Christa’s Soap Box – Running to Clear My Head

What do you do when things get hectic and it’s all you can do to keep up with the pace of life? I go for a run!

I’ve always enjoyed exercise as a way to clear my head and think about my daily tasks at hand. I do it first thing in the morning, before things get too busy, and it always gives me an extra boost of energy for the day.

20140415_christa_runRun, Christa, run!

Over the years I’ve dabbled in different types of running – short distances, long distances, road running and trail running. I’ve competed in the occasional triathlon and have even completed a couple of marathons (when I was in slightly better shape)! Lately though, I’ve really enjoyed getting out in nature and running with Jason out in the desert behind our house. We don’t worry too much about speed or distance, and it’s been very freeing just to run for the sake of running.

I compare running a lot to quilting. Some days I’m on and other days I’m not. At times, the task at hand may seem like it takes forever to complete. Sometimes I feel like one hurdle overcome is just a drop in the bucket compared to what I want to achieve. But when I step back and look at the larger picture to see how far I’ve come (with both quilting and running), I get a deep sense of satisfaction with a job well done. 🙂

20140415_run_skylineThe Las Vegas skyline off in the distance – what a view!

Sometimes I’ll listen to books or music while I run; other times I’ll tune into quilting podcasts, or have an impromptu business meeting with Jason while we run. Many of the ideas we have put into place have come about through nice long chats while we cover the terrain!

Many times while I run, I’ll come up with blog topics I want to explore. Ideas come to me when my head is clear, and it is very therapeutic to write down my thoughts into words and share them with so many of you. As I continue to grow my blog and expand my presence in the quilting community, I’ll keep reminding myself to keep things in perspective. There will be many things I’ll continue to share, and a few projects that will have to wait until the proper time to be revealed.

20140415_jason_runJason often leads the way on our runs. He’s a good man to follow!

Blogging for me is like a journal, chronicling my quilting life with a bit of personal narration thrown in from time to time. I enjoy it so much, that it has become part of my almost daily routine. I’ve made a promise to myself that no matter how busy I get, that’s one area that I don’t want to neglect. I’m just so grateful that so many of you are along for the ride!


Christa’s Soap Box – A Drop in the Bucket

Sometimes I feel like I’m not getting anywhere fast; the daily routines just seem like a drop in the bucket of what I’m trying to accomplish. However, I know that in time, those drops will add up and my bucket will be not only be full, it will overflow. (Hopefully this will occur sometime before I actually kick the bucket!!)

Trail Run

Me, Jason and his sister at the start of a very wet and rainy trail race!

Jason and I ran a trail race this past Saturday and it was literally raining buckets! We’ve decided that we want to run a half-marathon trail race next spring, so training begins now.

I took up running many years ago as a way to get fit after having children. I’ve run two marathons and several half-marathons over the last few years, but it was during a period of time where I wasn’t sewing very much.

Once I rekindled my desire to quilt (all the time), running fell by the wayside (and I gained a few pounds…) Now I’m learning to find balance with both hobbies I love – quilting and running.

Trail Terrain

Peaceful view from the trail. I was trying to catch the next person up ahead in front of me. (I did!)

Even though I yearn to run at the speeds and distances I used to, I know it will take time to once again build up my endurance. Each daily run is another drop in the bucket towards my goal.

I think this is very similar to my goals for quilting, both personally and professionally. Sometimes it seems like it will take forever to design and make all the quilts I desire, and even longer to get them in front of the people who I most want to see them. However, each stitch I take and each quilt I make is another drop in this bucket, too.

Trail Finish

Jason at the finish – you got to ring a bell at the end! How cool!

Most of all I’m learning patience. I’m the sort of person that wants it all done now, but I’m slowly coming to the realization that substantial goals are worth waiting for and worth striving for: day by day, step by step, and drop by drop.

A Fun Lunch Date and Some New Shoes

Last week I met with Melissa Corry and her MIL for lunch when they came into town on their way to Quilt Market (yes I’m very jealous that I didn’t go but I can’t wait to read about it on her blog and others!)

Melissa and MIL

Melissa Corry and her Mother In Law (and a cute bag!)

Isn’t she sporting such a fabulous bag??

We had a great time chatting at about 100 miles per minute. Talking is just so much faster than emailing and blogging, LOL!! I knew she was a kindred spirit when she told me she prefers flat 2-D sewing (quilts, wallhangings, etc) to 3-D sewing (totes, accessories, etc).

After a fabulous time eating yummy food and swapping quilt stories, I met up with my hubby in the afternoon to pick out my mother’s day gift, these fabulous new trail shoes!

New Shoes

New Shoes

I love running, but I’ve put that on the back burner for the last few months. Just last weekend Jason finished his volunteer term serving as Bishop of our ward from church (that’s like a pastor leading a congregation). Needless to say, this has taken up a bit of our free time over the last 5 years.  I told him once he had more time, we’d workout together.

Running in Utah

Jason and Christa running in Utah

We had a beautiful run when we were in Utah for HMQS and now I’ve committed once again to workout at least 4 days a week. I just have to stay balanced with both exercise and quilting. Too bad I can’t really do both at the same time, LOL!

Huge Sandwich

Melissa’s Sandwich from Claim Jumper. Yummy!

After what I’ve eaten over the last few months, some good detox is in order now. 🙂

Weight Loss Week 11 – Summer Fun Activities

I’m into my 3rd month of my weight-loss routine and am chugging along. I lost 1 pound this week for a total of 16.2 pounds gone. It’s slow but steady. You can read about last week here.

Exercise is an integral part of my daily routine. Whether for weight loss or just general fitness, I always feel better if I start my day off with a good workout. Because it’s getting hot outside, I needed to come up with some cooler summer activities.

YogaFor a nice relaxing indoor workout, I love to do yoga at least once a week.

I have a couple of workout buddies that will humor me on a regular basis. We just pop in a video and follow along.

It feels so good to stretch our muscles, especially after a hard run the day before!

On really hot days we’ll swim a few laps in the pool. Jason’s offered to be our swim coach and give us a few pointers here and there.

Coach JasonSwimming Laps

By the way, I’m not in any of these pictures because I’m the one taking them!

Here are this week’s tips on how to beat the summer heat while still staying active:

1. Scale down my outdoor activities. My favorite exercise is running but rather than doing a long hot run,  I’ll just run around the block or two in the early morning before it gets too hot. If I do need to get in some distance, I’ll hit the treadmill at my neighborhood gym and put on some really great music on my ipod to break up the monotony.

2. Play more with the kids. My younger kids love to go to the pool every chance they get so getting in the pool and splashing around with them gets everyone moving. They like to go on bike rides too, and nothing feels cooler than the wind in your face while cycling!

3. Do it with friends. Whether it’s sewing or exercising, it’s always more fun with my pals!