relate.   Whatever music you choose,  don’t be afraid to get caught singing/dancing!  The other person’s reaction is priceless!

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