So K - you're up first!!
This week was much busier than last week, thankfully. I moved in with J last Sunday and we just hung out that night, which was nice and it feels amazing to finally be unpacked after living out of my suitcase for almost 3 months. Monday J and I went to the Good News Center, a church about an hour from us. We got to talk to someone and girls and share the word with them and just kinda chat. I talked to one lady for a little bit who was a follower as well as her whole family, only she worried about her husband, who wasn’t bold about it. We prayed for him and kept talking for a while. After the meeting, some of the girls wanted to take pictures, so we had fun with that. Tuesday, we didn’t do a whole lot, just kinda hung out. That night I went to eat at Hard Rock Café with the Cs, which was awesome! I had a water buffalo hamburger which was really pretty good. That was my last time to see them. They left Friday morning early and they’re back in the states now. They’re son starts middle school next Monday, so keep them in your prayers as they transition and get back used to living in the States.
Wednesday was a very busy day for us. J and I went to Global Home in the morning and could only meet with the girls for a little while. We told em the bible story about Paul and Silas and they got to practice henna, which they really enjoyed. After that we went to the slum again and spent time with those sweet girls. They were so happy to see us. Many of them came in, gave hugs, and curled up in our laps, which was a lot of fun for us. Those girls are awesome. I always get so excited to see them and spend time with them. That night we went to bible study at our church. It was fun being able to spend time with people closer to my age, while growing closer to God. We read Acts 21, when Paul is on his way to Jerusalem to be persecuted, but keeps preaching and sharing God’s word no matter what. It’s so amazing the way God changed Paul’s life completely and then used him so greatly.
Thursday we just kinda hung out. J took me to this little café with free wifi (out internet has been acting weird) so we just hung out for a little bit. That night we went to her friend, R’s for dinner. R lives in what’s called a PG which stands for paying guest. It’s kinda pretty much a bunch of dorms. It’s a big building with little bedrooms, which fit 2 or 3 girls, with community showers and what not. It was pretty neat being there. It made me worry less about what my living condition will be like in college. If they can live somewhere like that, I can easily handle whatever dorm I’m in.
Friday we went back to Global Home to help them set up learning centers for the girls. We were there for a while and it was a little crazy getting there. It had been raining a lot and the road to get to the home was flooded, so no auto would drive back there and Jill and I had to walk most of the way. Not much fun, but we managed. That night R stayed the night with us. She’s vegan, so we tried making her an eggless cake. It didn’t quite turn out the way we planned, but hey live and learn haha. We had put it in too small of a pan and it just kept overflowing, so we had to take it out early. The edges turned out good, but the middle was all goo. We still ate and enjoyed. That night we all just hung out and watched a movie. Saturday, we had lunch with R in her office. It was all Indian food…not too bad, but pretty spicy and I don’t really handle spice too well. I just ate a lot of naan. I don’t know how I’m gonna live without naan. It’s too good. When we left there, I headed off to help teach an English class to some women in a slum. We’re just teaching em the alphabet now. We also taught em how to count to 10 and they picked up on that very very quickly, which was exciting. Some of the ladies, I can really see are soaking it up. One lady kept writing her name down. She’d write it, look at me, and smile shyly. It was pretty cute. All the ladies are very sweet. After, I went to a coffee shop with the 2 other ladies that teach the class. I really enjoyed just chatting and getting to know them. They’re a lot of fun. One lady is from India and the other has been here for a year. They’re about 10 years older than me, but we have a lot in common. I got to tell em about my family and about my sister’s wedding coming up and had to try to explain American football to the Indian lady. I just tell the Indians it’s rugby. They understand that haha. That night, Jill and I went to eat with 3 ladies from her company. I’d only met one of the ladies before and I was talking to another one and we found out that she had graduated high school with my mom, and her husband had graduated with my uncle. Such a small world!! It was so so good talking to her. She was awesome, so I’m hoping to spend more time with her before I leave.
This morning we went to church then hung out for a little bit, so we could all go to lunch together. One of the guys in the congregation was hosted it at his house. We had to wait around at the church for a while, because they’re hosting a wedding Saturday, so they were working on some preparations. A lot of the people that were at lunch are also a part of the bible study. I really enjoyed spending time with them and building relationships with them. They had plenty of questions about Texas, and I had plenty to say, since Texas is pretty great. After lunch, we went back to the church for praise and prayer. It was neat. We prayed…a lot and sang a little bit. After being out all day, J and I finally got home and got to relax a bit, which is good, because we have another busy week.
I got to skype with my parents tonight. They both start school tomorrow and Dad’s football team plays Lake Travis (they’ve won the state championship the last 5 years), so it’s a pretty big game. They had just gotten back from Houston when I talked to em. They went to visit my uncle. He was in a really bad car wreck a few weeks ago and was expected to be in ICU 4-8 weeks. When he was in the wreck, he was ejected from the car. Luckily, a police officer drove up a minute later. When he got to my uncle, he wasn’t breathing and when he rolled him over to perform CPR, blood was coming from uncle’s mouth. Just as that happened, an ambulance was driving by, so the officer was able to flag them down, so they were able to save my uncle. He’s had several surgeries since then, but he’s doing very well. He was moved out of ICU about a week ago and has started physical therapy, which has been pretty tough, for him, but they’re expecting him to get out of the hospital, possibly Wednesday. It’s definitely a God thing that he was able to survive. Praise God for that one. Please keep him in your prayers!
Thanks for all the support. 143
Half Marathon Training - My version of newbie running tips
It seems a lot of people I know are suddenly getting the running fever. And they are asking for both running and nutrition tips. First, I am not a registered dietician or nutritional consultant. I'm just very educated about nutrition because I read everything I possibly can. I've tried way too many diets and have finally found what works for my body, my lifestyle and my sanity. None of these may work for you but then again, they may. Let's start with running first.
If you are a new runner and you have comited to a half or full marathon, then I highly suggest you google Hal Higdon's running guide. He has a great website complete with running programs for newbie, intermediate and advanced runners. He has plans designed for 5ks, 10Ks, up through Halves and Fulls. They are easy to download and print off. You can just plug in the days to your calendar and your sit to go. He has great advice for injury prevention as well.
We used his running plan for my first 10k, as well as for my half and marathon. After that, I have used his plan for intermediate runner as a guideline - not running it exactly but using it to help me stay on task during training season.
My second tip is to check out Runner's World. I'm old school and prefer the print version (something about holding it in my hands) but I know you can download it as well once you subscribe. You can also access the website which has everything from shoes to nutrition to injury prevention to everything in between. They are my go to source for running.
My third tip, and probably one that I didn't heed as important when it first given to me, is to go to a well known, reputable run store. Buy running specific shoes. You can't just lace up sketchers and hit the road - you'll be looking at injuries, frustration and well, you just can't do that. They will be able to determine whether you pronate, overpronate, neutral, etc and how you strike. Nowadays, running shoes come in all colors and are awesome. I log every mile I put on my running shoes and I now have enough in my arsenal that I can rotate them, which causes a lot less injury or stress on my joints. Again, you should read the shoe guide from Runner's World before going to the shoe store, it'll help you understand what they are talking about when you get there. And buy a good pair of running socks. Trust me on this. Blisters suck.
My fourth tip (and final one for today in regards to running) is to simply get up and go. No one has drowned in their own sweat so have no fear, you won't either. You may think you are going to die from lack of oxygen but most likely you'll stop before that happens. Set a goal. If you've never run before, you'll soon find out it is harder then you thought it was. So walk as well. Be prepared to be unimpressed with yourself the first day or two. But don't get frustrated and don't quit. Runners don't quit. They simply don't know how - they run in heat, rain and through injuries. But definately set a goal - sometimes my clients will run mailbox to mailbox and walk every other one. Then it becomes street corner to street corner, then it becomes every two street corners, until they've progressed to 1 mile without stopping. Set your goal and go. No one will do it for you.
Nutrition advice is varied from person to person. For me, what has improved my strength, my body, my mind, and my running is to adopt clean eating. I eat way more veggies then anything else, I've quit eating glutein (because it made me bloated and irritated my stomach), and I chose clean, lean Proteins (egg whites, chicken breast, fish). I run for Team Beef and realize the importance Beef plays in a nutrition plan so I do eat steak. But not every day. I am probably more vegetarian in my eating style then anything else. If I can chose only egg whites and greek yogurt for my proteins that is what I go with more then anything else. Egg whites are awesome - 16 calories, tons of protein and pretty darn portable if you boil them. Also, those little envelopes of chicken are great as well. Get it packed in water, chicken breast only and get the small envelope (unless your a guy, then you can have a couple of large ones). Pretty darn portable.
I'll plan on a blog post regarding what I eat in a week of hardcore training (when I'm running 50 - 65 miles a week) so you understand what works for my body. I can run on very few calories because I pack such high proteins in with those small calories. I hardly ever cook anything and if I do, I use Pam Spray. I never use butter, not even yogurt butter although I keep yogurt butter on head for the people in my house. I only use mustard - ketchup has sugar and I try to stay as low in sugar as possible. For my fruits, I stick to blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and apples. I'll explain why in another blog. To find out how to eat clean, you can good Clean Eat and there is a magazine available both online and in paper form. Lots of great recipes, but I don't use them. I've modified everything I cooked 5 years ago to be clean and so I just don't need those from the magazine; however, it is a great reference to get you started with lots of helpful hints and explainations on what food does what.
You'll want to experiment with what works pre run and post run. Some people run without fuel and some people (like me) eat before and after. I usually eat a greek yogurt (without the fruit - I add my own - that way it is lower in sugar then the store infused fruitty greek yogurt) prerun and then my latest obsession has been a rice cake with a smidge (about a tsp) of peanut butter on it with a tbsp of dark chocolate shredded on top.
My tip for beginners is to simply clean up their eating habits. They are simple:
- Quit the fast food stops.
- No soda pop - not even diet.
- Yes, you can drink coffee (because that is simply a non-negotiable for me).
- Restrict your sugar as much as possble until the only sugar you intake is the natural kind found in your veggies.
- Put more veggies (not laden in butters, creams or sauces) on your plate then anything else.
- No White Food - switch to whole grains.
- Limit your starch - Not all runners gorge on pasta, we find our carbs in other places like Chicken breasts. In fact, I have no pasta or grains until the night I complete a race. This won't work for everyone.
- Clean protein sources - greek yogurt, eggs, chicken, fish, lean beef
Will it be a struggle for some to do this? Yes. But imagine how awesome it is going to feel when you cross those finish lines?
Okay, that's it for now - many of you have enough homework to keep you busy for a few days. Be aware of what you eat, do the best you can on eating clean and start running!