Saturday, November 30, 2013

Trotting with the Turkeys


This year for Thanksgiving I chose not to head north- it wasn't an easy decision but with Christmas break only 3 weeks away it just made sense- to not have the turnaround time.  So, I decided that I would sign up for a local Turkey Trot 5K.  Some things to note- it was COLD!  About an hour before race time the temp was 25 degrees- after the race, the temp was 23!  I had not run a race since August!  For whatever reason this fall seemed to be a bit lacking in races (or ones that were affordable), so I didn't run in any (or if they were available my schedule didn't allow for them to happen).  And, due to the weather (rainy and cold) I had been struggling in finding time to run outdoors so I had been running on the treadmill.  Oh, and I still had the residual coughing from the bronchitis and Tuesday morning I woke up all congested (I thought it was possibly due to the crying jag I had on Monday but it's still hanging around today- Saturday- so I'm thinking not!).  Anyway, I was supposed to do this with a couple of friends- one of them wasn't feeling well and ended up not being able to participate but the other one- bundled up with me and headed over there.  It was cold but as I told both of them- I am trying to become a healthier person- I NEEDED to do this- to prove something to myself.  I had let my being sick, my schedule, and everything else, factor into my lack of exercise and lack of running.  I was determined to not let the cold and my cold factor into it as well.  I needed this to take a step back in the right direction and say- I can do this!  I WILL do this!

As you can see below I finished (and a side note- these pictures-ugh- they just show me how far I still have to go since I am back where I started- makes me sad and brings tears to my eyes).  And, I finished strong- I am not where I was back in the spring when I was close to 34 minutes but I have made improvements and as I run more- I will get stronger, I will get a little faster, and I will set goals!  I have a race in 2 weeks- my goal is to be this time (and I would like to beat last year's time which was 35:00 exactly).  If I am diligent, if I push myself, I think I can do- no, I know I can do it.  BUT, if it doesn't happen- at the end of the day I am still me and I gave it my all!

Monday, November 25, 2013


this is all there is to cling to- and yet somehow it's enough...

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

5 Years...

What does this mean?  Stay tuned- the story will unfold over the next couple of weeks (it's a story of looking back).  Just some things I have been pondering over the last week or so.

Monday, November 18, 2013

What's Ahead?

Survival is the name of the game folks- as I alluded to previously, there's a lot going on that I can't/won't discuss here but suffice it to say- some big decisions are being prayed about and dealt with.  On another note- I ran!!! Outside!!! for the first time in a month due to my schedule, the weather, and the bronchitis.  It was slow- painfully slow- but it happened and it can only go up from here- right?

I have 2 races coming up before Christmas (well, at least 2- there's a possibility of 1 more).  Thanksgiving Day will be the local Turkey Trot 5K.  I signed up for this one last year then plans changed so I didn't stay in town to run this one.  This year, I'm here and I'm going.  It's not going to be pretty- it's going to be slow but since I have pretty much started my journey all over again it's just how it is going to be.  I also am doing the Jingle Bell Run again.  I did this one last year- it's the fundraiser for arthritis and since I have arthritis in my hips and back I will support this one every year for as long as I am able to do so.  I have joined a "team" this year in support of a little girl with arthritis.

I have plans to do the local New Year's race again (hopefully not in a cold downpour like last year) and then just a couple weeks later there's this amazing opportunity that has presented itself.

Did You Know:
  • There are estimated to be 27 million slaves worldwide.
  • This industry brings in $32 billion a year, and those numbers are increasing daily.
  • Reportedly, 161 countries are affected by human trafficking as either sources, transit centers or destinations.
  • 80% of trafficked victims are women. More and more young girls and women are being sold, trafficked, or forced into prostitution.
  • The average age of trafficking victims worldwide is 12 years old.
  • Every 120 seconds a child is sold into slavery - 30 per hour - 720 a day - 1.2 million a year. This is why we must take a stand now!

Knoxville is hosting a first annual Run for Their Lives 5K (or Walk a Mile in Their Shoes).  This race is designed to bring awareness and support to human trafficking.  Here in Knoxville we sit at a crossroads of Interstate 75 and Interstate 40 and surprisingly, it's more of an issue here than one would think.  Just last week there was a news report of a traffic stop here in Knoxville that led to arrests for this growing problem.  The race costs $24 and if you are local they would love to have your support!  If you aren't-check out the website and see if there's a race coming to your area.  You can see more info (or sign up to participate or volunteer) HERE!  I am volunteering beforehand and running the 5K myself.  I am contemplating whether I want to set up my own fundraising page or just try to convince all I know to sign up!  I have about a week to decide!  Firewall Ministries is one of the local ministries that will benefit from this run.  Here's the thing-the City of Knoxville told the coordinators not to expect more than 100 runners for this first one, especially for the middle of January.  They so desperately want to show the city leaders that we care about this growing problem and want to put an end to it and have so many more than 100 runners that they will be blown away!  Want to see more?  Check out this video below:

R4TL 2011 from Brentwood Church on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Continuing onward...

November 7 was supposed to be a blurb about "a day in my life".  Well, let's see- most days I lead a pretty boring life- I go to work and sit in a booth like a veal (name that movie- see the end for the answer).  Nah, not really but it is go to work, go home, try to find some oomph to exercise, work at home (lesson planning, working on assessments, etc), and try to get to bed at a decent time.  The only time I seem to turn the tv on anymore is Tuesday nights for Biggest Loser and Saturdays I will turn football on if UT or Ohio State is playing for the background noise (how many days until spring training and baseball season? LOL).  And quite honestly, that's all I really want to say about a day in my life.

November 8- 5 minutes about time...

Wow, this is a "timely" subject (pun intended).  So often, I talk about not having enough time to get a workout in, or to do this or that.  What it really comes down to are my priorities in my time.  We all have the same 24 hours a day, it's all in what we do with them.  Is it really so busy that I can't give 30 minutes to exercise?  Most days the answer is no it isn't (this Wednesday, the 13th and next Thursday the 21st are not those- I really won't have a chance because I am booked from 6;30 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. both days).  Today I left for work at 6:25 and got home at 5:30.  I threw a baked potato in the oven, changed clothes and put in a dvd (Jillian Michaels Shred it with Weights- ouch).  Today- I did not let excuses take that time away from me.  I'm done with that- my time is just that- my time...Time management is one of my weaknesses- I'm working on changing that.

November 9- 5 Favorite places to shop online:
Road ID (new colors for bands and little badges- yes please)
Amazon (who doesn't need more books LOL)
One More Mile (this is window shopping)
Fellow Flowers (love the new performance tees- wish they weren't $32!)
Teachers Pay Teachers (this is where I get a lot of my Teacher resources)

November 10- A time you felt unstoppable
I honestly don't know if I have hit that point yet... I think I am still working on getting there

November 11- 3 albums you would take to a deserted island
Mandisa- Overcomer (the "dancing" to the tunes would keep me sane)
Audio Adrenaline- Kings and Queens (ditto the dancing)
Colton Dixon- just because I like him :)

All caught up and this is where I will stay for a few days (the next few I don't really have anything to chat about LOL)

Oh, and the answer to the movie- While You Were Sleeping :) (one of my faves)

My next post will have a couple of cool things that I get to be a part of and am really looking forward to :)

Monday, November 11, 2013

A little Catch-up

This is a continuation of the post from Sunday evening- I'm on a quest to catch up and maybe even get back into blogging a little more regularly- probably not every day but I have missed it so here goes...

November 4 was to write for 5 minutes on Freedom.  I find it appropriate that mine is going live on Veteran's Day instead of the 4th (and it probably won't be 5 minutes).  Freedom has many connotations: the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action; liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of and so many more.

But what does Freedom mean to me?  Freedom means that I have been given the opportunity to live my life without fear.  My ultimate freedom is found in Christ- I know that He loves me more than I could ever fathom.  While that freedom is not always understood the bottom line is that it is available and it is free for us.  Freedom also is found in my day to day life.  A lot of those freedoms were given to me through the sacrifices of those who went to battle daily.  I have several veterans in my family and my scope of friends.  I hope that they know just how thankful I am and how much I don't take it for granted.  One thing we do at school is say the pledge.  I work to teach my students how to treat that act and give it the respect for it deserves.  Every time I say the pledge, I sing the Star Spangled Banner or God Bless America or watch anything to do with the troops my heart bursts with pride and thankfulness for those who have fought and are continuing to fight for those freedoms!  Please don't take them for granted.

November 5- My favorite recipe- this one is kind of hard because I tend to cook the same things over and over again but I suppose there are two that I really do like:

My typical breakfast meal is this Skinny Muffin in a Mug- this is just the quickest site I found with the recipe but I do usually add a little pumpkin (not necessary though), or some blueberries, and sometimes a few white chocolate chips.  I also throw in about a tsp of protein powder for a little added protein.  I eat it anywhere between 7 and 8 daily and it keeps me completely full (sometimes I am not even ready for lunch) until 11:30.  

Another fave is Turkey Zucchini Boats- Basically (since I can't find the recipe I pinned)- I cut and halve a zucchini (or two) and scoop out the inside.  I blanch them for a few minutes and then put them on a cookie sheet.  In the meantime I am browning some ground turkey, adding the cut up zucchini (from the middle) and usually some tomato sauce.  Sometimes I will also add some cheese and taco seasoning.  When it's all good and mixed I add the mixture to the zucchini boats and add some cheese to the top and stick it in the oven and bake at about 400 for about 30 minutes. has a great recipe to follow but I tweak it to make it "mine"

November 6-Five Fave apps (these are both on my iPad and my phone)
ESV Bible
My Fitness Pal
a local weather app
Target Cartwheel

And there you have it!  November 4-6!  Make sure you have thanked a Veteran today!
**I will probably do days 8,9, 10, and 11 for Tuesday morning and then the rest will be hit and miss for the month.  There are some days I love the prompt and then there are others where they just aren't "me".

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A Little of this- a Little of that

Honestly, this is one of those random posts that will have a little bit of everything. First off, what I have been up to- well, truthfully, most days barely keeping my head above water.  There's a lot going on professionally that I don't really want to go into here but suffice it to say THIS is truth right now.

  Oh because I forgot to mention that I was told last week- after a week of ridiculous coughing and no exercise that I have bronchitis with some wheezing so now I am using an inhaler when I have trouble breathing and I am bringing exercise back in slowly but really working hard to try to get it back.  I have set mini goals- I know that this should not be about a number, but in reality it is- I know how much I have to lose to be back in the healthy range so am setting myself some goals (and rewards) in 5 lb. increments.  

Let's see, what else- change- yep, things will be changing- maybe not now but I am now ready (and this is a personal change not a fitness related change).  It's one of those things that it's all coming to a head and for my sanity something has to change.  And, of course that change brings about a little bit of fear.  I keep holding on to the truths that I know and the promises from God- He will never leave me nor forsake me.  He is there with me- even to the very end of the age...

My last thing- this one is going to be kind of silly but there was a November challenge for blogging.  I obviously didn't do the first 10 days so I am going to attempt to condense them into a short blurb here:

Nov. 1- Best lesson I am learning- I am doing council time at Awana at church on Wednesday- my focus is thankfulness and gratitude for all that we have.  This is a lesson I have been learning in real time and just has really hit home for me.

Nov. 2- Favorite inspiring quote (wow- just one- LOL).  I come back to this one over and over (and I think I might have to do favorite quotes in December or something- I had a hard time picking just one!)

November 3- My 5 Favorite blogs- I broke these down into two groups so really I have 10:
Cycleguy's Spin- Bill Grandi (my dad- so this one was easy and tops on my list)
A Holy Experience-Ann Voskamp (speaks to my heart)
Holley Gerth- H.G. (another that often speaks where I am)
Proverbs 31- the daily devotionals are often very timely (I should also add I am a fan of Lysa TerKeurst's blog as well)
(in)courag- love this blog by various authors and a dream would be to someday write a post for them.

Health and Fitness:
Let's Talk and Walk- Glenneth (love the local touches)
Coffee, Scarves, and Running Shoes- again a local blogger and I love the local touches
Flaming June on the run- she is always encouraging
in Healthy Habits we trust- Alicia is also very encouraging and very real
Fitness, Health and Happiness- by Jill- always very informative

**due to wordiness I am going to work on a post for 4-6 for Monday afternoon, a post for 7-10 for Tuesday morning and a post for 11-13 for Wednesday (then I should  be caught up... LOL)