He Who Listens: Five Minute Friday

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I recently explained to my daughter the difference between hearing and listening. She kept getting angry at her brother for saying things she didn’t want to hear and used it as an excuse to fight with him. I kept telling her.

You don’t have to listen. 

But I can’t stop my ears, even if I cover them, she said.

I told her that listening isn’t just hearing, it’s acknowledging and responding to what is being said. It requires some kind of action on our part. I didn’t explain to her that most of the time I can’t help hearing my children, but often I’m not listening. Because the noise is constant and sometimes unnecessary. (Strike that, mostly unnecessary).

When our third child was born and we found out he was going to be a boy, I wanted his name to mean somethings special. I starting looking up names based on meaning. We often joke that we should name our kids for the good qualities we hope to see. Since our second born really doesn’t listen very well, I started looking up names that meant hearing, listening, obeying, etc. That is how I found Simon. He who hears or he who listens. I felt immediately like it was the name for him. It felt like a blessing I was praying over him. Since we chose his name, months before he was born, I have prayed that he would have a unique capacity to hear the voice of God.(Of course it also wouldn’t hurt if he listened to his parents as well).

That little boy is now a year old, as of yesterday. He has a lot to say, though little of it involves words. I marvel at his easy smile and laugh. He is my easiest child, by far. As the days slip by, I find myself grieving of the loss of the babyhood. The brief window of that magic first year has drawn to a close and I wonder if I am the one who has failed to listen. This is my last chance to mother a baby, a baby boy. What does God have to say to me during this time?

Am I able to hear him? Am I even listening?

 

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Fit2B Quick: Week 4

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I lost some time last week, between travel and extreme exhaustion I didn’t exercise for almost a whole week, at least with Fit2B.  But when we were visiting friends I took a hike and a very long walk. Don’t let your exercise schedule keep you from living your life.

 

Kelly’s Core Cardio

It has been a while since I’ve done this. I like the hooping motion because it uses a slightly different set of muscles than other typical cardio. It was a little more challenging to maintain my core engagement but I was still able to do it.
Bag A Better back

My first time ever doing this workout. Ironically all I could find to put in my grocery bags was my 3 lb hand weights, but I could totally see myself filling these bags with random kids toys or the shoes that seem to be constantly blocking my front door. This was a surprisingly challenging upper body workout. One of the best parts about it is how easy it is to make the workout harder when you are ready. Just add more stuff to your bags. Like so many of Beth’s workouts, this works well in real life. Grab a few bags, whatever you have to add weights and go.
Body Sculpting II

This is technically labeled a challenging workout. But Beth provides multiple suggestions for modifications and I made sure to use them. Though this is called body sculpting, I think it actually makes a good short cardio routine. (Which is great because I’ve been running out of short cardio).
Bag a Better Booty

This was a really interesting workout. The bags I used had handles that were a little too long, so it was hard for me to get the full workout within my current range of motion, with good alignment. As often happens, my supporting leg got an even stronger workout than the leg that was in motion. Trying to avoid sinking into my supporting hip while still lifting weight with my free leg was definitely challenging. I can see how this workout may help me learn to use good alignment while dancing.
Hipster Chair Moves

This is only the second time I have done this workout. It’s a fun little workout. Not too long. Definitely does some great work on the legs, hips and glutes. (In retrospect perhaps not the best choice the day after Bag A Better Booty, but I did OK).
Mula Bandha

My favorite part of this, even after so many years of doing it, is the tree pose. It really changes the focus a bit and helps me make sure I’m not compensating with other muscles. If it’s been a while since you’ve tried this, it’s worth a revisit.
Restorative Poses

This is so relaxing, especially if there aren’t any kids around. This workout can really be as long as you like, just pause after each stretch and rest in each stretch for a while longer.

I am back to really struggling with getting up early in the morning, which means that I have a hard time getting my workouts in. I wish I was already as strong as I want to be, running miles again and doing yoga and lifting weights in between. But I’m not there yet. So I have to accept it and do the best I can for now.

 

You can use the coupon code laundryblog to save 30% off a Fit2B Studio annual membership.

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If you need a little more help; rehab rather than just fitness, check out The Tummy Team.

 

 

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We May Be Shaken, But He Holds Fast

 

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We were singing a worship song a few Sunday’s ago with a line that says, “We will not be shaken, God of our salvation. You are, you are the rock we stand on.” I love that line, but yet something about it felt off. Because the truth is, I am often shaken. It has been a difficult summer at our house, for many different reasons. It has taken a toll on me as a parent, as a wife and as a person.

Then I realized those aren’t the words. The line properly reads

“He will not be shaken, God of our salvation.”

It’s easy for me to forget that disequilibrium is part of life. Things will rarely go according to plan. The nature of this broken world is that things will always move towards disorder and dysfunction. So yes, I will be shaken, but that doesn’t mean all hope is lost.

As we sang that song I remembered the scripture we picked out for our wedding. I should preface this story by saying that we were very intentional about this. We prayed and read the Bible a lot, looking for the right verse. For some reason, all the scriptures typically used at weddings, just didn’t feel like a good fit for us.

Then we came across Isaiah 54:10

Though the mountains be shaken
and the hills be removed,
yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
nor my covenant of peace be removed,”
says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

This felt like the right verse, because yes it was God’s promise to Israel, but it was also the promise we were making to each other. Yes, we have failed at this. There have certainly been times in our thirteen years that our love for each other has been shaken. But it is the unshakable love of God, that has held us fast.
If you look at the full Chapter 54 of Isaiah, it’s a tough chapter. Israel is suffering the consequences of disobedience. Yet God’s love for them endures and he continues to offer them mercy. In the middle of their difficulty is this wonderful promise of his unshakable love and compassion. There are other wonderful promises to cling to in this chapter and I’m going to try to read the full chapter more often to remind myself of them.
Because we will be shaken. Life will throw things at us that we can’t possibly anticipate. We can’t truly know how we will reaction until we face the times of suffering. We may stand strong or we may crumble. (I usually do a bit of both). But His love doesn’t change, is not moved and will not be shaken. He is the rock we stand on, steady against the storm.

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Finding Our Way Home: Five Minute Friday

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Photo Credit: Eva the Weaver via Compfight cc

We think it’s time to move on. Except all the numbers don’t line up. The news isn’t what we wanted to hear. Yet, we feel strongly that it is time to go. We were start looking at alternative options. We keep search for a house that can become a home. A place where our little children have room to stretch their legs and grow, with space for their big personalities and dreams.

My husband, even the introvert, seeks someplace quiet. After years of living in the city he’s looking for respite, for peace. After years of making this place my own, the idea of starting over again is daunting. And yet, I feel ready for a new adventure.  I’m not sure where it will be, or how it will look, but I know how I want it to feel.

Like so many other things in life, we must strive forward through the fog; taking baby steps, scooting, sliding and edging towards what we think and hope is there. Searching for a place to belong, to be home again.

 

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Fit2B Quick Week 3

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This was my first week trying to fit in workouts while also adding back in my Tummy Team exercises and attempting to get up early to do it. It was a mixed success. I did manage to workouts almost daily, but I didn’t always manage to get up early. A teething baby resulted in a few fussy nights. But I’m trying to stay on track.

Walking Workouts

This is a fun workout. Simple, easy and best of all, short. I totally forgot she suggests doing this was weights. I’ll have to try that again some time. You don’t have to be very coordinated to this workout, since it’s mostly marching and walking in place.

Balanced

I forgot how full body this workout is. But I like that it incorporates weights and the balance portion is a great test to my core as I’m regaining strength. I look forward to coming back to this one when I’m a bit stronger and upping the weight.
21 Tone Up

This is only the second time I’ve done this workout. Definitely full body, a nice cardio challenge. If you are still repairing your abdominal separation like I am, make sure you really focus on core engagement with this workout.
Pilates in Pajamas II

It’s been a while since I’ve done this workout, but I really enjoyed it. I liked the slight element of adding weight to it. But over all it is not a super high intensity workout. Plus, it’s Pilates which I enjoy but don’t do much anymore.
Pilates in Pajamas

This workout was harder than I remembered. I’ve done it many times, in various levels of fitness, including while pregnant. But this time I tried to really concentrate and focus on engaging my core, and modifying movements as needed. I was surprised by how hard the side leg series was. I stopped and took breaks if I needed to, but I kept going. Many years ago, before Fit2B, Pilates was my primary form of exercise. I was pretty fit back then, hopefully I will be again.

Bonus:

Yoga for Runners

It’s been a while since I’ve done this workout, but there is a lot to like here. I decided not to do downward dog, since I still have a decent size diastasis. This would definitely be a good cool down after a walk or run.

Totally Transverse II

It may seem silly to keep going over these simple core workouts, but I think it’s actually incredibly useful. Because it can be difficult to remember to engage the core once we start harder workouts. Routines like this help me to preserve my core awareness.
After being so bummed out last week when I discovered that my DR was still so large and deep, despite so much of my hard work for the last few months, I decided to do something about it. At first I felt paralyzed, like I couldn’t do anything. Then I decided to take action. I am not limiting myself to the Foundation Five. That is definitely an OK step, but not where I wanted to do right now. Instead I started setting alarms on my phone to remind me to do the exercises and stretches I had learned from The Tummy Team. I tried to do Core Wake Up (the shortest core routine on Fit2B) almost everyday. I still did the workouts I had planned, but I was very intentional. I focused on making sure I was really engaging my core and modified when necessary.

Don’t let a set back keep you from exercise. Find a way to make it work while still taking care of your body. Part of me wanted to just give up and eat cookies. (not that there is anything wrong with eating cookies sometimes). But I knew that I needed to keep moving. I’m hoping that by adding back in the exercises from The Tummy Team, I’ll be able to improve my core engagement and awareness, hopefully healing my core in the process.

You can use the coupon code laundryblog to save 30% off a Fit2B Studio annual membership.

Join Fit2b.us

If you need a little more help; rehab rather than just fitness, check out The Tummy Team.

 

Categories: Fit2B Studio | 1 Comment

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