Bumpdate: 24 Weeks

Woosh, woosh, woosh.  Every time we have the chance to hear Baby Szed’s itty-bitty heartbeat, my heart swells.  Sometimes I still am in disbelief that I have a little person living inside my belly.  Today Ryan and I went to our monthly check-up and the doctor said that both momma and baby are doing great!

After the appointment I treated myself to a mani + pedi to celebrate the good news {and to complete this weekend’s wedding look} :)   “Princesses Rule” shellac on my fingers and “My Chihuahua Bites” on my toes.

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I was hoping to start sharing bumpdates {baby bump + updates} earlier in my pregnancy so that I could look back {and laugh}, but that didn’t happen.  Later is better than never, something is better than nothing.  I’ll try to do a first trimester recap sometime soon, but I warn you – I napped a lot, felt nauseous, and ate a lot of ramen noodles.

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Due Date:  Thursday, November 13th.  We’re taking bets on when she’ll actually arrive because there are a few family members with November birthdays.

Gender:  Girl!  We found out on June 26th {20 weeks}.

Name:  Choosing a name is one of the most difficult things we’ve had to do yet.  There are so many names, the possibilities are endless.  We ultimately chose a family name – it was the only name that Ryan said “I like that!”

Symptoms:  No aches or pains.  The only thing that’s uncomfortable is that it feels like I just ate a big Thanksgiving dinner and need to unbuckle my belt…  Except I’m not wearing a belt, that’s just my belly.  Thankfully, still no stretch marks.

Movement:  Yes!  And it’s so cool, although she sleeps most of the day and dances all night.  Party animal in the making!

Weight Gain:  My weight fluctuated up and down a pound or two during the first trimester, but I have been slowly gaining weight each week since.  Today the doctor said I’m right on track.

Cravings:  Nothing intense, like “I’ve gotta have it right now or I’m going to have an emotional breakdown!” but I’m still loving fruit, carbs, and salt.  Salt on everything – salads included.  Berries, cherries, melon, and pineapple as far as fruits.  Some type of doughy carb, crackers/chips, or pasta makes an appearance in every meal/snack.  As for protein,  I’ve stuck mostly with cheese, yogurt {regular, not Greek}, eggs with ketchup, and deli meat.  Some days I can’t stand the thought of meat.

Aversions:  None at the moment.  Coffee was a big aversion until just recently.  Some days I’ll sip a cup with breakfast, but I haven’t been able to finish a full cup.  The smell still sometimes makes me queasy.

Fitness:  I’m still working out about 5 days a week, give or take a day depending upon how I feel and our schedule.  Walking on the treadmill {with an incline} has been my go-to.  Today I ran 1 {very slow} mile but it was the first mile I’ve run in months – happy, happy!

Sleep:  I’ve been falling asleep in bed, but waking up around 1 – 2AM and moving out to the family room to sleep on the couch.  It helps to keep me from rolling onto my stomach.  I still haven’t purchased a full-body pillow but it’s high on my list.

Question:  What’s your favorite salty food/snack?

Question:  What’s your favorite nail polish color?

— Allison

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Selfie Self-Confidence {Guest Post}

Hi!  I’m Megan.  I’m a health and wellness coach in Dallas, TX and I blog over at The Lyons’ Share Wellness.  I’m so excited to be here today and grateful to Allison for letting me share with you!

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When I was thinking about what to talk about here on Life’s a Bowl, I started by thinking of the three things that come to mind when I think about Allison:

  • First, her delicious looking breakfasts (especially pancakes)…  But I have to admit, I tend to stick with my favorite yogurt breakfast at least 50% of the time and I’ve already blogged about that (my 4th ever blog post)!
  • Second, her love for Ryan and Charlie…  But she can talk about those better than I can!
  • And finally, the way she radiates so much confidence and happiness in her workout selfies shared via Instagram…  So that is what I’m going to talk about today!

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If those pictures don’t make you smile, I don’t know what will!  And it’s not just Allison…  It’s actually a scientifically proven fact that exercise boosts your self-confidence!

  • A study by the Medical College of Georgia showed that 20 – 40 minutes of daily exercise dramatically improved the self-esteem and reduced depressive symptoms in overweight children.
  • Another study in the Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology showed that increased physical activity led middle-aged women to perceive their attractiveness and physical condition in a better light.
  • A third study showed that young girls who exercise had a better self-esteem in their adolescent years than those who didn’t.

I could go on and on, but I don’t want Allison to kick me off for boring you!

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The point is…  There are many benefits of exercise, but improved self-confidence is one that often gets forgotten in discussions.  I’ll bet that you can identify the feeling in yourself.  Think back to the last time you had a really great workout.  Maybe you ran a new-to-you distance without stopping, maybe you deadlifted a higher weight than you ever thought possible, maybe you really rocked it in your last Zumba class.

Whatever it was, do you remember that feeling of “I just ran five whole miles!  I can do anything!”?

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We see the impact of exercise-boosted self-confidence all over social media.  The idea of posting a public image of myself with a shiny, red face, greasy hair, and sweat stains all over my shirt really does not sound like a good one.  Yet, I do it all the time and so do so many others.  Have you ever thought about why?  It’s probably because in that moment, we feel so great about ourselves and accomplishing our workout that we want to share it with the world.  To motivate others, to get praise for what we did, to make someone smile, to hold ourselves accountable…  And it works!

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So today if you’re looking for a reason to exercise, just think about how great you’ll feel about yourself afterwards.  Get out there, do your best, and then show it off to the world!

Tell me in the comments…  Have you felt that boost of self-confidence in yourself after a workout? What workout makes you feel the most confident?

~~~~~

Thanks so much for sharing such a positive and uplifting post, Megan!  I took a peek at it when Megan originally sent it to me, but since the post was in HTML {code} format, I couldn’t see the pictures…  Until I pasted everything into WordPress and the code transformed into text and pictures.  I laughed.out.loud. :D   It’s definitely my first ever #selfie collage!  But I think she did a fabulous job capturing some of my most {ridiculously} silly selfies.

Selfies are always fun, but always awkward.  Don’t you agree?  Should I tilt my head?  Stick my tongue out?  What do I do with my hands?  How does my hair look?  Nonetheless, Megan’s message is spot-on…  Exercise does in fact foster self-confidence.  We’ve all heard that quote “‘Wow.  I really regret that workout.’  Said no one ever.” and it’s absolutely true.  The only workouts that we can regret are the ones that didn’t happen.

— Allison

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Thinking Out Loud: If they only knew…

Thanks to two snow days and a 2-hour delay, this week has flown by!  Last night I worked my first team night at the running store.  Team night is when a local high school’s cross country/track team comes in to get fitted for shoes for their upcoming season {and receive a super sweet discount!} – the store was the most crowded it has been since I started working, but it was a lot of fun!

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Thanks Amanda for hosting another link-up!

1.  Truth: I used to refer to the treadmill as the “dreamill,” but this past winter I’ve had a change of heart.  It’s always there for me, it’s never covered with ice/snow, the temperatures are consistent, and the hills are…  Nonexistent.  Plus, it’s a great chance to catch up on trashy TV {i.e. Bravo}.

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2.  Yes, yes, yes.  Runner’s World is so smart.  This is exactly why I run.

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3.  Did you celebrate National Pancake Day?  If you missed out but still want to celebrate this weekend, check out Tuesday’s Favorite Finds: National Pancake Day post.

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4.  Or if pancakes don’t tickle your fancy, what about muffins?  These Wheat-Free, Dairy-Free Morning Glory Muffins would be great to make and freeze for a quick weekday breakfast.

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5.  Today I took a personal day because I had two different dermatology appointments.  PSA: Get yourself checked!  Melanoma doesn’t discriminate!

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going back in April to have the mole that’s circled removed & tested

6.  Speaking of health, I want to talk more openly about my “health hiccups” on the blog this year.  By doing so I hope to connect with others who have gone though/are going through similar situations, share my experiences, and inspire others to keep a positive attitude.

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shared via Instagram this morning

7.  I love when “throw everything together and hope for the best” dishes turn out to be delicious!  These meatballs contain a few ingredients that may make you question my cooking ability.  I want to make them once more before I share the recipe, but in the meantime, I need help naming them…?

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8.  Another “throw everything together and hope for the best” recipe…  Except, this one has a name.  Three Bean Bell Pepper Chili.  With a side of dog.

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9.  I overheard a group of high school girls chatting and one of the girls said “Ugh, I’m starving!  I overslept this morning and didn’t have time to eat breakfast or pack a lunch.”  Her friends suggested she go get a sandwich, but she ended up buying a banana and pretzels because “I need to fit into my bathing suit for spring break!”  Wish I {could have} said something.

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10.  And an obligatory snow picture.  Everything looks so tranquil covered in snow.  I wonder if we’ll see another storm this season?

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Question:  Do you ever jump into conversations if you overhear something that grabs your attention?  Yes, I do BUT I think it really depends on the situation and topic.  Chatting about coffee in the line at Starbucks?  Sure, I’ll jump in.  But a conversation between high school girls and body image, that’s a tough one.

Question:  Snow – sick of it or hope for more?

— Allison

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