Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Balancing Life

 I have been thinking a lot about health lately.  Derek and I both receieved Bachelors degrees in Exercise Physiology, and we have studied the physiology our bodies undergo while performing physical activity.  We have learned about the cardiovascular system, metabolism, hormones, how our bodies move, and how our brain functions.  The body is truly facinating, and it wasn't designed to sit around all day.  Recently, someone approached Derek and I with some questions about their health.  Our answer..... eat healthy, exercise, drink plenty of water, get 6-9 hours of sleep each night, stay close to the Lord, and continually strive to do what Heavenly Father wants you to do.  This person's response, "I hate you guys!"
Why is it that we ALL know the answers to our problems, but yet we struggle to live by them.  I have noticed that so many individuals WANT the attention of having a syndrome or diagnosis.  When someone comes to me about questions with their health, I often find that they want to find something wrong with them.  They don't want to hear my answer that they need to exercise and move their body.  They don't want to hear my answer that due to the heart disease running in their family, they need to lower their LDL's, take in less sodium, avoid trans fats, etc.

 So what about mental disorders?  They are real of course, but I promise you, if you exercise, get enough sleep, drink enough water, stay close to the Lord, and eat healthy, your mental capacity to deal with things will change drastically.  Have I ever dealth with depression, no, do I understand entirely what people go through with depression no, but I have studied the human body.  I have learned about the effects of exercise, and folks, it's a POWERFUL thing!  So many people want to jump right into taking medicine to fix their problems..... but a lot of the time medicine has side effects.  Of course, in some situations, medication should be used, but before thinking there is no other way, take care of yourself first!  Love yourself, and do the basics that you know your body needs!
So why is it soooo hard for us to abide by these basic principles?  Why is it that we all know we should exercise and eat healthy, but yet we struggle doing it each day?  Some of my excuses have been, "Levi is still asleep, I should just sleep in until he wakes up rather than wake up to exercise."  "I don't want to go to sleep, I need time to just relax and play candy crush."  Or my personal favorite, "Vegetables don't taste like donuts!"  It's incredibly easy for me to come up with an excuse, but for some reason it's so difficult to live this balanced lifestyle sometimes.  Believe me, I am the first person to admit I am not the best at exemplifying this balanced life style.  I will go through phases where I do really well, and then I will falter.  Or I can usually do well in certain areas in my life, but then really struggle in other areas.  In the scriptures, we read about the importance of diet, sleep, and staying close to our Heavenly Father.  I hope that we can each practice these healthy living styles.  Try to tell those lame excuses to get out of your head, and take care of your body.  Our bodies are beautiful blessings, and it is our responsibility to take care of them.  Something that I know helps motivate me is how much better I feel after.  I have so much more energy, and I can deal with my stresses in life.  Here are some tips that help me:  find a type of exercise that you enjoy.  Certain types of exercises are a drag for me. But I LOVE exercise when it's fun.  I love to dance, do abs or any type of core work, inner thigh work, Zumba, Pilates, hiking, biking, kickboxing, or playing any type of sport.  It really doesn't matter what you do, but it's so important to get up and move!  When I have healthy foods in my house, I snack on healthy food throughout the day.  I try not to wait until I'm desperate and overly hungry.  This helps with my munchies.  Set time aside each day for scripture time and quiet time.  I like to write in my journal and get my thoughts clear.  It helps me to handle my stresses and then I can get back to being a wife and mom.  If I wait to read scripture when I'm overly tired at night, I don't get much out of it, but if I set time aside to read during the day, I get a lot more out of it.  Scriptures are so uplifting, and I notice a distinct difference in my day.  If you have kids, it really makes exercise more difficult sometimes, but if you involve them, it makes it fun!  Stay active with your kids, they'll keep ya young!  Something that helps me immensely is thinking of my family first!  I want my family to be healthy, so I need to set an example to them.  What I make for dinner goes in their bellies, so it's important for me to eat healthy.  I hope that I can do better, and I hope that someday I can teach exercise and help educate others on taking care of their bodies and staying healthy.  I thank my Heavenly Father each day for my healthy body!  It is a beautiful gift!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Saying what I never thought I'd be saying

  Do you ever look back and read your journal/blog about when you were going through a difficult time?  Does it ever make you laugh?  Here I was just looking back reading through some of my past stresses I was going through, and I seriously started laughing.  Those stresses seem so childish now.  It's crazy when you're in the middle of going through a trial it feels like the world is going to end, and you can't see the end result.  It's funny when you're praying for an answer, and the answer you get isn't what you prayed for, but in the end it's EXACTLY what you needed.
    I NEVER thought I would say this, and I always hated the people who said this, but I really am thankful for the trials I've gone through.  Why do you ask?  Because going through those experiences has made me a stronger person.  I can handle stress/anxiety/challenges with a better mind set than I could in the past.  My testimony has grown leaps and bounds because of the small trials I've gone through.  Going through those past trials, I have learned that my Heavenly Father loves me, and that he is capable of lifting my burdens from me.  I've learned to humble myself, and I've learned that's it's possible to change.  Just because I have anxiety about things, doesn't mean I can throw in the towel and say I can't do it.  Although we are given weaknesses, we can fix them, and we can grow.  I've learned to pray over my flaws and that each day I can become a better person than I was the day before.  Something else that I am grateful for is the fact that I'm way more prepared to face my trials and challenges now than if I wouldn't have endured my previous trials.  As most of you are aware, the older we get, the more responsibilities we take on.  With responsibility comes a lot more challenges and stresses than before.  I have had one heck of a year.  There has been a great deal of change, and a great deal of stress.  I am currently enduring a trial that I never in a million years thought I would be going through.  I wish I could share it with you, and I probably can in a few months, but it is just too personal right now and effects more than just me.  Right now I am grateful for my previous struggles I've gone through then ever before.  I never thought I would be thanking my Heavenly Father for allowing me to go through those challenges in my life in order to get me through my challenges now.
    I know that when we are going through hard times in our lives it's so hard to see blessings coming from them.  It's hard to understand why we are going through them, and it's hard to see the outcome, but when we endure our trials and turn to our Heavenly Father we can grow immensely.  It is only through God that we become strong, and that our burdens can be lifted.  I am so grateful for the growth, development, knowledge, faith, testimony, and strength that I have gained through experiencing the difficult times in my life.  I hope that if any of you are struggling at this time that you can remember to give your burden up to Heavenly Father, and know that he has a plan for you and loves you.  I also hope that you all know you can come to me and I will be there with a plate of cookies and a warm hug to help you through any challenges you are facing.  I love you all and hope you are doing well!