Shifting Gears

So the blog has been dormant for literally years. <blush>

And so much life has happened. So much life.

With life comes change, and the blog will be taking a new direction.

Instead of a dietetics student, I am now a middle school math teacher.

My blog (primarily) won’t be an education blog. There are plenty of those and I may occasionally feel called to share some great insight or idea from my classroom.

But I still feel passionate about nutrition. Not just passionate, but it is a crucial part of migraine management for me. So how does a middle school math teacher focus on nutrition? How does she make it work in real life?

THAT is my plan for the focus of this blog.

I have found that I’ve been at this long enough that I have a few tricks up my sleeve to make healthy eating work. It’s an ongoing process. I learn more every week and many weeks I learn from doing it wrong.

Let’s figure this healthy eating out together.

Sweet Potato Hash Deliciousness

This post will make things perfectly clear: I am a fitness and nutrtion blogger, NOT a food blogger.

However, I did want to share a recipe with you that has become a family fave.

10251930_249646618555337_2432394674372016902_nStart with:

1 pound sugar free bacon (or sausage):

Step 1:
cook bacon in large skillet

Step 2:
While bacon is cooking, wash and dice:

2-3 sweet potatoes

After bacon is finished cooking, remove from pan. Drain most of the grease, but leave a little to cook the diced sweet potatoes.

Cook sweet potatoes until soft, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

When sweet potatoes are cooked, crumble bacon and stir back into sweet potatoes. Divide sweet potato/ bacon mixture into sections so that you have room for:

4-5 eggs, depending on the size of the skillet

Step 3:
Break eggs into the hollows left in the sweet potato/ bacon mixture

Step 4:
Cover and cook for 3-5 minutes, depending on how you want your eggs.

Eat and enjoy! Serve with avocado slices for added deliciousness and healthy fats!

I confess that this is not my own creation – I am NOT about that life! — but it’s an adaptation of one I saw on a blog almost 2 years ago. If I could find the original post I would send you there because that person is a GENIUS!

Because this is SO filling and high carb/ fat, it’s really a better choice as a breakfast or brunch recipe — when you would likely burn all of that off later. Reality is that occasionally I cook myself eggs for breakfast, but if there is “dice vegetables, then cook for 10 minutes…” in a recipe for a breakfast? Yeah, I’m out.

This is real food for real life for real people.
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God Has Something For You In This Journey

A little more than 2 years ago now (fall of 2012) I decided I would return to school. There is a long series of events that led this 40-something to that decision. Trust me, one of them wasn’t “I’m trying to put some fun in my life and free up a little time…”

School was my “I will NEVER…” So for me to jump back in meant I was determined. If that didn’t indicate commitment by itself, me surviving general chemistry as my first class should.

At the time the plan was for me to take a few prerequisites then go to a nearby university for a Master’s in Nutrition. It would take maybe 3 years, then I’m good to go.

{Insert several hundred hours of struggling with and crying over chemistry — I and II}

As I do towards the end of every semester, I get excited about what I’ve accomplished (hint: if you’re only taking one class, the answer is “not much”), look at what I have left, and explore the job opportunities that will be available to me upon completion. The reality was and remains, that with a Master’s in Nutrition, there aren’t as many jobs available as if I would get my Registered Dietitian (RD) certification.

But to get an RD would take SO! LONG!! And I was already (early) 40-something. Did I really want to be (at best) late 40-something, if not 50-something when I finished this?

I waffled. I moaned. I agonized. But I knew the truth.  I would get my RD.

I don’t want to go to all this trouble and only have half the doors open to me. I want all the doors! And I’ll turn 50 anyway. I may as well be closer to doing what I want to do. But it will take SO! LONG!! (grumble, grumble…)

I was saying all of those things to a dear and wise friend. I wish you could see her beautiful countenance. She is a woman at peace who radiates the joy that comes with it. As I was moaning the length of time school would take, she looked as if that was the most delightful thing on the planet.

“God has something for you in this journey, Sarah. I can’t wait to see what it is!”

I think of that from time to time. I am still over 3 years (at best) away from my end goal.  I feel as if I’ve already been in school too long and I have way too long to go.

Just this week I was bemoaning all of it. My classes don’t feel like they are getting me any closer to my end goal, and I’m sacrificing friendships and relationships to spend time on my studies (and don’t even get me started on the conditions our family puts up with due to the lack of housekeeping going on).

And there it was:

“God has something for you in this journey, Sarah.”

And I wanted to be a sassy-pants to whoever said it.

“Well, it better be good because it is wearing me out!”

And I thought of my end goal, and the clients I will be privileged to walk beside. What will I be asking of them on their journey toward better health? I SAY it all the time, but, being fairly healthy, I haven’t lived it out like others will be called to: good health habits don’t change overnight, nor do the benefits all show up immediately.

God has something for you in this journey.

Every test, every week, every quiz and project gets me that much closer to my end goal, even as I tread water here in the middle, feeling as if I’m going nowhere.

Every healthy choice, every workout, every week that you add up more healthy choices, the closer you get to your end goal of health, even on those days when you feel as if you’re starting completely over for the 437th time.

God has something for you on your journey toward health.

I can’t wait to see what it is and walk it with you.
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For Better Health, Watch Your Words

Words mean something to each of us based on our experiences. That includes the words we say — to ourselves and others — about the choices we make for our health. Being a woman, I am well acquainted with what a woman’s self-talk about her body and health sound like… it’s not good. I suspect men generally put their health and weight into the compartment of the brain labeled That Which Shall Not be Thought Of with Astrophysics and Miley Cyrus. Something you may want to consider, though, is how you talk (out loud) about your food choices.

When presented with the office birthday cake that, let’s be honest, really tastes like Crisco on a sponge, instead of saying, “Oh, I can’t eat that. I’m on a diet,” phrase it to show that you are making your own choices. “I don’t eat that,” represents you being in charge of your own body, your own health — and you are! And you are the one choosing not to eat that at that moment because you have taken charge of your health. That sounds better and feels better, doesn’t it? Words have weight. Words have meaning. Speak strong words about the way you take care of your body!

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