Americans Watch Baseball

Happy Wednesday everyone! I hope everyone’s week is going well. It’s finally feeling like summer here in Indiana and my runs are suffering thanks to it.

I’m processing a WHOLE lot right now, so instead of drowning you all in thoughts, I’ll leave you with some images of what my life is right now. Side note: we were in Chicago this past weekend and it was wonderful. I do hope I can make it my home some day soon.

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We went up to celebrate this kid’s birthday. Did the same thing two years ago.

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Yep. Not so much has changed…

teamamerica

We’re easily the most American people at the Cubs game.

quote-William-Butler-Yeats-do-not-wait-to-strike-till-the-92620

Strikes make sparks make fire.

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Rainer Maria Rilke

Is “Gluten Withdrawal” Real?

Per my last post (and a week ago tomorrow), I’ve been pretty successfully gluten free, sans a sip of beer I snagged from the boy at the Rathskellar and a bite of the birthday cake I made he and the brother (super indulgent and not my style – but I had to try it!).

So how do I feel? Well, to be honest, pretty awful. My eating schedule is confused and I’m basically surviving on a diet of soaked grains, beans, salad greens and Shakeology. I don’t know what to eat before workouts, I don’t know what to eat after workouts and I don’t know what my body is hungry for. To top it all off: I haven’t had coffee in a week.

Food of the Gods

Why I’m still moving at all.

My energy levels are dumbfounding: one minute I’ll be ready to ride bikes all afternoon, but five minutes later my legs will be too tired to move. I passed out on the couch at Kaleb’s parents’ house on Sunday after lunch (shrimp and salad greens, Kaleb’s mom was sweet enough to make sure there were at least a few things I could eat, but you better believe I wanted a slice of the French bread and a bite or eight of her homemade fettuccine Alfredo. And that chocolate fudge cake? Shoot me.)

And then there’s that marathon thing. I didn’t get a run in today because I was starving when I got home from work. Not hungry at all during the day and excited for the time outside, but the minute I’m home I need to eat and almost nap.

I was really starting to get down on (re: totally cried to Kaleb) until I did some research and realized it’s not uncommon to feel this way for a few days/weeks when gluten is removed from a diet. Remove gluten and coffee (and caffeine and alcohol this week – trying to detox completely and give the body a rest) and I can see how my body is confused.

So the plan this week:

  1. Take it easy. I’ve got weeks before the marathon and it’s more important to stay healthy than it is to get a four mile run in.
  2. Listen to my body. Eat when I’m hungry and THINK about what I want. Do some reading if I’m having unusual cravings.
  3. Eat even cleaner. Some of my friends joke that I don’t eat anything but vegetables, but they don’t know of my sick peanut butter and marshmallow habit. If my body is healing, it needs support.
  4. Meditate/Pray. In short, bring peace to my mind.
  5. Enjoy the down time. I don’t do this often; now’s the time to send those letters I wrote three week ago and return all of those calls.

Sitting on my porch as the sun finally sets and my herbal tea cools, I leave you with Keaton Henson, this week’s new music find. I’ll update later with last week’s find

How to Survive Without Gluten, Corn or Coffee

I know what you’re thinking: “you don’t.” Or, “why would you want to?” “It’s not worth it,” even. All valid and appropriate responses (and all of which I had when I first read the results). Did I mention it said grapes, too? As in wine? Yeah, I nearly cried.

I made this for all of you

I made this for all of you

If you know me at all, you know that recently/over the past few months I’ve been battling “stomach issues,” as I referred to them. “Sorry guys, I can’t eat that, it upsets my stomach” was my response to pretty much everything anyone offered me. What do I mean by upset? It varied, but usually ended up in extremely painful gas and bloating, headaches and fatigue. Oh, and a halt on estrogen production (we’ll get to that at a later time).

When my traditional doctor recommended taking a pill to “see what would happen” when a blood test revealed I wasn’t producing estrogen, I almost lost my mind. “We don’t know why your body isn’t doing what it’s supposed to do – you’re at a healthy weight and activity level [promise you all that's what she said]. Why don’t you take this pill, we know it works. Once you get your period we’ll see what happens.”

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Small Wins are Still Wins

Remember those goals I set yesterday? About creating? Booyah – time found. I made desktop backgrounds for my computer. I was going to try to make purses out of the bottoms of pants I turned into shorts for K-bob (re: I cut them below the knee), but one look at the fabric and the realization that I have thread in blue and black (the pants are brown and again, let’s not talk about supplies) and I decided “well, you want to do more graphic design, baby steps, baby girl, baby steps.”

Lo and behold (it’s a parenthesis kind of day, is ‘lo’ even a proper word?), new desktop backgrounds. Heck, if I had a printer, you better believe I’d have printed these babies out and put them on the fridge fifth grade-style.

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(does the extra space hide how I couldn’t make them the same size on the blog, even though the pixels are the same? Thought so….)

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These images were shamelessly ripped from the Tumblr Oh Pioneer, by the way. That tumblr is the life I wish I led most of the time.

Anyway, accomplishments from last night include: reading, cutting my jog short knowing 12-ish miles await me in the morning, creating these backgrounds and not being a turbo freak on K-bob. Win? You’re always strong on day one. Come find me on day 41…

Up this weekend: volunteering at the Back on My Feet/Planet Adventure (really have no idea who is in control here) trail run Saturday.

To make: we have a TON of peaches. As in K-bob went half-sies with someone for like a million pounds (we have two King Soopers bags full) of peaches. I’mma make me some peach preserves. And eat chicken with peaches and basil. Yes, chicken. Meat. An animal. It happens.

Thankful for: my incredible friends and family (as always). Special love today to Jenny, Thompson, Blanket and Janellelephant. And of course K-bob. Look at that, recognized gratitude.

Your Thoughts Determine Your Destiny

Yesterday was the five-year anniversary of the loss of my best friend and sister. I stayed strong most day (and the night before), thinking about her and what she would think about my life now – what I’ve accomplished, how I’ve changed, the adventures I’ve had that she wanted to have as well. I think she would be proud of me.

I also think she would have hit me in the face quite a few times to keep me in check.

I cried over having to give up a bike that someone loaned to me. I cried about needing to pay for my car. I cried and was unfair with K-bob because I’m insecure and want him to make me secure. Lots of crying. Lots of reality-checking needed.

I’ve come to realize lately that I’m trying too hard to be too much. To be perfect. To be impressive. It’s wearing me out and I’m losing track of who I really am and what I really value. I value my family and friends. I value my health. I value creativity and the pursuit of knowledge. I value not being bat-shiz crazy.

This image/saying really caught me this morning. Your THOUGHTS are what dictate your happiness and your future. I’ve been allowing my thoughts to be absurd and untrue recently. They’ve been hurting me. They’ve changed from thoughts to irrational fears.

gandhi

I need to regain a balance of happy. To do that, I have set a few goals for the coming month/months. And what are goals without accountability? Well, that’s where you all come in. Get on my case if you see me being a slacker.

Goals this month:

Have New Experiences 

Whether it’s trying something new at a restaurant, attending a show I would normally pass on or trying a new activity (hello Stand Up Paddle boarding – you’ve been calling my name for months), I endeavor to try something new each week. Heck, simply checking out new music. That’s one – a new band a week.

Make time for Family

I have a habit of hating the phone. I called my older brother (easily my hero) a grand total of five times last year. We managed to talk twice. Those best-friends-more-like-sisters who live on opposite coasts? Tried to call one yesterday only to realize I lost her number when I got a new phone in April. It’s August. This doesn’t mean dedicating an hour a night to a different person, but maybe it means sending those cards I filled out or dropping a quick text. There is always time for texting.

Listen to my Body

If you know me, you know I tear myself apart. Right now, so is food. As in everything I eat immediately turns to terror in my stomach. And remember that marathon I’m training for? Let’s not talk about over training and fatigue. Running nauseated is going to happen when you’re running long distances in high heat, but it shouldn’t be a constant feeling. I need to listen to my body and give it rest when it needs it. I need to fuel it with things that don’t upset it (re: actually and for real cut out gluten and dairy. I know those are two huge culprits). Practice yoga. Meditate. Shower more regularly…

And finally (most importantly):

Slow Down

I’m too busy. What does busy mean? It means I fill up my day with tasks and leave little time for the things that bring me joy. I want to rediscover (re:find my joy, maybe?) my passion for things I used to find peace in. Be it photography, sewing, cooking, – creating in general – I’m going to make time for me. The better care I take of myself, the better care I can take of the ones who love me.

Any tips from the peanut gallery? What have you found helps you achieve your goals? Books? Meditation? Classes? Movies or music?

Holding On and Moving Forward

Today (well, the past two or seventeen days) has been kind of rough. I’m so happy to have the friends and support I have, though I am missing quite a few people. I’m constantly reminded how blessed I am –  how much I have and how much I can give.

Sometimes things don’t go your way. Sometimes you don’t get what you want. Sometimes it feels like you’re descending down a mountain in a rain storm and your breaks are failing and you’re hoping there isn’t something waiting for you at the bottom.

Before the 3 State 3 Mountain Challenge

Before the 3 State 3 Mountain Challenge

I have been blessed recently to be welcomed into a community of cyclists in Indianapolis/Fishers. I set out to attempt my first century (100 mile) bike ride last weekend, only to come up short thanks to the weather. I’ve learned so much in such a short period of time – how can I sit and wallow in what I don’t have yet when I look back on what I’ve been given?

ladies

Roommates!

What more can I really ask for? I have friends, family, a job, food on the table and, most importantly my health. So here’s to holding on and moving forward.

The Beatles in color: Unseen photos

Courtney:

The BF loves the Beatles. I love photography. Best of both worlds?

Originally posted on CNN Photos:

Henry Grossman spent four years photographing The Beatles as they did everything from  perform in concerts and pose for magazine covers to party late into the night and pour milk with bedhead in the morning.

Grossman recognized their prominence — it was hard to miss when he had to wear earplugs to block out the screaming beneath the stage at concerts – but he said he would have been more in awe if they had been opera stars. He just liked the guys, he said.

“It just shows me my judgment isn’t very good. I didn’t understand rock,” Grossman said about himself in the ’60s. Though now he says he loves it.

Not even The Beatles realized they would still be defining pop culture a half century after their American Invasion. Grossman recalls a long conversation with George Harrison about their fame in 1967 in which Harrison told him, “Who knows…

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