Some Cheap (or Free) Intermittent Fasting Resources for Women

intermittent fasting women

Intermittent Fasting helped me to lose weight postpartum- TWICE!

Free & Cheap Resources on Intermittent Fasting for Women

 

It’s crazy how much more material has been written on intermittent fasting for women just in the past few years!  I guess more and more women are seeing how well it works for health and weight loss.  Here is a list of either free of cheap (under 5 or 10 bucks) resources specifically for women:

  1. Article on Intermittent Fasting and women from Women’s Health
  2. Intermittent Fasting for Women: The Ultimat… by Megan Lacey
  3.  Free book on Amazon on 5:2 and Intermittent Fasting women
  4.  Dr. Sara Solomon, a woman who has been doing IF successfully (I am not a supporter of IIFYM and believe micronutrients are VERY important.
  5.  Intermittent Fasting book written by a woman that includes the benefit that a lot of women care about- anti-aging.
  6.  Another free book on Intermittent Fasting for Women
  7.  Intermittent Fasting for Beginners by Karen Green
  8. Fast Diet Magic Book by Caitlin Collins
  9. FastExercise (co-authored by woman) book on combining HIIT with IF–which I definitely believe in.  Changes my body fast and dramatically.
  10.  Intermittent Fasting for Women by Melissa Small
  11.  Intermittent Fasting for Women by Juliete Dryson
  12.  Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss by Ann Ryan
  13.  Easy Alternate Day Fasting by Beth Christian
  14.  What When Wine Diet by Melanie Avalon (Paleo and Intermittent Fasting book)
  15.  Intermittent Fasting: Lose Weight, Get Fit by Sara Elliot Price
  16. 5:2 Diet for Beginners: A Quick Start Guide by Gina Crawford
  17.  The Every-Other-Day Diet: The Diet That Lets … by Krista Varady
  18.   Intermittent Fasting! How I Lost 80 In 4 Mo… by Missy Patterson
  19.  Intermittent Fasting: HOW TO USE INTERMITTE… by Lena Spencer
  20.  Intermittent Fasting for Healthy Weight Loss by Kitty Browne

That’s it.  If you have more links and resources that have helped you, please leave it in the comments, and I can make a new list with those.

Other Intermittent Fasting for Women posts on RunHoly:
intermittent fasting while breastfeeding

Intermittent Fasting while Breastfeeding part 2

Intermittent Fasting for Women Results

Scientific study on Intermittent Fasting for weight loss

Intermittent Fasting and Breastfeeding

 

My Favorite Sermons

 

Top 10 Sermons: A Favorite Sermons List

I enjoy listening to sermons. Don’t you?  It’s like a shortcut to Revelation. I feel like I’m sometimes cheating.  Although I usually can get more revelation from meditating on a couple of verses then I can from two hours of sermons it still causes me a lot of growth. So, here is what I’ve been enjoying lately:

  1. Graham Cooke, as of right now I am listening to his Faith Series. There is a lot of his stuff available on Amazon (and many offered for free through Prime music). The amount of freedom that I feel after listening to Cooke is unlike any other pastor I listen to.
  2. Mike O’Connell series on Power of Words. This man is an undiscovered wealth of wisdom & revelation. The accent helps, but seriously he has a teaching anointing. You not only receive revelation, but also a strong handle on how to walk it out.
  3. Art Katz – An Israelite in Whom There is No Guile. Love this Jewish man. This message in particular is so relevant to our generation as social media is all about “guile”.
  4. Shane Willard-Life, Light, & Increase. This pastor studied under a messianic Jewish rabbi. His revelation because of this is like nothing you’ve ever heard. Amazing insights that are thrilling to the soul.
  5.  John Maxwell- Failing Forward Not exactly a sermon, but this teaching took my breath away. I wish I had heard this a long time ago. Maxwell is a pastor that has resonated in the business world. All of his material is biblically-based and drawn, but it doesn’t sound like your usual Sunday morning. If you are more into reading than listening, you can buy a copy of Failing Forward cheap on Amazon. 
  6. A Defense of Imprecatory Prayers – Robert Gonzales. Due to some pervading issues that I have with wounded evil family attacking me, I have begun to research praying these strange prayers of David where He asks God to do things like break his enemies teeth. This was a great explanation.
  7. John Maxwell – How to Connect With People. Practical evangelism. Awesome 30 minute sermon on something we suck at. Seeing, and connecting with others. This book on this topic looks great.
  8. Katie Souza – Banking on the Glory Lady with a serious testimony and serious anointing. This series on finances is the best thing I’ve heard by her so far. She has a lot more material here and on YouTube. Her teaching on healing the soul is fresh.
  9. Mike Bickle – Deep Unto Deep . Old series, but so good.
  10. The Narcissist. A more specific issue, but this sermon speaks into the issue of narcissism, especially if you’ve suffered through the issue of a family member who is a narcissist.

 

 

 

IHOP-KC: love Covers & lens changes

IHOP-KC, Lens Changes, & Love Covers

Lens Changes

I don’t know if you’ve ever had an eye exam or are familiar with the process. But the last part that gets you to clear vision involves you staring at a chart some distance away while the optometrist flips different lenses over your eyes one at a time.

“Clearer now….or now? Okay now this one…or that one?”

The chart remains unchanged and slowly lens change after lens change you come to your right prescription to have perfect vision.

Graham Cooke was who made me think of this. He has a series called: Mind of a Saint. In this series, he says that we go through many “lens changes” throughout our walk with Christ and that this is how we go from glory to glory.

I thought about the physical process of lens changes and it made some sense analogically to me. You see, I have gone through lens changes in my journey already any times. Different teachers, ministries, biblical focuses & interpretations have all been flipped down over my perception of the unchanged truth in my vision.

To some these lenses would not seem right. If my husband put on my glasses, they would hinder his vision and would probably give him a headache. If I wore the glasses I wore 5 years ago, my vision would not be as clear as it should.

IHOP-KC was a lens for me that allowed me to see the unchanging truth in a beautiful light. This lens highlighted contemplation, worship, and the romance of God. Many years later, this lens is not what it was to me, but I regret in my ignorance being critical of this beautiful lens that escorted me to another level of glory & that highlighted some beautiful facets of my Triune God.

IHOP-kc’s focus and ministry may not be the lens that some need right now (or ever), but that’s not to say that it should be dismissed or called heretical because it is not the lens appropriated for some.

Love Covers

In my Facebook feed, I saw a fellow sister in Christ being critical of a high level pastor. This pastor has been a lens that God has used greatly as a lens change when it comes to the truth of grace.

I walked away from IHOP-KC with blurred vision on the issue of grace The lens that they gave me was not correctly suited to my particular weakness of sight when it comes to grace. My poor sight of this very important issue was giving me great spiritual “headaches”. And so my heavenly optometrist of the eyes of my understanding flipped a lens gently over my eyes so that I could see clearly the beauty and acceptance of His merciful grace. This lens change cleared from my vision the blur of works and condemnation that unfortunately were remnants of my previous set of lenses.

So when I saw this teacher that God had used being criticized and really dogged in the comments (by what seemed like Christians), it made me think about how I had not been merciful to IHOP.

God is gentle in His leadership. When I hear His voice, I am amazed at the rose-colored glasses He wears when He looks at me. He edifies me and tells me the good that He sees in me RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF TERRIBLE SIN & FAILURE. His love breaks my heart. But He sees me “IN CHRIST” where He put me. He sees who I will be not who I am in all my weakness & failure.

And this is where He has put all of His church. We need His eyes. & His heart when we talk about pastors & ministries. His love covers. It’s like he has this automatic Gaussian blur filter better than any magazine cover shot that removes all the flaws and inconsistencies from His view. In His sight we are perfect and he speaks lovingly to us AND ABOUT US.

He is talking about you within the trinity …to others like your loved ones or that person you just had a falling out with. He’s talking about you with kindness and love. He’s reminding them of your good qualities and the things that make you uniquely beautiful.

Why can’t we do this for each other within the body? Maybe we don’t know that this is the way God looks at us, speaks to us, thinks of us…relates to us. If we understood that this was the way He relates to us, maybe we would relate to others within the body this way.

I don’t think we should hide abuse. We should address hurt in a biblical way. But I know that I have smeared big church pastors because I didn’t completely agree with their methods, interpretation, or presentation probably in the name of “speaking truth in love”. But the truth about us is God’s view that sees our potential and sees us through the veil of the perfection of Christ.

I repent for speaking criticisms into my social network & sphere for the purpose of cutting down and highlighting weaknesses & immaturity. For someone, that ministry is the lens that he or she need. I pray that we will all be able to not just speak about our brothers & sisters (individually & corporately) in a loving, generous, and merciful way but to think about them this way in our hearts. I pray that we would grow to understand they way that God extends mercy to us & extend this same mercy to others.

Intermittent Fasting For Women – results & tips

image
Intermittent Fasting For Women (while Breastfeeding) – results & tips

 

Well I thought I would give an update. It’s been about three weeks since I began intermittent fasting. So far I’ve lost about eight or 9 pounds. The weight-loss has been rather effortless.

I’ve begun jogging in the evenings. But only about two or 3 miles. Sometimes I run hills/intervals & sometimes I just barely jog. (Some nights I only feel like walking and do that.) I do this after I’ve eaten (after my eating window has closed). I do this for two reasons:

1. To supress my appetite in the evenings when I’m more likely to snack (outside of my eating window)

2. To burn through my glycogen stores so that I will be burning fat sooner/longer.

 

Wanna read my other posts on intermittent fasting for women/while breastfeeding?

http://runholy.com/intermittent-fasting-breastfeeding-round-2/

http://runholy.com/intermittent-fasting-while-breastfeeding/

http://runholy.com/intermittent-fasting-while-breastfeeding-2/

A Typical Day Fasting as a Breastfeeding Mom

9 AM wake up & nurse Kate

9:10 AM change Sofia and begin making her breakfast

9:20 AM make my coffee (Americano with 1/2 tbs coconut oil)

have “breakfast” with Sofia

do activities with girls, clean house, read

11AM nap time for girls

stay busy while they nap usually reading, listening to teaching, or cleaning, journaling

12:30 nurse Kate

wake up sofia

make lunch for sofia

make lunch for me

1PM EEEEEEEAAT

activities with Girls: long stroller walk, play outside, run errands, playground, etc

*dessert chai tea break

4PM nurse Kate & Sofia quiet time

make dinner

7PM eat dinner

bathtime & put girls to bed

8PM have a dessert or candy

nurse Kate

9PM jog/run/walk

shower, relax

11PM bed

 

10 Tips for Intermittent Fasting for Women

I’ve had the most success with the following tips & strategies:

1.  Try not to eat a ton after lunch. 2. Eat a nice sized, high protein lunch

3. When it’s time to not eat whether you are trying to not overeat during eating window or during fasting, have lots of different gums. (I’ve found wrigleys winterfresh to be the best at suppressing cravings.)

4. Get a fun cup with a straw & drink ice cold water all the time and especially when you are feeling hungry.

5. Tea, coffee, repeat! Savor it.

6. Stay busy. The extra time and energy fasting gives you can be used to do so much. (I started taking an online class.)

7. Don’t deny yourself during eating times.  You are really working the self-control/self-denial muscle during fasting times. Go ahead and give in to cravings during eating window within reason. One day, I had 3 cookies & half a pint of ice cream. I still lost weight that day. You won’t want that all the time or everyday. But if you do, it probably won’t hurt you.

8. Pay attention to healthy cravings. On that same note, if you are craving a veggie stir fry with coconut milk, couscous, and garbanzo beans -have THAT. Craving brocolli? Mangoes? Eat that. Fasting makes you much more in tune with what your body needs.

9. The power of later. If you are really wanting something at night pr when you wake up. Just tell yourself you will have it later.  You’re not telling yourself no just “not now”. That is so powerful.

10. Weigh every day or every other day. The scale will probably be going down every day. This is very encouraging & really empowers you through fasts.  If it stops going down, shorten your eating window until it starts again. Also, take before & after pics. They are really the best for measuring change.

 

 

 

 

 

Intermittent Fasting and Breastfeeding: Round 2

Intermittent Fasting and Breastfeeding

Okay so here I go again.  I’m about 3 months postpartum and ready to actually make this pregnancy fat vacate the premises.  I battle between being okay with it and miserable.  But in the end, it’s my gluttony that wants it to be okay (and I can’t buy a new wardrobe anyway just to serve my love of poke cakes).

I began intermittent fasting once again about 12 days ago.  In that time I have lost nearly 4 lbs.  You can say this is water weight, but this “water weight” was not moving through days of clean eating and high intensity interval training workouts like Insanity.  I have been stuck at a weight that I’d rather not say.  Every time it would get below aforementioned unmentionable number it would bounce right back up.  With this way of eating, I feel I have gained control of the scale AND my eating/cravings/gluttony/etc.

Okay so you can follow really any diet

My results after first baby.

My results after first baby.

.  If you like to eat low carb, eat low carb.  If you like to eat clean, do that. If you like donuts every “morning” for breakfast, you can do that (sort of- more on that later).  I choose to eat a fairly large meal most days as my first meal and it usually consist of eggs. That’s really my only consistency.

This way of eating does not say what to eat.  It says when to eat.  You have a window of eating.  In this time you eat nearly the same amount of calories that you normally would.  It’s just that the amount of time that those calories are spread across is smaller so your meals are larger (and more satisfying).  I also find that denying myself during those mini-fasts each day strengthens my self-control muscle.  And shrinks my appetite.  So, that when I have the option to “feast” I usually just eat normally.  (This happened for me around day 7.)

I will add also that my chosen method of intermittent fasting is lean gains or 16/8. I don’t follow this strictly.  In the beginning, I continue to shorten my eating window until I get the desired effects & weight loss. My sweet spot is about a 6 hour eating window. I usually eat between 1:30 and 7:30 or 8:00.

The Reason IF is a Good Diet for Postpartum Breastfeeding Moms

You are strengthening that will-power, self-control muscle.  This is a muscle that along with your own physical muscles atrophies during pregnancy.

Intermittent fasting breastfeeding

Day before delivery (baby 2) and day after.

The reason I think this diet works great for losing postpartum weight is because like I said: You are strengthening that will-power, self-control muscle.  This is a muscle that along with your own physical muscles atrophies during pregnancy (for most of us mortal women).  After months of never telling yourself “no” (understandably), it can be a real challenge to get back to the reality of some self-denial.  Feeling hunger and saying no for many hours strengthens this ability. It’s much easier to tell yourself no when “yes” is just around the corner like pushing yourself running up a hill is easier when you know there is a downhill coming.

Feeling hunger and saying no for many hours strengthens this ability. It’s much easier to tell yourself no when “yes” is just around the corner…

Also, and along these same lines, you are able to eat more satisfying meals including dessert if you want.  It’s difficult to eat 1500-1800 calories (the recommended caloric restriction recommended for breastfeeding moms that want to lose weight) if you spread those calories over 18 hours, 3 meals and 3 snacks.  But if you are eating two large meals or one large meal, then we are talking 800-1000 calorie meals.  That is a ton of food if it’s clean food!  And a good-sized portion even if it’s not.

So you are sort of hitting it from both angles.  But then there is another thing that happens.  Because of the biological effects of fasting each day, your appetite and cravings change.  You suddenly find that even though your eating window opens, you’re not really feeling that much urgency to eat.   And you’re craving mango-topped tilapia and rice! Yesterday, for example, I was craving oatmeal with brown sugar and butter.  So I had a big bowl for my first meal.

Another reason this works great for breastfeeding moms is the rate of weight loss.  It is between 1 & 2 lbs per week which is completely healthy for baby.

Intermittent Fasting, Breastfeeding, and Hunger Hormones

And lastly… Intermittent Fasting helps you take charge of those dang hunger hormones!!! 

And lastly… Intermittent Fasting helps you take charge of those dang hunger hormones!!!  In pregnancy and breastfeeding there is an increase in the hunger hormone called ghrelin. There is also an increase in insulin-resistance (or lowering of insulin sensitivity).  And although Human Growth Hormone is elevated by pregnancy and breastfeeding, there is evidence that the effect is compounded with fasting.

Ghrelin. This little devil is what makes you STARVING after a breastfeeding session.  It definitely works against any fat loss goals during the first 6 months of breastfeeding.  Usually ghrelin levels begin normalizing at around 6 months post partum, and this is why breastfeeding moms tend to lose the most weight between months 6-12 versus formula-feeding moms that tend to lose it sooner.

During the last half of pregnancy, your insulin sensitivity begins to plummet so that your body can beginning building up those lovely fat stores that will feed and nourish the coming baby.  This causes you to crave sweets and simple carbs and at the same time causes your body to turn those simple carbs to fat faster. IF (intermittent fasting) will normalize your insulin sensitivity hence why your craving change.  This will also affect how your body utilizes the simple carbs that you DO eat.  (By the way, speaking of delicious carbohydrates…IF suggest eating these carbs at the end of your eating window, later at night which is when I normally crave them.  It allows more time for the fasted stated to eat through those.)

And lastly, HGH or human growth hormone.  Remember when people used to inject or ingest this and then starve themselves aka fasting to lose a massive amount of weight quickly.  (Are people still doing that?)  Well, I confess I actually haven’t studied the science on this one. It’s something about survival of the baby making the body release fat stores more readily.  But I know that these levels are already elevated in pregnant and breastfeeding women.  So, IF would only heighten these levels causing an even greater fat burning effect.  Also, you are fasting every day so those hours would be optimized for fat burning.

Links on Hormones and Intermittent Fasting

Modern science has confirmed there are many good reasons for fasting, including:

  • Normalizing your insulin sensitivity, which is key for optimal health as insulin resistance (which is what you get when your insulin sensitivity plummets) is a primary contributing factor to nearly all chronic disease, from diabetes to heart disease and even cancer
  • Normalizing ghrelin levels, also known as “the hunger hormone”
  • Promoting human growth hormone (HGH) production, which plays an important part in health, fitness and slowing the aging process

http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2012/05/04/fasting-effects-on-human-growth-hormone.aspx

 

The entrainment of ghrelin is part of what makes the 16 hour fast so easy after a few days adaptation. ..”If you eat all the time, ghrelin secretion will not be well controlled,” said Silver, the paper’s lead author and the principal investigator of the study.”

http://www.leangains.com/2009/08/ghrelin-and-entrained-meal-patterns.html

Energy & Intermittent Fasting: Something all Breastfeeding Moms Need!

Right now I’m typing  with one hand, rocking Kate with the other.  Sofia is rustling from her nap. I need energy to keep up with these two!  I guess every body needs extra energy, but breastfeeding moms especially whether you’re a new mom or two under two or mom of four.   The times of fasting, you don’t have to devote to putting together a meal.  One less meal every day really adds up to quite a bit more free time.  Plus, don’t ask me why but there is an increase in natural energy, creativity, and heightened mood & awareness.   These are very valuable weapons to add to your mom arsenal any mom will tell you.  I usually break my fast after nap time and after I have prepared lunch and fed it to my toddler. It works out great.

 

Links to my previous posts on Intermittent Fasting and Breastfeeding

And another post on intermittent fasting and breastfeeding

For a list of FREE and CHEAP resources on intermittent fasting specifically for women.

 

Stay tuned.

I’m entirely too embarrassed to post my before and afters until my after gets a little back to pre-baby/normal.  But in a couple weeks, I will most likely post an update which includes progress photos.    I also plan to post some very necessary tips for success that I didn’t have time to post here now.  I’ve got two babies screaming.  Gotta go!

 

And Keep My Eyes Above the waves – Baby Kate’s Birth Story

And keep my eyes above the waves…

(Baby Kate’s Birth Story)

 

During my labor my water was broken early. The doctor said based on my last labor that we could probably expect a baby by two or 4 PM.

It was 9 AM.

So the contractions, pitocin-induced, began. They grew in intensity and duration. I watched them on the monitor. They had placed in me a microchip that allowed them to monitor with complete accuracy the contractions as they came and went.

So I watched them: rising to a peak my tightness growing, discomfort and pain increasing slightly with each hour. I watch the monitor– those peaks and valleys, those electronic waves. I watched waiting for the crest that would tell me my pain would begin to diminish in a few seconds.

And the nurse checked me again and again hour after hour. The boredom turned anxiety as progress became slowed to a halt.

I asked her, “since you broke my waters what happens if I don’t dilate?”

She looked at me with the same concern that she had looked at me after my last two “checks”. “We’ll just wait and cross that bridge when we get there.”

Something in her eyes told me she thought we would get there.

A flood of self-doubt, guilt,  condemnation, and fear overtook me. Had I induced too soon? Should I have waited for her to come naturally? Was I less far along than I thought?

Did I tell them the wrong date of last cycle on purpose at the beginning? I couldn’t remember clearly now.

Was my selfishness with wanting pregnancy to be over going to harm my baby?

“Don’t rush the seasons.” … God had said to me only days before. Were the consequences of my impatience crashing in upon me? Had I “awakened love before it’s time”, before my time, Kate’s time had come?

My mind was a storm amidst this electric ocean. I watched praying that God would forgive me. Praying that he would save me. Praying that he would deliver me and my baby girl.

I played the song Oceans over and over. I tried to imagine the scene of Jesus on the water and me stepping off the boat, waves of contractions of pain and fear all around. I tried to keep my eyes on his mercy and love. Tried to keep my eyes on his faithfulness even when we are unfaithful. The lyrics washed over me.

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders. Let me walk upon the waters wherever you would call me. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander. And my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my savior.

And so I stayed in his presence. I asked for prayer from friends and family. I had my husband and mom my hands on me and pray.

Again I listened.

You call me out upon the waters were feet may fail.

I saw myself as in a vision, I was clothed in an almost translucent pale dress. The pieces of the skirt blown behind me by the winds all around. My hair was long and red, blowing behind also. My arm is outstretched as I took slow confident steps toward where I reached.

Forward. Forward. Onward. Losing sight of the storm all around with each step, and then my hand fell into His.

“His right hand embraced me (SOS 2:6)” and we began dancing on a sea of glass (Re 15:2) as I gazed into his eyes – steady, passionate fire.

And I thought to myself, even from this moment – hours before she’s born, motherhood is a storm of fear and uncertainty at times.

“Your sovereign hand will be my guide.”

Only gazing at his face. Only reaching for his grace turned the stormy waters into a sea of glass. The steps of mothering into a beautiful dance.

“You’ve never failed. And You won’t start now.”

A memory of how he had let me this Shepherd and overseer of my soul (1 Pet 2:25). I always think back to that moment in the jail cell where I would spend a year of my life. That moment on a gym mat in the tent made by a single scratchy blanket pulled over my head to shield all the onlookers from seeing my uncontrollable sobs.

He was there. He came into that makeshift tabernacle. He had never left. And he never would. From then to now, he has led me.

And now he has blessed me with the greatest gift. He has poured out his unmerited faith in me. His faith that I would lean. Faith that in all of the difficult moments of wilderness, I would come out leaning on my beloved.

And so I leaned as the waves of contractions grew in strength I called to this Faithful One. In a short time after i had recruited prayer, after I had begun to pray, worship, and meditate on Him, my body began to react swiftly.

Strong nausea overtook me suddenly. The pain grew to such strength that I felt like my Baby Kateeyes are going to burst. The nurse updated me with my quick progress moment by moment. Now six. Now 7 1/2. Now nine. And then the miracle of this crescendo happened at 8:04 PM with fewer than five pushes.

 

She was here! And it was okay because He was here too. The waves on the monitor had stopped, but the storm on the waters of life wouldn’t. The waves would rise and fall, pain and peace, heartache and joy.  But always, we must keep our eyes above the waves.

Though my sorrow be taken from me, yet will I sing, yet will I praise you. Though the joy taken from me.  Yet will I laugh.  Yet will I shout unto You. Though the light be hidden from me, yet will I walk, yet will I run after you. THough my heart be slain within me, yet will I trust, yet will I follow You. -Audra Lynn, Yet Will I Sing

I will call upon your name. Keep my eyes above the waves. My soul will rest in your embrace. I am yours and you are mine.

I am my beloved and he is mine.

 

 

 

 

 

Daughters of Healing Beauty

imageEvery day she grows more beautiful. And I care less & less about my own beauty. She is my beauty. She has become my beauty. My love for her is my beauty.

I was terrified when I found out I was going to have a girl. “Why would God do this to me?” I thought. But now… She is my healing. She washes me daily. If I have all daughters, 5 of them, and no matter what they do or do to me, I would never wish it any other way. I thank God for His wisdom and sovereignty.

I’ve let go of a beauty fleeting and I’m grabbing hold of a beauty eternal. I feel it: a shift inside. Like when the winds change directions at the end of the season. It’s like I’m letting go of one rope I’ve been tugging on for years and laying hold of another that instead longs to pull me.

My daughters, my balm of Gilead. Like an ocean of healing wave after wave, day after day, my Lord and my God uses you to make me whole, perfect…beauty. And may he always. Come what may.

Psalms 45 – Grace is Poured Upon His Lips Meditation

Grace is Poured Upon His Lips – Spontaneous Sung Prayer from Psalms 45:2

You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever. Ps45:2

 

It’s when I gaze on him, who is beautiful, the fairest one that I find out who I am.  It’s then that I can see my own beauty. Grace is poured upon his lips and He holds the words of my life.  His words give me life.

I began envisioning the woman at the well after beginning the prayer in Psalms 45.  My heart just naturally went there.  And I saw Christ through her eyes.  Christ looking at her.  She had the same revelation as Hagar:  He is the God who sees.  He is the only One who really sees us.  He looks on us, through us with eyes of purity, passion, and fire.  And we feel no shame.  It’s when He sees us and speaks to our deepest places that our deepest thirsts and desires are satisfied. We are all the woman at the well.

Then she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, You-Are-the-God-Who-Sees; for she said, “Have I also here seen Him who sees me?” Gen16:13

When He sees us, he sees us in our perfected state.  In our life, He has promised to take us from glory to glory.  He promises to not only be the author but also the FINISHER of our faith.  He always finishes what he starts.  So, when He looks on us and sees our weakness, immaturity, and darkness, He declares that we are lovely.  We are clothed in His righteousness from the very start.  And when the Father looks on us, he is overwhelmed with love as if looking on his perfect son.

“There is no flaw in you, my love.”

Slow Down Pregancy Weight Gain by Changing Only One Habit

slow pregnancy weight gain

Slow Down Pregnancy Weight Gain by Changing Only One Habit

I needed to slow down pregnancy weight gain.  I started this one habit when I had been gaining weight too quickly during my current pregnancy. I had slow pregnancy weight gaingotten a “talking to” about gaining too fast and the dangers of that. The result? After a month, my doctor gave me an “A” at my next visit for weight gain, baby growth, and all other aspects. I only started doing one thing: Eating two apples a day, at night. Here’s why I think it slowed down my weight gain.

1.  Apples are hydrating. Hunger and cravings are sometimes confused for thirst.  Especially during pregnancy, we get extra thirsty.  Eating those juicy apples really satisfied this possibly misplaced craving.

 

2. Apples are low in calories- between 50 and 75 calories in a whole apple. I was watching my caloric intake and substituting apples instead of other nighttime snacks really reduced the number of calories I ate each day.  I might still have a couple chocolates but not near as many.

 

3. Apples are full of fiber, aka filling. Foods high in fibre will fill you up without costing you too many calories.”  This has many other benefits that are helpful during pregnancy such as keeping you regular.

 

4. Apples take time.  At night, I will slice the apple into thin slices.  This way, I can  still mindlessly nibble while watching television, but my snacking is beneficial rather than adding to pregnancy weight gain.  Not only does it take time to wash and cut the apples, eating them can also be a time-consuming process with them sliced this way.

The benefits of eating apples are well documented and include things like detox, boosting immune system, and improving heart health.  That’s great. But I’m especially thankful that they saved me anymore “talks” from the doc.

Stay Fit During Pregnancy: 2 Tools

Stay Fit During Pregnancy: 2 Tools

fit pregnancySo I’ve added a couple tools to my arsenal in this fight for a fit pregnancy despite this awful inguinal hernia and not being able to work out like I used to. One is super-geeky and one is super-easy.

I blogged before about my fit pregnancy struggle.  My Fitness Pal has been a great tool to get in the habit of tracking what I am eating.  I’m not working too much on improving the quality of what I’m eating.  I’m really just trying to get in the habit of tracking period.  This will make it easier to lose the weight post partum.   Well I got something for my birthday and wanted to share because if you are looking for a way to not gain weight too quickly while pregnant or just need some motivation to be active, this item is great.

Okay.  I’m really geeky and sort of addicted to my Iphone.  So, this worked for me awesome.  It’s called a FitBit.  Here’s what it looks like: 
Well this is what the one I got looks like.  You wear it on you all the time.  It’s basically just a fancy pedometer.  You can also use it to track how well you are sleeping. (I’ve done this a few nights, and it’s fascinating.)  I was hoping it would be a heart rate monitor too, but nope.  It’s just a pedometer.  The thing is – I’ve used it on distances that I’ve measured before and I’ve used it on the treadmill and the distance that it measures is VERY accurate.   Also, I’ve used my heart rate monitor. This is the one I have:  along with an app called DigiFit to see how it compares.  The calories burned that the FitBit measures is also very accurate.

Monitoring using the FitBit is easy.  You can either press a button on the FitBit itself, look on your phone on their FitBit app.  Or look at your progress online.  Okay here is the really cool part:  you can hook up MyFitnessPal (and DigiFit) to the FitBit.  so it will adjust your calories burned in the MyFitnessPal app and adjust calories eaten in the FitBit app.  Here’s a screen shot so you can see what it looks like in both apps:

fitbit my fitness pal

 

FitBit for Fit Pregnancy:

Okay so here is why this tech tool is especially helpful for staying fit during pregnancy.  As you reach the uncomfortable stage like I’m approaching now at 31 weeks, you do NOT feel like working out.  But this little thing motivates you to just be active in your daily normal activity.  If a place is close, I walk there. I take Sofia on short little outdoor walks.  Or I get up off the couch and do something at night just to get a few steps in.  You see, this gadget will congratulate you if you reach 10,000 steps.  Since wearing it, most days I reach this goal.

It’s made me feel better to meet a goal each day.  My sense of accomplishment used to come from a really challenging workout.  Now it comes from these steps.  It has been great in making me feel better psychologically and physically.

Plus, by monitoring my activity AND my eating I can see when I am over-doing it on the snacking and cravings.  This way I don’t feel so out of control.  I can’t wait to put the FitBit to use when I can get back to my hard workouts, but for now I’m satisfied with the way I’m using it.

The Second and Super-easy Tool for Staying Fit During Pregnancy (& anytime)

This is totally not cool, but I’m going to blog about this one later.  I’ll come back and post a link in this entry later.  I want to devote an entire post to it.  So, be checking back to Runholy.com later.

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