Sunday, July 29, 2012

Run Your Own Race!

~ Guest post by Hope Reid, D.C. ~



Hope Reid, D.C.

This morning, in an effort to run faster and longer, my running buddy Janille and I decided to do interval training. The plan was to sprint as fast as we can for a quarter mile, then cool down for a quarter mile, then sprint again and so on. Janille happens to be a more seasoned runner than I am. For the first interval, my goal was to try to keep up with her. I started out as fast as I could. Halfway into the sprint, I became extremely exhausted and had to slow down in order to finish. It was difficult trying to catch my breath and recover. During the second interval, I was even more determined to keep up with her. To my dismay, I burned out faster than the previous interval. After another quarter mile recovery, I said to Janille, "How to you manage to run so fast and look so calm?" She said that she increase her speed gradually and basically do what she feels. Then she said something that totally put things into perspective for me.


She said "Hope, you gotta run your own race."


Simple, yet profound in that moment for me. Janille and I are on two very different levels when it comes to running. Although we were running "together" at the same place and time, we were running two individual races. The third and final interval, I decided to do just that...run my own race. I started out with a much slower pace. Halfway through, I still had enough energy to give it my all in the final stretch. I felt much better and the recovery was also better.


How many times in life do we look at other people and perceive them as our competition. We look at their successes and failures as the bar by which we measure our own life. We become preoccupied with either catching up or making sure we stay ahead. Often time we fail to consider the years of hard work, preparation, and discipline it took as well as the tears and challenges they had to overcome to get to where they are in life. When we begin to dwell on what others are doing, we tend to lose focus and become distracted from our own race.


Whose race are you running? Have you been so absorbed with checking out the competition that you've deviated from your course? The bible reminds us to run the race that is set before us. I believe that God has placed a specific course with unique experiences, trials and triumphs for each of us to run in this life. While there are those who can motivate, inspire and encourage us, let us remember to always look to Jesus for the strength and patience required to endure this race. Let’s run our own race!


Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us...Heb.12:1


When Hope isn't running her chiropractic business, taking care of patients, educating the community, being a good wife, an involved mother, an engaging sister and friend, she's writing all about it in her blog, Defining Hope.





Thursday, July 26, 2012

Go Team USA

Double Portion Inspiration is excited about the opening of the Summer 2012 Olympics in London.  


Our entire family will be gathered around the television watching the historic event.  Opening ceremonies are so thrilling as teams parade around representing  their home countries from all over the globe.  You come into the stadium as an Olympian.  The best in your sport.


Olympic Park
Opening ceremony-Friday, July 27th at 7:30pm on NBC


Go USA!
For this Fun Friday, leave us a comment and let us know about your favorite event.  (Posted by Roslyn)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

You Never Forget Your First

As many of you know, I spend many hot days and nights on baseball fields.  My son plays travel baseball and it is a year round sport.  The absolute worst time to play outside is in the middle of July.  The weather is hot, stale and humid.  But as a parent, you sacrifice your comfort to cheer them on and be their biggest fan.


This week we played a tournament in West Palm Beach.  I went to this park many times before but this time held a special memory.  When I decided to run my half marathon last November, the first placed I started to train was at Okeeheelee Park. I hadn't been back to the park since last year.  


It is a beautiful park that has hiking trails, hills, boat dock, tennis, baseball and soccer fields.  This free park is wonderful entertainment for the whole family, including your pets (they also have a dog park).


Walking through the trails again this past week helped me remember the exhilarating feeling of training for my first half marathon.  Training consumed my every thought.  It was an extreme and scary goal (13.1 miles).  After many long and hard weeks of training, I achieved my goal and crossed the finish line.


When was the last time you had a first?


St. Pete, FL Women's Half Marathon
Do you set goals in your life? Are you stuck feeling complacent, always going with the status quo? 


 I hope this blog post inspires you to set a first goal that challenges your body, mind and spirit.  Don't think inside the same box all the time.  Dare to dream differently.  


A new proposal at work, a first serious relationship commitment or even the first time becoming a volunteer.  Whatever it is try to find something new and let it become your FIRST


Leave us a comment and let us know about a recent FIRST. (Posted by Roslyn)

Sunday, July 15, 2012

No more sippy cup!

Having a young child is fun and challenging.  I'm the mother of a 3 year old and it doesn't take long to find out that they have an innate ability to make their desires known and won't stop until they get their way.  My son has shown us his determination to get his way numerous times especially when it comes to his sippy cup.  Even though my son is almost 4, he continued to find comfort in his sippy cup when drinking milk.  Each time we tried to convince him to consider another way to take down his milk, he wasn't having it.  I could have forced the issue but the need for peace overruled the moment. 


It somewhat boggled my mind why there was such a connection to his cup.  Especially since he transitioned from the bottle to a sippy cup and from the sippy cup to a regular one with very little opposition. 

Diapers to pull ups. Pull ups to underwear. Pacifier to none at all.

Every other transition in his life was quick and painless, why wasn't this one?  Well, I am so excited to share that after using a sippy cup for nearly three years, our son made a huge declaration this week. 


No more sippy cup!


Out of nowhere, he no longer wanted the sippy.  He made a decision and that was it.  After asking him and talking about it for sometime now, this week was his week.  We were so excited that we called family members, gave him high fives, and took pictures.  In my eye, this milestone in his life meant the end of him being a "baby".


Here's the lesson that my son inspired. His new season started with a decision!  The same holds true for you.  Maybe there is a child or spouse you are praying for that doesn't need to give up a sippy cup but an addictive habit.  Maybe acceptance of your body and all it's flaws needs to start with a decision. Don't give up on your prayers and faith.  Even though you've been praying for awhile, God is faithful to his word.  The Bible tells us to be persistent in our prayers.  Ephesians 6:18 (MSG) shares the following:


In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other's spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.


Just how my baby boy made a decision, so can you and the precious loved ones you are praying for. (Posted by Renee)






Thursday, July 12, 2012

Restaurant Review


Steak 954-W Hotel in Ft. Lauderdale
 Renee and I share a passion for food.  Most nights you will find the both us at home cooking dinner or on the phone talking about the most recent yummy recipe we prepared.  She often shares her cooking recipes with our readers.


For a fun Friday twist I decided to review a restaurant.  A surprise trip from my husband to the W Hotel in Fort Lauderdale landed us at Steak 954.  We had previously dined at the restaurant before for lunch.  The dinner was a completely different experience.



You walk in Steak 954 and you are instantly mesmerized by the 2000 gallon jellyfish tank.  It is the centerpiece of the restaurant.  The atmosphere was lively and surprisingly full of customers, for what is normally called the "off season".  Nakisha, our waitress, was knowledgeable and helped guide every decision of our 4 course meal.  From the selection of our wine to the dessert at the end of the meal, her expertise did not disappoint.


Ty and I next to the jellyfish tank
 I enjoyed the fact that we were not rushed through our meal.  We were allowed precious time to enjoy a romantic dinner over candlelight.  Since it is a steakhouse, we chose a wet aged 12oz filet for our entree.  It is cooked at 700 degrees and prepared to perfection.  It tasted like butter, melting in your mouth.  We paired our filet with a truffle potato gratin and Felino Malbec from South America.  I didn't have room for dessert but Nakisha insisted we try the pastry chef's peach cobbler.  Presented in a cute ramekin, it was moist and delectable (topped with vanilla bean ice cream and sea salt).


I had a wonderful experience at Steak 954.  We were surrounded by 6 different servers and mesmerizing jellyfish.  So now it's your turn.   Leave us a comment and tell us about your favorite restaurant.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Buffalo Chicken Dip

My nephews are staying with us for the week and we are having a blast!  Last night they talked me into letting them have the kitchen along with my daughter to prepare dinner.  They gave me a list of ingredients to purchase and told me they would take care of the rest. 

For about an hour, they were busy cutting, stirring, and setting the table.  I normally eat dinner around 8:00 but last night, I didn't care that we didn't eat until 10:45 (that's how long it took them to pull everything together).  It was awesome to see them so excited to serve us dinner!  They even used the formal dining room table instead of our normal four seater breakfast table.  I wanted to share the recipe because it was easy, flavorful, and kid-friendly. 

Here are the ingredients:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce (recommended: Frank's)
  • 1 rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 1 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • Crackers, bread, celery or carrot sticks, for serving

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

In a medium saucepan over moderate heat, melt the cream cheese until smooth, about 3 minutes. (We used the "soften" feature on our microwave to speed up the process) 

Add the celery, hot sauce and chicken (Purchase a chicken from your local grocery store deli.  Remove the skin and discard.  Take the chicken off the bone and either shred or roughly chop). 

Mix well.

Transfer the mixture to a 9-inch pie plate and sprinkle the crumbled blue cheese on top (we used a combination of mozzarella and cheddar instead of blue cheese). Bake until hot and bubbly, about 25 minutes. Serve with tortilla chips, crackers, bread, celery or carrot sticks.

Buffalo Chicken Dip
 
All the great flavors of Buffalo chicken wings without all the fat of the chicken skin and oil. Wanna take it up a notch and remove some of the heat?  Add 1/2 cup ranch dressing to the mixture before baking. (Posted by Renee)

Don't forget to "like" us on Facebook or join the conversation on Twitter  @doubleportionin




Sunday, July 1, 2012

Live Free

African Elephant
A recent trip to Zoo Miami with my boys left me hot and curious.  The 3.5 mile trek through the zoo really leaves you believing you have escaped to another country.  My oldest rode a camel and my youngest son attempted to feed a rhino.  These beautiful and massive animals are nature at it's finest.  It  appeared like it was "mating" day at the zoo.  I had to explain certain poses formed between two animals that just kept me laughing on the inside.

What keeps these animals "held" in their surroundings?

The great feature of Zoo Miami is that you get up close and personal with the animals.  It almost feels that you can reach in and become a part of their habitat.  The bears, lion, tigers, and elephants are huge.   I wonder why they never try to live free.  The snakes are caged and have to deal with constant visitors banging and clinking on their glass homes.  The monkeys swing from tree to tree but never swing far enough to escape.

Enjoying the shade
Animals obviously don't have natural reasoning like most humans.  But many, at times, can seem smarter than humans.  Take for instance the giraffe that refused to leave his shady tree so that we could feed him.  We sat in the sun waiting for him to come and he never did.  At that moment, he was "smarter than a human".

Whatever it might be-the trained zoo keepers or delectable diets, these animals stay in bondage for years.  Even though most can outrun and over power their trained human handlers.  Many of us (like the animals at Zoo Miami) don't live free.  We live behind the shame of our past.  We live chained to our mistakes and hinged to our negative thinking.

The only place that most of us are limited is in our minds!  Your biggest obstacles are only in your thoughts.  Courage is not the absence of fear, it is moving forward in the presence of fear.

"So Christ has really set us free.  Now make sure that you stay free, and don't get tied up again in slavery..."  (Galatians 5:1 NLT)

We must break free from the chains that hinder us from living abundantly.  We can't stay stuck in "what if" scenarios.  Take the risk and live free.  You are not free because of your own efforts.  You are free because God has declared that you are free.  Overcome your shyness, face your fear and have courage that God will carry you through to "abundant living".  Don't just exist-get out there and LIVE.

Happy 4th of July!  

This holiday don't just celebrate America's freedom.  Celebrate your own.  Live Free!  (Posted by Roslyn)