Earn the View

LosArcosIt only took us 25 years of marriage to head out and actually disconnect from the world for a week. We were blessed by friends and family who made it possible for Cathy and I to actually go someplace new and beautiful. As we planned the trip, we both knew we didn’t want to be “normal” tourists. This new healthier life that we are living has opened the doors for us to look for new adventures everywhere we go. This anniversary trip wasn’t going to be typical. Now understand, relaxing and unwinding from life is important and needed sometimes, but that doesn’t have to mean laying around a pool all day or sitting on a porch enjoying a view. We did plenty of that…but we added some new things.

One of these adventures involved kayaking. We’ve kayaked before, but never like this. From a local beach we went out determined to see one of the world’s iconic vacation views…the Arch of Cabo San Lucas. After working our way through some beautiful, yet rough, waters we arrived. It was worth every bit of effort it took us to get there. I have to say it was a pretty cool moment for both of us as we sat in a little two person kayak where the Bay of Saint Luke meets the Pacific Ocean.

Around us were plenty of other boats as well. There were many water taxis filled with tourists being motored out to see the arch. They would pull up, take lots of pictures, and then be taken back to the shore via a gas powered motor. This was a great way for them to see the sight but it just wasn’t enough for us. As we traveled the 30-45 minute journey back to the beach we both talked about how “special” this was. We felt we had earned the view. Our hard work paid off and the memory we had created was amazing.

Earning the view was more than just seeing this beautiful location. It was about us seeing ourselves differently. The view of ourselves has been drastically changed by this life change. We’ve worked hard to be healthier and we are now seeing life in a whole new light. Our view has been drastically altered. BUT, this is not just something “special” that has happened to us. It’s available to you as well.

As you continue on your journey to health, ask yourself…what are you doing to stretch yourself in new ways? How are you at trying new things? Where can you do something different and “earn the view”?

We say this often through our blog, but it needs to be repeated. There is a new life out there to be lived. Grab ahold of it today. There is so much to see and so many lives to be impacted. Let’s work together to live to the fullest.

- Mark Cornelison
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Seasons

four-seasonsLast week I was on vacation and I got to do some amazing hikes in Pennsylvania! It was crazy to me that it wasn’t even September yet and some of the leaves on the trees had begun to change color. And that got me to thinking about the idea of “seasons.”

It’s clear to me that God is behind the idea of seasons. It’s out of our control. The earth spins on its axis and it spins around the sun and it has some predictable results. We can, to some degree, anticipate and get ready for what’s ahead because we have some idea of the pattern.

This idea of seasonal thinking can come into play in your health journey in a couple ways. First, your diet can reflect the season that you are in. Second, the exercise you do can be seasonal as well.

When it comes to nutrition, I encourage you to embrace the season you’re in. Learn to anticipate the season, enjoy it, and find fun healthy foods to match it!

For example, in the summer you should definitely check out any local farmer’s markets in your area! These fresh veggies go great on the grill with fish or chicken! Also in the summer, you should find some homemade shakes that you love…mine is a frozen blueberry shake!

In the fall and winter when it’s colder, I find some great soup recipes. Beans are a staple during that time. And how about some hot drinks…yes! Oh, and of course some baked apples with cinnamon and Truvia on them…yum!

Depending on where you live, exercise can also be very seasonal. I get mad at my friends in Texas when they are jogging in shorts in January because I live in Michigan where you’d die inside of 30 seconds if you tried that. So winter in Michigan means you can go to an indoor pool, or spin class, or hit the weight room more, while summer means more jogging and biking and hiking!

I have found that I need two thing that seem to contradict each other: consistency and variety. I need to do something long enough to get in a routine and get the health benefits out of it, but I don’t want to begin to hate it. This is true of both my diet and exercise. So the idea of “seasons” is perfect. Get the consistency you need by doing something for a season, and then switch it up. You’ll find yourself looking forward to it the next time that season is about to arrive.

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens…” Ecclesiastes 3:1

- Buddy Shuh
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Just Try it

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHave you ever been convinced that something would be great when you tried it? Several years ago I was watching an infomercial for a product that could clean any spot off of anything. This product was absolutely amazing as they demonstrated how it got rid of anything you get on any surface. They were so confident in their product. It was amazing as they applied it to carpet, clothes, furniture, and many other surfaces. It could get out any stain and even make it look better than it did before. They had me convinced! I bought two tubes for a huge spot that got on the carpet of my apartment. I was so excited because maybe this would be the answer for me getting my deposit back…

I received it in the mail and read the instructions carefully. As I applied the “amazing” product my worst nightmare appeared before my eyes. My once tan carpet began to turn green…very green! I applied water and the spot got worse. This “amazing” product wasn’t so amazing. It was then that I began learning that things aren’t always what they seem. However, there is one thing in life that is actually better than what my mind can imagine.

“Taste and see that the Lord is good!” Psalm 34:8

I love this verse because it is God asking us just to try His way and if you do you will see that He is good. He doesn’t have to have an infomercial. All we have to do is just get a little “taste” of God and you will see how good He is! He is so confident in His goodness that He invites us to try it knowing that we will see how amazing He truly is! 

This got me thinking about “taste” and “healthy eating”. This seems to happen to me a lot now!

Sometimes when we think about healthy food we think how bad it is going to taste or I tried it when I was younger and I didn’t like it. Maybe it is foods you have never tried. God has given us a variety of healthy foods to help us get the essential nutrients we need each day. We add unhealthy things to these foods to make them taste “better”. Our taste buds get used to the sweetness of sugar and we don’t even taste the natural sweet in fruits and vegetables anymore. I will never forget how amazing a banana tasted after I had omitted sugar for two weeks and vegetables had a new amazing flavor I had never really tasted before. When I was really “tasting” I was amazed how good healthy food really was. Realizing how good God is might not be in that exact moment but over a few days you began to see His goodness. This is the same way with healthy food. We realize how much better we feel and how good it taste once we get away from the unhealthy stuff. It is funny how now when I eat those unhealthy foods they don’t taste as good as I remember or I feel terrible after I have eaten them. So my challenge to you today is to “Taste” and see that healthy is good! 

Healthy recipe to try: Roasted Veggies 
1 cup fresh or frozen broccoli, baby carrots, cauliflower or any other veggies you like
Braggs Amino Acid – liquid
garlic powder
Lo Salt
black pepper
red pepper flakes (optional)
spray olive oil

Preheat oven to 425. Line a cookie sheet with foil. Spray foil with oil. Place cut up veggies on foil. Spray veggies with Braggs Amino Acid. Sprinkle veggies with garlic powder, Lo Salt, and pepper. Add a few pinches of red pepper flakes if you like it a little spicy. Roast in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes. If veggies are frozen it might take a little longer. Enjoy!

- Cathy Cornelison
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