I am so excited to be guest blogging on Eternal Lizdom. My name is Ashli and have been following Liz on her blog and in real life for a little over two years now.
I first met Liz when my family and I began attending the same church as Liz and her family a little over 5 years ago. I remember how in awe I was when Liz did a Mary Magdeline monologue for Easter. I thought, this girl has talent! Liz and I didn't cross paths again until several years later when we were chatting one evening and she mentioned how she would maybe like to think about possibly singing on the music team that I am a part of. I was so excited to hear this and felt that "God nudge" to talk to our Associate Pastor who leads the music ministry at church about it. Well...a few weeks later, Liz showed up at practice and we just clicked. She is such a fun person to be around and we feed off each others energy. I am so glad to have Liz in my life.
A little more about me. I am a working wife and mother of 2 amazing kids. I have a son who is 6 and in first grade and a 3 year old daughter who is on the verge of moving up to the pre-k class at her daycare. My husband teaches and coaches girls basketball and has recently been empowered to give a few sermons at our church and another church in the area. I work as a business analyst for a local credit union and love the work I do there. I sing on the music team for our church and have also been blessed to be a part of several opportunities of giving through my church family.
This past year has been a great year of growth for me. I have graduated from having to carry a diaper bag, began working on a homework routine with my son and most important of all to my sanity, I have began taking an interest in "me". I struggled with post-partum depression and anxiety after having my son and took medication up until 2 years ago. It took me a year without medication and birth-control with hormones to finally get used how my body and mind work. Once I began realizing who I was, I knew I needed to begin feeding that so that I could feed others. I re-engaged my love of reading, took up knitting hats for the homeless and began a plan to lose weight.
I lost a few pounds through Weight Watchers, but knew I needed to make permenant changes if this was going to stick. I started taking Healthy Choice/Smart Ones/Lean Cuisine lunches to work, choosing healthier snacks and started walking. Due to our family schedule, we determined that it would work best if we had a treadmill at home. I was just going to walk...nothing more. Seriously...only walking...but then Liz started running and I thought, well I could do that too. I signed up for a 5k and began a training plan. Well, to make a long story short, I have done 2 5k races this summer and walk/ran a half marathon. I have also lost 30 lbs.
I would still like to lose about 15 more pounds, but I want to do it the right way. When I am mentally ready to make that next step permenant. I want to build muscle and endurance and become healthier in the process. If it takes a little longer than the 2lbs a week pace of "dieting" it is okay with me. I want it to feel natural (not to be read as "I want it to be easy").
That brings me to the actual point that inspired this guest post. I am starting a new initiative. I have renamed my blog (which needed a heavy dusting off since the last post said Merry Christmas!) and will be recording my thoughts and milestones as I "Blog 500 Miles". Yes, my goal is to walk/run 500 miles in the next year. So, I invite you to hop on over and check it out. I am going to try to post an update once or twice a week as I progress towards this goal and am going to need much encouragement. Also, I welcome anyone who wants to "go the distance" with me!
Thanks for reading!
Thank you for this post, Ashli! I am also very grateful for our friendship and so glad you listened to that nudge and got me involved with music team- otherwise, we wouldn't be such good friends!
This part of her blog entry on her new blog really hit home with me:
On days I work out, I am happier, have more energy, feel better rested, am a better parent and wife and have a desire to live out God's will for my life.
When I don't work out...well, let's just say it is not pretty. Nothing is on time, I am short fused and I really feel like it would be best if I crawled into a hole so I wouldn't be so irritated with everyone and everything around me.
I'm going to do it. I'm going to join Ashli on her challenge. 500 miles in one year. Who else is going to join her??
Show her some love with lots of comments and by following her blog!