New Normal: Mindfullness, Mellow Miles, and Fall Meal Planning

I’m embracing my new #normal well. Living totally in the now with a mild awareness of the future. The only planning I’m doing these days is for meals, setting some new running routes, and on the design of our new home( more on that in future blogs). Our newlywed story continues as we make plans to pack up our house and rent at the beach for the winter. A new side of town with new restaurants, new running routes, and new adventures. The perfect place to foster my new normal, especially in the way of fitness.
The pregnancy hormone in my system didn’t drop right away. It took weeks. Blood tests have been a Thursday ritual the past month. More practice in the virtue of patience. I found this to be a cruel reminder from the universe, however it pushed me and pivoted me to put my life back together in new terms. A new normal. Thankfully, as of last week, they are down and I am moving forward with this new #normal.
MINDFULNESS: I’m 10lbs up from my usual healthy weight. This could be a major meltdown moment. A trigger. In my previous life, it might have been. Instead, I am mindful of why this is the case currently. Having more pride in my body, my health, and what I am still capable of. Mindful there are others with harder more difficult cards. Many having more debilitating or even permanent health battles. For this, I will not complain nor compare. Mindful of the new #normal, I am thankful I’m able to increase my activity and heal. A temporary space. #Perspective
I’ve been slowly amping up my intensity minutes each week, specifically those of the vigorous variety. You Garmin trackers know what I’m talking about. I’ve feeling sooooo good these days! Physically and even emotionally.
 I’m feeling more peaceful and in control of my emotions too. Staying inward.
We ran into an acquaintance over the weekend who didn’t know we had lost the pregnancy. It wasn’t as hard to articulate the loss as I had thought it might be. I didn’t do that alone. That’s strength, peace, and the persistence of prayer. That’s God.
 I’m blogging from the beach. Sitting in the sun post run while Jason takes a spin on the prone board from the park. I now enjoy just simply existing. Observing. It’s so relaxing. It is the new normal. The Bay is glass, like a lake. It’s September at the beach. The parking lot was nearly empty. Not like the crazy, confusing, summertime crowds from July and August. A reminder that EVERYTHING returns to quiet after chaos. I’m my own reminder as well. The new normal. Aware of what occurred, but submerged in the moment.
FITNESS: My current running situation is not goal oriented. Each time I lace up, it’s with reckless abandon. No plan. No expectation. No limit. More of a mellow approach when taking to the pavement and trails. After about a few minutes into my run sessions, it becomes clear what I need that day and I simply obey that. Often it is solo. But sometimes it is with a friend. Sometimes the run is long and slow. Sometimes it’s a walk. Sometimes it’s a mix. And sometimes there’s speed, more specifically the need to work, to sweat, to push. 4 miles of freedom on this Sunday morning. 2 low key miles, 1 with speed play, and 1 with walking and strides. It left enough energy to tackle the Neptune Fest with J for a bit. All completed by lunch time. The kind of day that’s action packed and equally restful. Pushing all meal prep to Monday.
MEALS: When it comes to our nutrition, I’ve amped up our fall flavor palette. Lots of sweet potatoes, pumpkins, and spices. I love a recipe makeover. I am known for doing it with many things, but especially cocktails and baked goods. I can’t turn down the pumpkin aisle at Trader Joe’s without grabbing a few of these boxes. However I add my own twist on the pre-made wonder.
Almost Homemade Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins
Preheat oven per box instructions. Gather your ingredients. This is where we spice things up! Swap those eggs for 1/2 cup pumpkin puree. Leave out the oil and instead add 1 well ripened banana. Also, add in a healthy dash or of cinnamon and pumpkin spice. Finally toss in two capfuls of vanilla extract.
Mash the banana, pumpkin purée, and spices in a mixing bowl. Add in the muffin mix and water. Combine. *Optional add ins are the chocolate chips and pecans. Bake according to instructions. Let them cool. Either enjoy immediately or wrap individually to last all week. Perfect for breakfast, a snack on the go, or as a “bread” side for chili or soup!
This fall is a mix of everything for us. Our new normal is anything but routine and we wouldn’t trade it or the expericne we’ve gained in this change of season. It is like an adventure with an unknown outcome! Together we are soaking up the sunshine days and prepping for a change of scenery. While we are planners, we are going more day by day, with an openness to what awaits.

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