Investing in me

swimLately I have been thinking about life. Ha, when am I not, truly! A thinker by nature, I am constantly pondering things. But there are times in life where things just come together, like a puzzle piece. Up until not so long ago I was in survival mode, coping with what life was throwing at me. Not sure how to describe this in words (perhaps it will come to me in words and I can write about it later?), but my world and life have changed so much this past year. Despite the challenge I face now, this has been the happiest, most consistent year of my life. It has been relaxing and fulfilling in many ways, a reprieve from the things that faced me. When starting this blog my intent was to have it be  about my journey of health. I’m still not certain what it will look like, but the important thing is I have my goal in mind.

Today I swam for 20 minutes. Now, to some of you that may seem meager, but it was a huge accomplishment for me today, a celebration for sure!  I am celebrating the small steps 🙂 Let me share with you why (in part) this was so great for me today.

Nearly a year ago I found out I had adrenal challenges. Losing my hair in large quantities, hot flashes, low energy, and a slew of other symptoms. Blood work was taken at this time and a saliva test revealed my cortisol levels were not ideal. Was told that exercise was something that could impede my adrenals from healing. This left me with tears, as running was my outlet. Having just moved to a beautiful state, I wanted to get out and enjoy biking, hiking, running, etc.

For the first time in my life I was scared to exercise, knowing I could be doing more harm than good. That feeling is one of the worst feelings I have experienced. I knew that at one point my body was very capable, capable enough to complete a marathon and ROTC training. How I arrived at this point I am not entirely certain. There are some factors I know have played into it, am still trying to understand and wrap my head around it all. During this time I walked and kept up with my two charges, this was the extent of my exercise for much of this past year.

There is so much information out there and weeding through it is challenging. I can say that exercising prior to diagnosis had me so lethargically tired that I could hardly keep my eyes open (I would sleep a solid 2 hours in the middle of the day (after a workout) and wake up feeling awful.). It made sense to me that my body was not able to exercise intensely, but what to do?

Without going into great detail, the support that was initially guiding me with all of this, suddenly changed communication and cooperation.  To be frank, there it seemed like there was a cookie cutter solution to my issue even though I was communicating things weren’t working for me. With much time and and money invested, I initially was upset with the lack of help/support. But I realized two things, I could be upset and do nothing, or choose to find something that would work for me. I chose the latter. Looking at the positive things that had come from this experience; I learned gluten was not doing me a great service, that I had adrenal issues, and that exercise must be approached with caution. While it took much research and time, there are some options for me!

I continued on the diet that was suggested, took SOME of the supplements that were recommended, changed how I thought about things and how I processed stress (as exercise was a big stress outlet for me in the past).  ‘Changing things from the inside’ out has been my motto. I believe that true changes come first from thoughts. I also removed several stressors from my life….and things slowly began to improve.

Well, I’m happy to say that this past week I enrolled at a gym here. The gym is minutes from my house and it is fantastic! Its big and open and has a great vibe. People there are accepting of one another, friendly, and not cliques. Each time I am there, I walk away with a smile. Over the past two weeks I have been swimming slowly and paying attention to how my body is reacting to the intensity and times I choose to swim. On days I work late I go to enjoy the hot tub, sauna, and steam room and take in the wonderful vibe of life and vitality the people have to offer.

There is a journey yet ahead that I am not certain what some of the steps will look like. I will continue practicing patience with myself and take each day as it comes. Certain my goal is attainable; I have every confidence  that I will reach my goal. . Heck, I ran a marathon years ago and have come through some great challenges, so whats a small health challenge?!

Thankful, blessed, motivated,

Sarah 🙂

swim quote

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‘Late night’ thoughts

Why does writing seem to come and go? Certain I am not the only one with this challenge. I have 3 blogs and find I don’t write on them as much as I’d like to. Anywho, the clouds amazed me as usual today. It’s like a love letter every single day I just will never tire of seeing them.

blog post clouds

 Tonight I am inspired to write. I have much on my mind and it is 10:30 here, much later than I usually lay my head on the pillow. So here is my day in bullet points and a few pictures (recipes and thoughts to follow in later posts.).

  • I became a member at a great gym here, this has been a year in the works (more on that later)
  • I’m excited I am finally able to work out without being so tired, yeah! (still taking it slow but progress is happening)
  • Appointment on Thursday to asses where I’m at and put a plan in place
  • I prepped all my food for the next three days (at least)
  • Working on some new goals (bucket list may follow soon)
  • The church I attended today seems to be a good place for me, that’s also been a year coming!

Here are some pictures of my food prep from today, perhaps this is why I  my roommate called  me Betty Crocker today?

Quiche-Breakfast for days already made :)

Quiche-Breakfast for days already made 🙂

my favorite quick salsa

my favorite quick salsa

 

swiss chard

swiss chard

 

salad prep for the week

salad prep for the week

 

Quiche-Breakfast already made, just heat

Quiche-Breakfast already made, just heat

 

swiss chard

swiss chard

 

beginnings of swiss chard makings

beginnings of swiss chard makings

swiss chard swiss chard2

What was a highlight from your day? I’d love to hear in the comments below.

Sarah 🙂

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Butternut squash, Quinoa, Chicken Stew

Hard to decide what to post first as I have been trying out a plethora of new recipes these past few weeks. Now I have plenty of pictures and recipes to share so I will hopefully be ahead of the game for posting 🙂

When the weather is a bit colder there is nothing quite like a hearty warm stew or soup. Ran across this recipe on Pinterest and thought I’d give it a try. It did not disappoint. This soup is very filling and gave me enough to freeze and eat as leftovers during the week (I’ll let you know how it freezes in a later update). What I liked about this particular dish is that tasted even more flavorful in the days that followed.

Image

Here is what you will need:

  • butternut squash
  • chicken broth
  • chicken
  • olive oil
  • yellow onion
  • salt
  • fresh garlic
  • dried oregano
  • can diced tomatoes
  •  quinoa
  • kalamata olives
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • fresh parsley

Click on this link to get the recipe (Learning the best way to credit people for their recipes so I will be linking to the recipe until I learn how best to do that. If you have an idea what is kosher for this in the blogging world let me know 🙂 )

My Tips: I steamed my butternut squash whole in about 1/2 in. of water before cutting it. Found it to be easier to cut this way. Used chicken from a chicken I had baked earlier.

Enjoy!

Nanny G

Did you make this recipe? If so let me know in the comments below how it turned out and any tips you have for it.

What would you like to see as a next recipe or topic? Something sweet, savory? (If you would be kind to leave me a comment below, I will seriously consider your thoughts.)

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New beginnings

Hello all!   0725111111_01

In a way this is a new beginning for me (at least in the blogging relm). This journey of life had it’s beginning over 30 years ago, and that in essence was my true beginning. But this ‘beginning’ journey is something new. Something I hope to portray in my blog posts here in the next few weeks. I am constantly learning new things to better my life and quality of life and would enjoy sharing that knowledge with you.

I have read and spoken with many people about health and wellness and find the information out there to be abundant but confusing (at times) to read through. This past week I have tried many new recipes and posted pictures to my instigram account as well as Facebook. The responses I have received made me realize that many are on this particular journey as well.

I have two other blogs which represent one of my passions and gifts in life, working with children. This blog I created but haven’t started yet (March of 2013) because I was pondering what to put here. After moving last week I realized another of my passions is food and health. Thus, I am planning to use this blog as a sounding board for my thoughts of what I learn along the way. It will be simply me; homemade cleaners, delicious healthy recipes, thought provoking articles, etc..

This is a big step for me, opening up about my own health and struggles. As a human I have often worried what others may think, but more importantly I would like to help and be helped, which ultimately inspired me to start this blog. We live in an independent, individualistic society, which I do not believe necessarily benefits our health. In part this is why I have chosen to reach out via blogging to create a community of support.

A little history: Upon moving to Colorado I saw a nutritionist and discovered (not much to my surprise) that I have adrenal challenges. This makes working out a challenge as I often find myself so lethargically tired after that I sleep for 2 hours!? (for a girl that loves to run and ran a marathon years ago, this has had its tearful moments). Also found out that I am gluten intolerant (although tests came back as negative, it is thought to be a false negative. But this is a post for another time?) Thus, much of the recipes I post here will likely be GF.

My hope is that you will either follow or join me on this journey! Lets weed through the array of confusing information together and find wellness, health, peace, happiness, and wonderful recipes along the way! 🙂

I welcome comments and will approve comments which add to discussion in a supportive and uplifting manner. Is there a recipe you have wanted to tackle but haven’t found the time or patience for? A question about health we can research together? Pass it on and I may try it out, or read up on it,  and post results here (I enjoy cooking during my hours off …hint, hint 😉 )

To my health and yours!

Nanny G

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

0714111106

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