Weekend Health Journal!

weekend

Hi friends! Let me just start this post by saying that it is EXTREMELY difficult to eat healthy while on vacation. Like, seriously. :)BUT- I have done a pretty good job and have actually kept up with my personal goals while traveling.

I haven’t eaten meat since last Saturday, people. THIS IS A HUGE DEAL!

Remember my one year goal of becoming a vegetarian? Well, something just clicked in me once I really started to focus on my food by cooking yummy plant based recipes and I haven’t craved meat in a week. I even had the grand opportunity to indulge in fried chicken, sausage gumbo, and bacon this past week, (we are staying in community housing), but I resisted and ate things like this:

13267518_1763923797176247_800525491_n

Avocado on toast with soy bacon strips and a nectarine

13298200_502498873288075_1623799794_n(1)

Strawberry, spinach and cucumber salad with a Hawaiian roll.

*Disclaimer- I am not in my own kitchen nor do I have all the wonderful ingredients that I normally do at home so my pics this past week are not as beautiful as they are normally. I’m trying, though, so give me a little grace and I’ll get back to taking more beautiful pics once I get home next week, K?*

In terms of exercise, I have walked every single day on vacation. Sometimes, I walked with my hubby or daughter, but most days I just got up early and did it all by myself.Why? Cause my day always goes better if I workout first thing in the morning. Most days I averaged 3 miles but a few days I got in more mileage due to extracurricular activities like going to the zoo or sea world. I’ve been missing my walking buddy, Jenn, this week for sure! It’s not quite as fun talking to myself cause I already know what my responses will be. LOL (Come on people, let me have that one.)

13267615_794316264003136_551581603_n

Keeping it real with my no makeup, post workout selfie. 🙂 Gotta hydrate!

I also found another YouTube sensation that I love almost as much as my Mind Over Munch girl. Her name is Brenda Leigh-Turner and she has a website called Lean Secrets where she shares great fitness and nutrition advice. This girl knows her stuff, that’s for darn sure. Here’s one of her videos:

Lastly, I wanted to throw out some encouragement to those of you that are on your own #healthyover30 journey. (Yes, I know that you may be above or below 30 but you’re still welcome to join me!) I am learning that it’s more important to stick to a schedule then it is to kill myself a few inconsistent days a week in an effort to work off the calories I overindulged in the night before. Prevention is always better than a prescription, right? So, my words to you are simple:

crush

Whatever fitness or nutrition goals you have set for yourself, you will only achieve them if you stick to it. A really intense workout is fine and all but only if you do it regularly. Being consistent with your exercise is what works. Break up your routine and do different things at the gym but don’t let your feelings trump your efforts.

Results come to those who resist temptation and eat healthy regularly not just once in a while. Believe me, this has been a process for me. It’s taken me a long time to get to this place. But, I’m seeing and feeling results after only three weeks of my #healthyover30 journey!

Need some visual stimuli to keep on doing this #healthyover30 thing? Check out this amazing instagram page from @eatingbirdfood. Here’s one of her pics:

13248832_1606274526352597_1022572167_n(1)

A beautifully colorful smoothie bowl!

‘Nuff said? Happy healthy Sunday!

Weekend Health Journal and Tips!

Hey everyone! I promised you that every weekend I would update you on my health journey as I make some better choices. (Here’s the first post in #healthyover30 with that info.)

First of all, I want to share a life-changing video with you! It’s only eight minutes long and is so motivating towards reaching daily goals. The woman speaking is Terri Savelle Foy and she wrote a book that I read a few years ago called “Imagine Big.”

ImagineBig-Book

This book helped me see the importance in writing down my dreams and goals and living my life with a purposeful mindset. I highly recommend it!

Here’s the video from Terri:

I have started doing most of the things she talks about in this video and I seriously have never been so productive in my life. I have more energy and get more done!

Now, let’s talk about my vegetarian diet progression. I have become hooked on the recipes from Happy Herbivore. Take a look at some of the yummy things I have made!

13151002_1713072735584380_390573514_n

These are called Dragon Rolls and they are so simple and full of clean ingredients. I made my own sriracha hummus to drizzle on top! Seriously, good stuff.

13166979_1695604754039386_887504356_n

See that burger? It’s an illusion…there is no meat in that thing. I made it out of black beans and it was TASTY!!! I am feeling a difference, people. Whole foods really do make you feel whole. (I just came up with that right now! lol)

Lastly, I wanted to share a great resource with you. I just finished the book called, “The Brave Body Method.” It’s got so many practical and spiritual tips in it for losing weight and getting on track with eating and fitness. Not only is the book amazing, but the author, Eileen Wilder, has a website with free videos and printables as well. Check it out here!   She will motivate you and help you discover your own unique kind of beauty.

Thank you all for following me on this journey! If you aren’t already, come find me on twitter (@Nspiritandtruth) or instagram (HVheartsong). That way you can see what I’m eating throughout the week.

OH, and one more thing:

BBM15-Zigler

 

Healthy Over 30!

Healthy

Today is a health focused post! Each Sunday I am going to include some health tips from different people in the nutrition/fitness community that I have been following. Feel free to tackle a few tips this week and comment to let me know how they worked for you. I will use the tag #healthyover30 so go ahead and tag your instagram pics, facebook posts, blog pieces, and tweets with #healthyover30 if you’re joining me on this journey. Isn’t this fun? 🙂

Before I get started with the amazing tips I have found for you this weekend, let me tell you my personal goals for this season of my life. I am 35 years old (so not a young spring chicken anymore!) and I feel like I am now at a place where I need to need to go big or go home. My kids are getting more independent and I am finding myself with a little more time to be able to really focus on me lately. (Woo hoo!)

For the past month or so, my friend, Jennifer, and I have been meeting to walk or run about three to four mornings a week at 5:15 a.m. Usually we finish 3 miles. This past Saturday we did a little over 5 miles. We also get together every Monday night and take Zumba from this seriously awesome chick at the YMCA. Her classes have been a huge motivator for me in my recent fitness journey! (I am going to include her FB page link in the tips below so you can watch her videos if you want!) I have also, in large part to Jennifer’s influence, started taking huge steps in the vegetarian direction. She has been a vegetarian for the past seven years and has shown me that there is so much creative freedom in this meatless lifestyle. I am turning over a new leaf, friends!

Here are my current #healthyover30 goals: (Follow me on twitter @Nspiritandtruth)

  1. Get my Zumba instructor certification in August to start teaching.
  2. Run or walk 20 miles a week.
  3. Start eliminating meat from my diet in gradual progression from one day a week to seven days a week. (This is a year-long goal I’ve given myself.)
  4. Post daily pictures of healthy meal options through instagram for accountability. (Follow me at hvheartsong)
  5. Journal the highs and lows of this process every Sunday for you to glean wisdom from along with tips to stay motivated.  

Now, on to some fun links and tips for you to read or watch when you get some time!

Here’s the link to my fave Zumba instructor’s facebook page: https://www.zumba.com/en-US/instructor/Kylie_Edwards/75327

She has her playlist on there as well as step by step video teachings so you can learn the choreography. And she’s a bit spunky so she’s super fun to follow. My fave routine from her class is to the Fifth Harmony song, “Worth It”!  

This is my new favorite Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/MindOverMunch

This girl, Alyssia Sheikh, has some amazing recipe videos and workout tutorials on here. She posts new videos every Monday and Thursday with links to pdf files for the printable recipes. If you’re vegan, vegetarian, or a meat-eater, she is your gal! Take a look at her meal prep video: 

Wanna know my go-to healthy living magazine for recipes, inspiration, and fitness helps? Well, here ya go! Skinny Mom

Lastly, here is my empowering #healthyover30 song choice for that extra push to keep going on tough days.

I hope that you will join in the fun and set some #healthyover30 goals for yourself as well. If you’re not over 30, you can still join in the fun. Just comment below with your hashtag of choice linking to your personal goals page and I’ll follow and cheer you on! Have some fitness or nutrition advice that you would like to share? Comment below to let me know and we’ll be in touch. I love hearing about everyone’s goals and journeys. Oh, and don’t ever forget:

15

Healthy

How to Find Your Life’s Purpose

 

I made a list of twelve books that I want to read this year here. The January selection was “Chazown” by Craig Groeschel.

chazown3d550

Why YOU should read it:

Ever wonder what your purpose is? Do you question what you’re supposed to be doing with your life? Feel like you’re not really living up to your God-given potential? Then this book is definitely for you! “Chazown” will teach you how to discover your passion through a series of personalized activities that take you on a journey of self-discovery. Chazown literally means “vision.”

My Take:  

I couldn’t put this book down. First of all, the chapters are super short. Second of all, Craig Groeschel is a very witty writer who uses a ton of personal stories alongside humor to keep the reader interested. Lastly, the exercises that he encourages you to do really open your eyes to what you’ve overlooked about yourself or your experiences.

He breaks it down into three categories: Core Values, Spiritual Gifts, and Past Experiences. From these categories, you discover your giftings, beliefs, and personal timeline. Next, Groeschel leads you through the five spokes of your Chazown, which basically give you a plan of action. The five spokes are 1) Your relationship with God, 2) Your relationship with people, 3) Your financial health, 4) Your physical health, and 5) Your life’s work.

After you’ve completed these steps, you are guided through a process of writing your own purpose statement. Goals are outlined and resources are highlighted.

Personal Life 

Did this book help me refine my focus and get me on the track to fulfilling my dreams? YES! I have a list of things that I can clearly say I feel called to do with my life now because of this amazing book.

I couldn’t recommend this book more! It’s great for small groups and if you go to this link, there are video teachings and online tests that you can take to help you on your Chazown journey as well!

Proverbs 29:18 – ‘Where there is no vision, the people perish.”

 

 

The “Busy-ness” Trap

17333623885_f8cb98d876

It’s okay to say yes ALOT. It really is. Being busy is only bad when it’s not fulfilling or purposeful. When there is no greater purpose to the “busy-ness” it becomes draining and tedious. Doesn’t it?

But when we are busy because of a goal, vision, or shared interest, then it becomes life-giving.

Take my week. This is what is has looked like for the past 5 days:  Morning runs, home-schooling with the kids, online college classes, a lunch meeting with other women about leadership, an all day workshop with other worship leaders, dinner with girlfriends, blogging, practicing the piano, snuggle time on the couch with my husband, and a trip to the grocery store.

None of the above things are a waste of my time. They are all important.

Have I had a very exhausting week? Yes. Do I feel enriched, fulfilled, motivated and inspired despite the exhaustion? A resounding yes!

Why? Because I said yes to the important things. So, let’s keep the whole “being busy is a bad thing” in perspective, shall we?

The trick to this mindset is simple. Prioritize the exhausting stuff alongside the energizing stuff in order to maintain a sense of balance in your life. And make sure there is a reason behind what you’re doing. Doing something for someone else is fine and dandy as long as it doesn’t take the place of you taking care of you. (Obviously I don’t mean quit your job because you’d rather be at home binge-watching Netflix!)

Balance is really not as elusive as everyone makes it out to be. I promise anyone can find a personal rhythm that drives them to say the right yeses and no’s.

And when you do, your spirit, soul, and body will thank you for it!

 

 

 

Keep it Up

287666827_016dc60fe5

photo credit: A Brand New Day via photopin (license)

Consistency is hard. I really struggle with it. It’s hard because I have to make a choice between what my body tells me I need to do and what my feelings tell me I want to do.  Sometimes I have to block out my emotions all together to be able to stick with something for the long haul.

Take exercise. I have to separate myself from the dread that inevitably wells up inside of me at the thought of working out so that I can actually  do it. Don’t get me wrong, I love to run. I love zumba. I love yoga. But, the fact that my body is enduring some sort of physical resistance (a.k.a. cardio) keeps my butt on the couch more often then I would like. So, my fix for this lack of motivation? Set a goal so I HAVE to move my body.

Right now, my goal is to run the GoGirl half marathon at the end of March. I have run multiple races but have always had a running buddy with me. Last year was the first time I have ever run a half by myself. And, let me tell you, the sense of accomplishment and pride is so much better when you do it by yourself. 🙂 I had a goal and I finished it without anyone pushing me to get it done. That, my friends, was pretty satisfying.

I say all of this to get this main point across: Having a goal is a great motivator to get you out of your comfort zone and into the fast lane of life. It keeps you on track despite how you feel. And having people around you to support you and hold you accountable is definitely important, too. But, what I’ve come to realize is that believing you can do it is really 3/4 of the battle. If you can envision yourself accomplishing your task, you can do it (with or without help).

What is it that you are having a hard time sticking with today? Do you find yourself relying on your feelings instead of your reasoning? Decide WHY you need to be consistent. That is what keeps you going when you are having trouble continuing the race.

And lastly, finish. Whatever it is. Just do it until it’s all done. Don’t quit because then you will regret it. Maybe not the next day or the next month. But, one day, you’ll look back and say to yourself, “Man, I had the chance to do things different and I didn’t.”  Life is gonna happen to you whether or not you are doing anything with it. So make the choice to do something pretty darn amazing with it!

Comment below with a goal you have set for yourself this year! Thanks!

 

Want to Read With Me in 2016?

photo credit: Baddesley Clinton Library via photopin (license)

I LOVE to read. Almost as much as I love to write. And sing. I think the three habits/obsessions are tied, actually. Don’t make me pick just one! (Way to make me panic!)

Anyways, I thought I’d compile a list of twelve books that I want to read this year. Realistically, I will read WAY more than twelve books. That’s a given. But I’ve never really mapped out my reading in terms of a monthly schedule and review. This year, since I’m actively blogging now, I thought I’d do just that. Why not keep things interesting?

So, here’s the list. Mind you, these are not necessarily new books. Just ones that I’m interested in adding to my collection. 🙂 Some are fun, some are serious, some are controversial. My purpose is to learn something new about God, myself, and the world around me. Let’s see where this year of purposeful reading takes me!

January- Chazown by Craig Groeschel 

February- Love Does by Bob Goff

March- Live Love Lead by Brian Houston

April- The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah 

May- Wild and Free by Jess Connolly & Hayley Morgan   

June- Is Everyone Hanging Out With Me? by Mindy Kaling 

July- Savor by Shauna Niequist 

August- Girls Like Us by Rachel Lloyd

September- Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert 

October- Daring Greatly by Brene Brown 

November- Wherever the River Runs by Kelly Minter 

December- Powerful and Free by Danny Silk 

Feel free to join me! Just comment below my monthly reviews with a link to your own post about the book! I look forward to hearing from you!

Pep Talk Time

photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/85608594@N00/15087465094">Joyce Meyer When you are tempted to give up, your breakthrough is probably just around the corner</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">(license)</a

Nothing is going to stop you.

So get up even when you don’t feel like it.

Push yourself harder than ever before.

You can’t look at what happened yesterday, last week, or last year.

Keep your eyes glued to the road ahead.

Performance is never as important as dedication.

It doesn’t matter if you come in last place, just finish the race.

Noone can put limits on you.

So don’t listen to the negative talk (from others or yourself).

Everything you need to keep going is inside of you.

Give yourself the benefit of the doubt.

You were created to dream, explore, pursue, create, to RUN FREE!

What are you waiting for?

Personal Mission Statement

photo credit: Splash via photopin (license)

I’ve been looking at my foundation lately to make sure it’s not faulty. We all need to assess our values and principles every once in a while to check that they line up with foundational truth. The nitty-gritty of my core beliefs is found in why I’m here and what I’m doing with my time.

So I thought I’d design a personal mission statement as I finish up 2015 and start 2016. I need to start this next year right. Don’t we all?

I’ve picked a quote that sums up my focus for 2016 and then chose 5 “to do/be” statements that follow the theme of that quote. Feel free to follow my example and do this for yourself as well. It’s a great exercise in creativity and focus! Here I go:

“Be like the cliff against which the waves continually break; but it stands firm and tames the fury of the water around it.”
― Marcus Aurelius

  1. To be immovable in my commitment to my family above everything else- even if I really, really want to do it. If it takes away from my time with them (reasonably speaking), then I will choose my husband and kids instead. 
  2. To do only the things that add to my health, my happiness, my creativity, my purpose. I will say yes to the best things and have no guilt on my conscience for saying no if it is only adding “busy-ness” to my schedule. 
  3. To actively pursue relationships and opportunities that support my desire to help others who are struggling, desperate, overlooked, and hopeless. I will go looking for the weak and the wounded and purpose to love them to Jesus by helping them out of their pit. 
  4. To be consistent in my discipline, boundaries, and lessons with my children. I will be creative and thoughtful in my correction but always stay the same so that they can trust my response and be %100 sure of the rules in our household. 
  5. To live in a way that my faith is evident to all. I will choose to pray in the good and the bad times, speak the truth even if it’s hard, and give of myself to others at inconvenient moments if necessary.