Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Tuesdays on the Run: Warm Weather Running Tips

Good late morning, everyone!  I was planning on posting much earlier today, but Baby Fish has been a hungry little thing this morning.  It's nap time now though, so time to blog!

I'm linking up today with Erika, Patty, and April for Tuesdays on the Run.
Tuesdays on the Run
Today's topic is Warm Weather Running Gear and Tips.  Since all I've known is warm weather running thanks to living in Florida, I thought I'd share some tips for dealing with the heat and humidity while running.  Head over to any of the hosts' blogs to check out some great warm weather gear and other tips!

1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!!  
This tip includes a few different sub-tips.
-You need extra hydration before your runs when it's hot outside.  Make sure to up your water intake a little bit the day before a summer run.
-Plan your running route to include some water stops, or carry water with you.
-Make sure to replace your electrolytes, too!  Any sports drink will help replace what you've sweated out during a warm weather run.

2. Wear breathable, sweat-wicking clothes.
You're going to sweat a lot more during summer runs (duh!), so wearing cotton t-shirts is not the best plan!  You want to wear tech-material clothing, and not a lot of it!  My go-to outfit during warm weather runs is an athletic tank top and a Sparkle Skirt!

3. Plan to run early or later in the day.
During the warmer months, you probably don't want to be running during peak heat hours.  If you run early in the day, you'll avoid the sun, heat, and sometimes the humidity!  I often run around dusk, but which helps avoid the hot sun, but often times it's a lot more humid at that time.  Find what works for you, but do avoid running in the middle of the day.

4. Use a cool, wet towel.
Take one with you during your run, or have one ready to use when you get back.  This really helps you cool off during or after a warm run!  I got this idea after a race gave them out, and it really was just magical!  I love to put it on my neck, as well as wipe my face off with it.

Question for you: What are some of your warm weather running tips?

Monday, April 27, 2015

Life Lately

Hey everyone!  Sorry for taking a hiatus last week.  In case you missed it, we moved because Joe found a great opportunity to work as an associate chiropractor in south Georgia.  We just got Internet on Thursday, which made it pretty challenging to blog!

But, I think we have finally settled in, so I'm back to update y'all on life lately.  It's been a bit of a whirlwind, but here we go:

-Packing up a house and loading things in to a truck is difficult after having a C-section.  
Not only was I having to feed Baby Fish fairly often, but I really couldn't do much to help pack.  Not being able to lift more than 10 pounds makes moving really hard!  Thankfully, my sister-in-law Katherine came up to help us do so, and we had some of Joe's friends helping to load the truck.

-Before we left Daytona Beach, we went to a Daytona Tortugas game. 
We loved going to the Daytona Cubs baseball games for the past two years, so when they left and a new team came in, we had to see them before we left.  Baby Fish did great at her first baseball game, though I must say I was much more concerned about the fly balls than I have been before.  I didn't want any of them hitting her!

-We officially moved in to our new house last Saturday.  We had some help again in the form of one of Joe's co-workers and his brother.  My job was to direct where boxes were to go and start unpacking. Oh yeah, and feed Baby Fish (she was hungriest when we were trying to unload!)

-I already have a teaching job for next school year!  I interviewed last Monday at a local high school, and they hired me on the spot.  Awesome stuff!  Even though I won't start until August, I now need to start working on child care!

-My mother-in-law was here last week to help out.  

We spent the week unpacking and taking care of Baby Fish while Joe was at work.  It was nice to have an extra set of hands around with so much going on!

-We have an awesome park right up the road from our house.
It has a dog park, lots of fields, and a walking track.  Joe, Baby Fish, Tequila, and me went up there for a walk on Friday and had a great time!  I foresee many, many hours spent at that park in the future!

-My heart swells seeing Joe and Baby Fish together.
Seriously, so stinkin' cute!  He's pointing to the TV so that Baby Fish watches her first WWE Pay-per-view event.  So funny!

-Baby Fish is awesome.
Not only is she adorable, but she really is a great baby.  She is becoming more alert, so it's pretty fun to watch her take in the world around her.  She's also good at sleeping at night (thankfully!), and breast feeding is going well.  She's got some pretty funny faces that she makes, too.
Oh, I just love her!  Being a mom is pretty awesome.

Well, I think we're all caught up!  This week should be a more regular blogging week, so I'll see you tomorrow!

Question for you: What have you been up to lately?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Big News!

Hey everyone!  Sorry I've been MIA for about a week, but there's a good reason!
We moved!

We are now Georgia residents once more as of Saturday.  
We are busy getting settled in, which has proven quite interesting with a newborn!
We won't have Internet until tomorrow.  I just wanted to stop by briefly to let y'all know the news!  Hope you've had a good week, and I will be back to a regular blogging schedule on Monday!

Question for you: When was your last move?

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Remembering 4/16/07

Today is always a tough day for me, and it kind of snuck up on me this year due to Baby Fish's birth last week.

8 years ago today, the shootings at Virginia Tech occurred.  I was in the building next door in class and had no idea anything was happening until class was over.  This event rocked the Virginia Tech community to its core, but out of such a horrible tragedy, we came back stronger than ever.
Two years ago, I shared about all of the heroism and positivity that came from this tragedy.  Last year, I talked about how this tragedy isn't forgotten, but it doesn't define Virginia Tech, either.
At the memorial held one week after the shooting
Today, I'm just going to be silent and remember.  Remember the lives lost and what they meant to family, friends, and the Virginia Tech community.  Remember how precious life is.  Remember to tell those I love what they mean to me.  Remember the kindness of the entire country and world reaching out to us after the tragedy.  And to remember that "we will prevail."

I think this quote from right after the tragedy sums up what I'm trying to say:
"I ask each of you to take the time to be a Hokie this week. Appreciate life a little more, take in every moment around you, count your blessings, tell the people around you that you love them, slow down, remember what's truly important in life. And live selflessly for those 32 that do not have that chance."
I'll leave you with the video of Nikki Giovanni's poem, read at the convocation the day after the shooting.  This gives me chills and makes me sob every single time I watch it.
neVer forgeT 4/16/07

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

WIAW #50: Newborn Edition

Wow!  This is my 50th What I Ate Wednesday post!  How crazy!  What better way than to the share my eats from Baby Fish's one-week birthday.  
Image Source
These meals are from Tuesday.  My mom is in town helping us with the baby, and she has been kind enough to fix our meals!  Thanks, Mom aka Nana!

Thanks, as always, to Jenn for the WIAW link-up!  Head over to her blog Peas and Crayons to learn more about What I Ate Wednesday and to check out what other bloggers are eating!

Cereal is still the norm around here for breakfast, and this week I've been eating Special K Protein cereal.  I love this flavor (brown sugar crunch), and it does a decent job of keeping me full in the morning!

After an appointment at the pediatrician (Baby Fish looks "perfect" according to the doctor and is already back to her birth weight), Mom fixed us a simple lunch of PBJ, baby carrots and Cheez-It's.

 Yum yum!  I also had a few Oreos for dessert.

Afternoon Snack
My snacks yesterday were in liquid form, as I drank a Vanilla Coke for a "snack" in the afternoon.  Apparently, the "pregnancy" cravings don't fully go away, and these were an impulse buy after seeing them in the store.  So good, though!

Tuesday's dinner was leftover baked spaghetti!  One of Joe's classmates brought over a HUGE dish of baked spaghetti on Saturday, and we had enough for a second meal on Tuesday!  Mom cooked up some mixed veggies to have on the side, which made for a delicious meal.

Evening Snack
I had another liquid snack in the form of cranberry-raspberry juice before feeding Baby Fish around 10pm.  Breastfeeding makes me thirsty (and hungry)!


Yesterday, we took a little walk around the neighborhood.  That's about all I can do right now, but it really is a fun way to get the whole family (including the pup!) out in the fresh air and getting some exercise.  Fun times!
Overall, I think I'm adjusting pretty well to life with a newborn.  She is just so much fun and really is a good baby!  It's so nice to have my mom here to help out.  We will definitely miss her when she leaves tomorrow!

Question for you: Have you had to deal with a significant life change like this?  Did you have anyone there to help you out?

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Tuesdays on the Run: Spring (and Summer) Training

Hey, everyone!  Happy...what day is it?  Oh yeah, Tuesday!  It has been so hard for me to keep track of what day of the week it is after being away from work for about a week and a half now.  An 84-hour hospital stay last week also isn't helping!  Plus, how can you focus on what day of the week is it when you have this sweet thing to play with?
One thing I've been thinking a lot about after having Baby Fish last Tuesday (other than Baby Fish herself, of course) is how excited I am to get back to my regular exercise and running routine!  Seeing others run races and meet their fitness goals during the break that I took has done GREAT things for my motivation levels!

While I do have some limitations due to having a C-section (more on that when I talk about Baby Fish's birth), I have started to plan out my training plan for the rest of the spring and in to the summer.  The big thing on my mind when creating this plan is getting my running base back and training for the Peachtree Road Race on July 4th!
Tuesdays on the Run
Spring training just so happens to be today's Tuesdays on the Run topic, so I'm linking up with Erika, April, and Patty to share my plan with you!

I'm going to break my spring/summer training schedule into three phases, so let's take a look at what each phase entails!

Phase 1: April 12-May 16: WALKING.
Because of my C-section, I cannot exercise for 6 weeks.  This includes lifting anything heavier than my baby and running.  However, I can walk and push a stroller.  SO, you better believe I'm going to take full advantage of that (and already have)!
My goal for this phase to walk for 30 minutes at least 5 times a week, increasing my walking speed every week.  I'm actually going to shoot for walking every single day, but I know that with a newborn, I need to allow myself some wiggle room.

I haven't run since the Daytona 5K on January 24th, so I need to get back in to just being able to run a mile or two at a time!  I don't know what my running ability is going to be like, so I'll need to take it slow when rebuilding my running base.

My goal for this phase is to run 1-2 miles 3-4 times each week.  I just want to get to the point where running 2 straight miles is possible, regardless of pace.  I will most likely use the Galloway method (run-walk-run intervals) to get to this point.  If the first two weeks go well, I may move on to Phase 3 from May 31-June 6.

The Peachtree Road Race is my second race of 2015, and I'm so excited to run it!!  It's a 10K race that's a huge Atlanta tradition, so it should be a great time.  Joe and I will turn it in to a race-cation by going to an Atlanta Braves game while we're there and staying with/visiting some friends.  It'll also be Baby Fish's first road trip!  I am slightly nervous about running it now that I had a C-section.  I'm not going to make it a goal race and plan to just enjoy the experience.  Even though I just want to finish the race upright, I still need to train for it!

My goal for this phase is to complete 2-3 30-minute training runs and 1 long run each week.  Training runs will mainly focus on a time limit rather than a distance and will be completed during the week.  I may include some speedwork into the training runs, depending on how Phase 2 of training goes.  The long runs will be on the weekend, and I will hit 6 miles before running the race on July 4.

Some Notes:
-Phases 2 and 3 will also incorporate some form of strength training.  I know that my core will need some work, so that will be a focus in both phases as I work on running, as well.
-As I mentioned in my 2015 goals post, I have heard that running can affect breastfeeding.  That's how I'm planning to feed Baby Fish for at least the first 6 months.  So, if running does cause problems for us, then I will have to put it on hold.  Baby Fish's health is much more important to me!

After this, I have my eye on some fall half marathons, and my goal of running the Richmond Marathon in November is still on my mind!  We'll see how things go with Peachtree before I 100% commit to the marathon.

Question for you: What does your spring training look like?  What do you do to come back from  something that's sidelined you from running for so long?

Monday, April 13, 2015

Baby Fish is Here!

It's a...


Baby Fish arrived on Tuesday, April 7th at 3:01 pm.
She was 8 pounds, 8 ounces and 22 inches long.
We stayed in the hospital until Friday morning due to a C-section delivery but have had fun at hone every since.
Mom, Dad, and Baby (and my mom, Nana) are all healthy and happy!  We are truly blessed to have such a wonderful little girl joIn our family!
I do plan to share about her birth, but for now, I have a sweet newborn in my arms to snuggle!

Back tomorrow with a running-related post!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Pregnancy Update: 41 Weeks + Getting Labor Going

Hi, everyone!  Hope y'all had a great Easter weekend!  Ours was spent with a lot of relaxing and waiting for Baby Fish, with a good church service thrown in there.  Our landlord/next-door neighbor invited us to her church, so we joined her and her boyfriend on Easter Sunday.
It was a good service with some great music!

Another exciting thing today: my "maternity leave" has officially begun!  I scheduled my doctor's appointment for this morning and just decided that I'd not go back to work after Friday.  And yes, I am still pregnant.  So, let's just jump right in to the pregnancy update, as there is some news to share!!

Pregnancy Update: 41 Weeks

How far along? 41 weeks (and 1 day)

Baby Bump progress: last baby bump picture!  Sorry it's blurry...

Baby's Size? a jackfruit.  Anywhere from 7-9 pounds and 20-21 inches long.  And by the way, this is a jackfruit:

Kristie and Joe found one in the grocery store last week and shared a photo with me :)

What's happening this week?  
  • Baby is still plumping up and hair and nails continue to grow!
Total weight gain/loss: 40 pounds total since my first doctor's visit. 

Stretch marks?: nothing new!  I learned this week, too, that the "stretch mark" on my stomach was actually just the line between my abdominal muscles being visible since my skin is stretching!

Sleep: Overall pretty good.  Just a trip or two to the bathroom each night and having to fight with Tequila to get my spot in the bed back!  

Best moment this week: FINALLY knowing when Baby Fish will come!  At my appointment this morning, the doctor talked about induction options and if we wanted to schedule one.  I am just SO READY to not be pregnant anymore, so we were able to schedule it for TONIGHT at 10pm!  I'll go in tonight and have a "pill" inserted that will help ripen the cervix (my cervix was effaced but only 0.5 cm dilated today).  Tomorrow morning around breakfast time, they will check dilation and then start the pitocin (induction medication) from there.  I really wanted to do things more naturally, but since things just aren't happening and Joe and I are going crazy just waiting, I think it's time we just get things going!  Hooray!

Miss anything?: Same stuff as last week: having lots of clothing options, having normal-sized feet, alcohol, sleeping comfortably, plus running and being able to sit however I want without the fear of swollen feet!

Movement: Yup, lots of it!  Still head down, though, so it's ready to make its way into the world!

Food cravings: haven't really had any this week!  I will say that I have DEFINITELY taken advantage of the "eating for two" thing, and I'm looking forward to not having that as an excuse anymore!

Anything making you queasy or sick: nope!

Gender: We'll find out when Baby Fish is born :)  So, so soon!

Labor Signs: Well, I thought my water broke on Friday, but that was a false alarm.  I also had some contractions that would follow a pattern for 3-4 cycles then stop.  Nothing other than that!

  • Swollen feet/ankles (and some finger swelling)
  • Feeling uncomfortable
  • Getting really anxious/nervous/excited/impatient about the arrival fo the baby!
Belly Button in or out? still in just a little bit

Wedding rings on or off? Off :( I miss wearing my rings and can't wait to wear them!

Happy or Moody?: mostly happy, but I have been feeling a little blah since the baby didn't seem to want to come out any time soon.  Now that we have an induction scheduled, though, I'm very very happy!

Funny moments this week:  The funniest thing was probably when the doctor checked my cervix on Thursday. He made a comment about how the baby was definitely sitting low, but when he checked dilation, his exact words were "Yeah...nothing's happening."  Joe and I were a little disappointed at the time, but after a while, we thought it was pretty funny that he responded that way!  This doctor has such a dry sense of humor--I love it!

Looking forward to: MEETING BABY FISH THIS WEEK AND NOT BEING PREGNANT ANYMORE!!!  Can you tell I'm excited?!

Exercise this week: Starting on Wednesday, I took a walk every single day (and even two on Saturday!).  Surprisingly, my feet and ankles haven't been as swollen, and I think I can attribute it to all the walking!  If only I had the energy to do that every day over the last month...maybe I wouldn't have been as miserable!

Baby Fish Feature: Getting Labor Going
Over the last week, I've been trying some of the old wives' tales that help get labor going.  While none of them worked (obviously), I thought I'd share some of the things I've done!  Maybe they'll work for some of you :)

Spicy Foods

I actually ate spicy chicken wings for dinner on Thursday night!  I NEVER eat wings when Joe goes out to eat them, but this time, I was willing to try it.  They were actually pretty good, but as I said, didn't start labor!

One of the reasons I walked so much since Wednesday is because it supposedly helps bring on labor!  Again, no luck, but I know both Tequila and I really enjoyed the exercise and the time outside!

Eggplant Parmesan
For dinner Friday, I attempted to eat eggplant parmesan!  It apparently is a dish that many women have eaten then gone in to labor.  Unfortunately, Carrabba's didn't have it on their menu, but the waitress got a good laugh out of it when I told her what I was trying to do.


Apparently, pineapple also helps start labor!  I ate a pizza with pineapple on it for lunch on Friday, and then at dinner on Friday I drank pineapple juice.  Good thing I like pineapple!

Again, none of these things worked for me, but I do know others that had success with these old wives' tales!  

Question for you: What are some things you've heard of that help get labor started?

Well, since I'm going in to the hospital tonight, I'm not sure when I'll be back on the blog!  I may have some time to get some scheduled posts up, but I also have things to do around the house before heading to the hospital tonight.  Be sure to follow me on Instagram and Twitter, as I am much more likely to update those with baby news!

Wish us luck!!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Friday Five: 5 Things I Will NOT Miss About Being Pregnant

As I near the end of my pregnancy (Baby Fish is still hanging out inside of me!), I've been pretty anxious and excited about NOT being pregnant anymore.  Don't get me wrong, I've had a pretty easy go of things.  I haven't really minded being pregnant, but over the last few weeks, I have become increasingly ready to get back to "normal."  I started thinking about things I really WON'T miss about being pregnant and thought I'd share them with you today!

I'm linking up with Courtney, Cynthia, and Mar for the Friday Five link-up!  Their theme today is Five "Good" Things (since it's Good Friday, after all!), and I think this post can fall under that topic :)

1. I WILL NOT miss...all of the attention.
I have never felt more "noticed" in my life than when I'm pregnant!  Sure, some of the attention has been nice (more people have held the door for me, I did get two free donuts at Dunkin', etc.), but sometimes it's a little overwhelming!
Image Source
All people talk to me about now-a-days is the baby, and I've had so many random strangers come up and touch my belly.  I'm pretty ready to get back to being a little more invisible and "normal", as well as having casual conversations about things other than being pregnant.
2. I WILL NOT miss...having an excuse to eat whatever/be lazy.
I'm sure this sounds really weird to most people.  You're probably thinking, "isn't having an excuse to eat anything you want and sit around a good thing??"  Well, I've certainly used this free pass over the last month or two, and surprisingly, I really haven't liked the results!!!

Sure, it's been fun to eat more sweets, but I've just felt a lot more sluggish and tired lately.  A break from exercising has made my afternoons a lot less jam-packed, but I've gained weight in my face, arms, and legs that I wasn't gaining earlier on in my pregnancy.  Plus, I've actually missed exercising!  I cannot WAIT to get back to running and returning to my gym classes (when I'm cleared, of course).

While I know I could choose not use to it as an excuse, I have.  I'm looking forward to not having that crutch to lean on when trying to make healthy choices.

3. I WILL NOT miss...the swollen feet, ankles, and fingers.

I've missed wearing my rings.  I've missed being able to sit however I want in a chair or on the couch.  I cannot wait until my feet, ankles, and fingers go back to their normal size!!

4. I WILL NOT miss...being unable to turn, bend down, or get out of a chair properly.

I've had a hard time with this because I'm a pretty independent person.  I had to get Joe to buckle my shoes for his graduation because I couldn't bend down far enough, and I really didn't like it!  I've had to rely on passengers (when I have them) to check my blind spot while driving because it's so hard to turn.  Getting up from the couch or a low-sitting chair is embarrassing because it's not so easy to do!  I'm ready to be "independent" and able to do the simple things I'm used to doing with ease again!!

5. I WILL NOT miss...the uncertainty relating to pregnancy.

Image Source
I've heard many stories about people being put on bed rest or babies coming prematurely.  I've also heard about babies coming 2 weeks late.  Throughout the pregnancy, I haven't enjoyed the "waiting game"--am I going to be put on bed rest?  Is the baby going to come early?  When is this baby finally going to come?  As someone who likes to know what to expect, I have not enjoyed all of the uncertainty.  While I know there are many uncertain things with a newborn, I think I'll feel a little more in control of that situation than the whole pregnancy thing.
And a bonus to end on a really positive note...

6. I WILL NOT miss...not knowing my baby!
Sure, I've felt him/her move around for quite a while, but I don't know the gender and I don't know what he/she looks like!  While we've gotten some sneak peeks thanks to ultrasound images, I'm so looking forward to meeting Baby Fish that I really won't miss not "knowing" him/her.  I'm also so excited to find out if it's a boy or a girl!

So, those are some things I will not miss about being pregnant.  Baby Fish, you are more than welcome to join us in this world whenever you want (preferably sooner rather than later)!!  We're excitedly anxious to have you, and mommy is excited to not be pregnant anymore :)

Question for you: Moms or moms-to-be: what do you/will you NOT miss about being pregnant?  Everyone else: What are you NOT missing right now?

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

SSMT March Verses and Reflections

Hey, everyone!  Hope you are doing well on this Wednesday.  I intended to have a WIAW post for you, but I only took a picture of yesterday's lunch.  Oops!  Instead, we'll talk about what I wanted to post on Thursday!

April is here, so I wanted to share the verses I chose to memorize for the Siesta Scripture Memory Team in the month of March!
Participating in the SSMT through Living Proof Ministries and memorizing 24 verses of Scripture is one of my goals for this year, and as I mentioned in Monday's quarter-year goal check-in post, it's only going so-so so far.

Here are the verses I chose, a little reflection on how things went, and what the verses mean to me!

Verse #5: Psalm 33:4 (NIV)
"For the word of the Lord is right and true;
He is faithful in all he does."
I was inspired to memorize this verse by a woman in my Bible study.  We are reading about how to better study the Bible, and we do so by reading Jen Wilkin's book Women of the Word.  Then, each week, we discuss some questions in groups of 4.  Well, this woman named Bonnie was in my group the second week, and she is so strong in her faith!  When discussing difficult topics, she always talks about the importance of prayer and that God is faithful, even if the answer to our prayer is not what we wanted. 

I believe this verse came up in our study, and when I heard it, I knew it would be one of my memory verses.  This one I have memorized, though it is not one that I think of often.  One reason for that is that I have not spent much time in God's Word lately, which is a shame.  I'm sure that when I do, this verse will be one that I think of when I read something that resonates with me or that causes me confusion.

Verse #6: Hebrews 12:1b-2 (ESV)
"Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God."
This verse may sound familiar, as the NIV translation of this verse is part of the header of my blog!  I really wanted to memorize this verse for the second part about Jesus.  Especially as Easter approaches, I thought this verse was a great reminder of the foundation of my faith.  That part that gets me is "who for the joy set before him endured the cross"...  Isn't it crazy that Jesus enduring the cross is in the same sentence as the word "joy"?  That just goes to show how much He loves us, that He would endure such a horrible death for us!

Unfortunately, this is one of the verses that I have not yet memorized.  I think the length intimidated me, and I know for sure that I was not prayerful in trying to memorize this verse.  As of now, I have the first half of it memorized and will continue to work on it during April.

I have already chosen Verse #7 to start April out right and spent time this morning working on all of my memory verses.  In April, I intend to make this practice more relational with God, as Beth Moore mentioned in one of her SSMT blog posts.  I think bringing Him in to this practice will not only help me memorize these verses better, but it will bring me closer to Him as well.  I mean, that's the whole point of this, so why have I been leaving Him out?!

Previous months' memory verse recaps:

Question for you: What are some memorizing techniques that you use?
They don't have to be Scripture-specific!  Any memorizing trick will help :)