Monday, August 26, 2013

Wheat free for 2 weeks!

Last week my hubby came home from school and dropped a bombshell:

"I think we should try eating a wheat-free diet for two weeks."

Say, what!? After further conversation and investigation, I found that his nutrition teacher at school shared some interesting information about wheat and gluten in general. She commented that when people came to her with problems and issues, one of the first things she would do was recommend was a wheat-free diet for two weeks. Typically, if the people followed the diet, they saw a weight loss of around 15 pounds and came back happier, healthier, and with more energy. Not too mention every person said how great they felt.

Both Scott and I agreed those perks sounded pretty good and that two weeks really isn't very long, so we should try it. What do we have to lose?

I knew that in order for this to be successful, I would have to make a meal plan far in advance that included breakfasts, lunches, and snacks, in addition to the normal dinner meal plan I usually make.

Today, August 26, is day 1 of two weeks. I'm hoping everything goes successfully and that we are able to really stick to this! Once I started thinking and meal planning, I realized there are tons of things I can make that are not weird, foreign, or difficult, but are wheat-free. If I focus on the things I CAN have, versus what I cannot, I'll be much better off.

One of the hardest things will be to include Blake on this. It's so easy for me to give him a piece of toast or cook a tortilla if he isn't happy with what we're eating. But, he can benefit just as much as us, and it will be good for him to have to try new things. He does love nuts, dried fruit, fresh fruit, and several veggies, so I'm hoping he won't be too difficult!

To really illustrate the way we plan to eat, here is a lovely shot of my meal plan for this week!

Next week I'm going to try making zucchini lasagna and I'm including some brown rice spaghetti as well. Ever had those noodles from Trader Joe's? So good!

I also want to decrease my sugar and chocolate intake as much as possible, so I'm trying to do that as well. However, we are definitely not to the point of eliminating cheese, dairy, grains, etc etc and going all out Paleo. We like to keep it simple here and try one thing at a time. 

If you have a favorite wheat/gluten-free recipe you love, feel free to share!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Dog Attack and Sideways Blessings

First of all, I cannot get over this weather we are having. In AUGUST! I have lived in the Midwest most of my life and I don't ever, ever, ever, remember a summer that was too COLD to go swimming, in the middle of August. Not too mention sleeping with windows open? It is truly bizarre to me. But nevertheless, I am loving it!!!

So recently, our sweet little shihapoo dog, Kaiya, was attacked at a school playground. Fortunately, no kids were involved. Unfortunately she sustained at least three wounds. Basically it went down like this:

Van pulls up. Lady and four huge dogs get out. I ask my friend "will your son be able to hold Kaiya back from trying to bolt for the dogs?" we agreed that he could. We shouldn't have worried about that scenario. As soon as the big dogs heard and saw my little one, they bolted across the parking lot and attacked her. Biting, tackling, claws, etc. There was lots of yipping, screeching, barking, and growling.

Luckily, my friend and I were not too far away. We bolted over to the dogs as fast as possible. However, I felt very much in slow motion despite the fact I was running full speed. We were able to pull the dogs apart very quickly and I held them back until their owner made it over to us.

In that moment, all I could think about was "get my dog off the ground and to safety!" I didn't even think about the possibility of myself or my friend getting bit. When it was over, the owner asked if Kaiya was alright. Of course I had absolutely no idea, so I sort of nodded and said I thought so. She said her leash had broken and she was sorry. Then she left and we left.

My poor dog did not want to walk so I set her in the stroller. It took awhile for both my friend and I to stop shaking and calm down. We replayed the experience over several times as we walked around the track. Then we watched as the van left. Shortly later we realized we had not bothered to ask her name, phone number, license plate or anything. Dumb.

When I got home, I bathed my dog and checked her over the best I could. I found a small puncture wound on her chest and thought that was it. The rest of the day she barely moved and acted completely scared of everything. I kept thinking there was something else wrong, but we couldn't see anything. After our date that night, we found a small matted bit of hair on her back. When we cut it off and brushed through it, we realized there was a sizable gash wound that looked pretty yucky. I called the vet at 10:30 pm and was able to get a 6 am appointment the next morning. Luckily they just washed the wounds, gave her a shot for pain, and prescribed some medicine. Unluckily it cost over $100.

Then a small miracle occurred.

On Monday morning, my friend and I went back to the location to walk again. Despite my anger, frustration, and annoyance, I had decided to let the incident go and come to terms with the fact that we had to shell out some cash to help our pup. Just as we finished our walk, the van drove up. I was shocked. I knew I needed to talk to the lady, but I wasn't sure what to say. I ran up and mumble jumbled for a minute before I asked the backgrounds of her dogs and if they'd been vaccinated. She then asked how my dog was and I told her the injuries sustained and the trip to the vet. She asked how much it cost and then immediately offered to pay the bill. In fact, she was very direct in saying "here is my address, mail me the bill and I'll mail you a check." 

In our conversation she expressed her gratitude that my friend and I were able to pull the dogs apart so quickly. She had a knee replacement and was unable to run, much less walk quickly. She couldn't believe her dog had attacked as she had never shown that aggression before. She told me some more information about her dog and expressed her sadness that nobody would ever adopt her because she was difficult and had too much energy. She was very kind and very apologetic. Completely different than the person I had created in my mind for her to be.

As I drove home I became completely absorbed in the lessons I had just learned:

-I had harshly judged this lady for doing "nothing" when I had no idea she couldn't move because of her knee. Boy, was I humbled.
-There is a God watching over us who is very keenly aware of our needs.
-When approaching a confrontation calmly and without hostility, good things typically happen
-Sometimes God gives us what my mom calls "sideways blessings", or events that transpire to teach important lessons and lead to decisions that need to be adapted.

We had already decided to give up our dog so we could move, but I never felt settled about it. The Sunday before this event happened, a family met her and offered to adopt her. I asked some tough questions to be sure they were the right fit. That Friday the attack happened. Both my husband and I agreed that she was part of our family and that despite how necessary it looks on paper for her to leave, we would do everything in our power to keep her.

I believe that oftentimes God wants us to make decisions and move forward with those decisions before He decides to intervene if what we've decided is incorrect. I believe everything happens for a reason and that nothing is coincidental. I have certainly seen a great presence of God's hand in our lives these past few weeks. We are in the middle of making life changing decisions and I know, without a doubt, that He is helping us along, even if we might not notice until we look back in hindsight.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

5 years ago...

5 years.

-Two bachelor degrees from BYU
-One bachelors from Logan Chiropratic
-One almost Doctorate from Logan Chiropratic
-Two states
-Two baby boys
-One crazy dog
-4 cars
-4 apartments
-2 states
-A roller coaster of trials and tribulations
-An abundance of the most incredible blessings we could ever have imagined
-A few arguments and a whole lot of LOVE

I can't believe we've been married for 5 years! It seems like just yesterday that we had our first kiss and were engaged a few months later. It has been the most incredible, beautiful, at times difficult, but most rewarding 5 years I've ever experienced. I love him more today than ever before. He is my best friend. My soul mate. My eternal companion. I couldn't be happier!!!

Happy Anniversary Babe!

Monday, August 5, 2013

My Running Quirks

I went on my first real run post-baby two days ago.
Despite being on a treadmill, it was glorious.
The day before that, I ran a 1/4 mile lap on a track outside. It restored my confidence in being able to run again.
When I stepped on the treadmill and punched the button up to 5.0 mph, a surge of joy bolted through my body. "Back in the saddle. Just like riding a bike." I thought. I was able to keep that pace for 5 straight minutes before taking a walking break. Then I ran again. Then walked. For 30 minutes. I loved every last second.

One reason I was on a treadmill was to test out my new kicks.
My current shoes are well broken in and very beloved, so it was a tough comparison to run with something foreign. I was very aware and cognizant of the 8 oz. of rubber and fabric attached to my feet while trying to maintain a 6.0 mph pace for 60 seconds. Not easy. I'll get there.

The second reason I was on a treadmill was the heat and humidity at 2 pm. I'm definitely a 70 degrees and below runner. 85, humid, and sunny is just not a good combination for me.

In celebration of completing my first official run, and after reading a fun article in Runner's World, I thought I'd share some of my personal running quirks. These stem from my training last summer for my first half marathon.

Before every run longer than 5 miles:
-Eat a piece of whole wheat toast covered in peanut butter, and a banana.
-Do 50 jumping jacks, 50 crunches, 10 push ups.
-Lightly stretch my hammies, quads, calfs
-Leg swings front and back, side to side
-Stash my key in my shorts pocket. Double check for key. Check again before running. Check again during workout. Check again during water break. (Can you tell I lost a key once on a run in very large city park?)

During the run:
-I always wear my hair in a pony tail with a rubber headband. If it's below 55 degrees, I cover my ears with a cotton headband.
-Wave, nod, smile or "good morning" when passing other runners
-Motivate myself by obsessively thinking about what I'm going to eat when I get home (waffles, pancakes, eggs, pizza, chocolate milk)
-When I'm tired I set goals to reach: "make it to that tree. Make it to that bench. Make it to that house. Make it to the stop light." After every landmark I reach, I make a new one.
-Uphills I run 100% on my toes. Downhill I try to just lightly hit my heels.

Post run:
-Gatorade if it's longer than 8 miles
-Lots and lots and lots of water.
-Stretch and roll my IT bands
-Eat. And eat. And eat some more (after long runs).
-Obsess over my lap times, overall time, average speed, and fastest mile on MapMyRun

I know I'm just a beginner runner. I still have yet to experience many of the real highs and lows of running. But I know I love it. It hurts so good and makes me feel like I accomplished something. I'm thrilled to start running consistently in the mornings and get into the nitty gritty of race training again!!

The best part? After 11 weeks post baby, I finally feel like myself again. Thank goodness!