Tag Archives: body

BOOM! I finished the Whole30!



Yep. It’s done.

I did it.

I didn’t cheat once. Not a lick, not a taste, not a sip of off-limits food.

I’ve never felt so accomplished.  Honestly, college, jobs, motherhood, races, triathlons, yoga certification, career, speaking to groups, starting a business, writing, teaching, studying, learning, blogging, growing, parenting…who cares about any of it…the fact that I could go 30 days with no sugar and no gluten and all the other stuff I said no to…Y’all…it’s darn near a miracle.

Here’s what I know now.

When you eat sugar, you want more sugar. Just say no.  #tamethesugardragon

You have a clearer mind when you eat healthy and drink never.

Habits are hard to break but not impossible.

You are in control of what you eat.

You may hear the Lord talk to you in this battle with food. You pray, “Lord, please make a huge gusty wind blow these chips out of my hand” and you hear Him say back to you…”Just put them down beloved.” It’s a convicting experience.

Sleep more and lose the snark.

Cream in coffee is overrated.

Sweet potatoes are my best friend.

It is not that hard to buy real food and cook it.

If you get the #tigerblood, you will need to buy new running bras.  The ones from 1999 aren’t cutting it. Also, it doesn’t look good if you are running with your hands over your boobs.

I survived movies with no popcorn, a meal out at a restaurant without an appetizer, a boat ride without a beer,  TV watching without Twizzlers/M&Ms, Starbucks without cream, and a McDonald’s drive thru without ordering a Diet Coke (Iced tea is okay! Unsweetened).

It can be done.

So, day 31 came and I planned to go out to eat Mexican food with the family.  I really wanted tortilla chips.  They were just fine. Not great. So I had a few, ordered a salad and decided maybe all the things I want aren’t all they are cracked up to be.

Maybe the thing we think we can’t live without will just be “eh” when we get it.

Maybe all of this is just an exercise in figuring out what is “worth it”.

Turns out, I am. Worth it.

So are you.

medicine food

©2015 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved

Whole30 graphic from Whole30










Hi Feet! It’s Hands!

It has been awhile since I’ve posted here.  There are so many amazing things happening! I’m all over the place so this is going to be long.  Go ahead and get your coffee.  I’ll wait while you do what you need to do to hunker down and spend some time here.  🙂 I’ve missed all of you!

If you are not following Great Big YES on Facebook or following me on Instagram (@suebidstrup) then maybe you have not seen all the fun yoga that is going on over there.  Please take a look and follow me! Our Holy Yoga community is having a Peace on Purpose challenge for January – we are showing a new pose every day!  I’m trying poses I’ve never done before! I’d love to see your pictures too – remember to use #peaceonpurpose.

I just chuckled to myself thinking my mom is reading that last paragraph as if it’s in another language and thinking, “What are you talking about?!?!” #whattheheckisahashtag

I saw this on Facebook and laughed out loud.  Not at you mom, with you…we are all learning and our babies are teaching us!


Here are some yoga pictures from Instagram in case you are not on social media.  Join the holy yoga community at @holyyogaministries.



On the note of being all over the place…I’ve been thinking about all of our different personalities and how God really knows what He’s doing.  My son was telling me the other day how he doesn’t like things loud and crazy, he likes to be chill and hang out with one or two friends at a time, he doesn’t like big parties.  This is confusing to me. He doesn’t like big parties? WHY? I love big parties! But since he’s my third child, I am beginning to be a little bit (a wee little bit) wiser and I realize that hey, guess what? MY KIDS AREN’T ME!!! They are their own people! My job is to love them.  Not to try to make them into something they are not.  God doesn’t make mistakes! He gifted us with everything that we are and each and every one of us is a beautiful and necessary part of His plan.

This brings us to our different roles in the body of Christ.  We are all so uniquely and wonderfully made.  But sometimes, truth be told, we don’t love how we are made.  We might be the hands but we wish we were the feet.  We might have gifts that we don’t fully embrace because we are too busy looking over at the people who have the gifts we wish we had. You know what I mean?

Let’s start with the Word.

1 Corinthians 12:12-31 

The Message (MSG)

You can easily enough see how this kind of thing works by looking no further than your own body. Your body has many parts—limbs, organs, cells—but no matter how many parts you can name, you’re still one body. It’s exactly the same with Christ. By means of his one Spirit, we all said good-bye to our partial and piecemeal lives. We each used to independently call our own shots, but then we entered into a large and integrated life in which he has the final say in everything. (This is what we proclaimed in word and action when we were baptized.) Each of us is now a part of his resurrection body, refreshed and sustained at one fountain—his Spirit—where we all come to drink. The old labels we once used to identify ourselves—labels like Jew or Greek, slave or free—are no longer useful. We need something larger, more comprehensive.

 I want you to think about how all this makes you more significant, not less. A body isn’t just a single part blown up into something huge. It’s all the different-but-similar parts arranged and functioning together. If Foot said, “I’m not elegant like Hand, embellished with rings; I guess I don’t belong to this body,” would that make it so? If Ear said, “I’m not beautiful like Eye, limpid and expressive; I don’t deserve a place on the head,” would you want to remove it from the body? If the body was all eye, how could it hear? If all ear, how could it smell? As it is, we see that God has carefully placed each part of the body right where he wanted it.

But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of. An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn’t be a body, but a monster. What we have is one body with many parts, each its proper size and in its proper place. No part is important on its own. Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, “Get lost; I don’t need you”? Or, Head telling Foot, “You’re fired; your job has been phased out”? As a matter of fact, in practice it works the other way—the “lower” the part, the more basic, and therefore necessary. You can live without an eye, for instance, but not without a stomach. When it’s a part of your own body you are concerned with, it makes no difference whether the part is visible or clothed, higher or lower. You give it dignity and honor just as it is, without comparisons. If anything, you have more concern for the lower parts than the higher. If you had to choose, wouldn’t you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair?

The way God designed our bodies is a model for understanding our lives together as a church: every part dependent on every other part, the parts we mention and the parts we don’t, the parts we see and the parts we don’t. If one part hurts, every other part is involved in the hurt, and in the healing. If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance.

You are Christ’s body—that’s who you are! You must never forget this. Only as you accept your part of that body does your “part” mean anything. You’re familiar with some of the parts that God has formed in his church, which is his “body”:

miracle workers
those who pray in tongues.

But it’s obvious by now, isn’t it, that Christ’s church is a complete Body and not a gigantic, unidimensional Part? It’s not all Apostle, not all Prophet, not all Miracle Worker, not all Healer, not all Prayer in Tongues, not all Interpreter of Tongues. And yet some of you keep competing for so-called “important” parts.

But now I want to lay out a far better way for you.


There’s a BETTER WAY!

We should walk around saying, “Hi Feet! It’s hands!  I’m so glad we get to do this thing called life together today!  I appreciate you walking me around! How can I help you today? Let’s get this party (not necessarily a big party but a celebration that we both find comfortable) started!”

I especially love this line: If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance. 

Who are you in the Body of Christ?

Take some time today to think about your gifts and then embrace who God made you to be.

The world needs you.

©Sue Bidstrup 2014 Great Big Yes ™ All Rights Reserved

If you are in the LaGrange area and want to join me next weekend, I’ll be speaking at the St. Francis of Xavier Catholic Women’s Club luncheon. What an honor! Can’t wait! Here’s the invitation.



Don’t talk about our bodies? Really?

My friends and I got together today for lunch.  We all have matching bracelets.  All crosses. My friend says they are a beautiful touch stone for our friendships, built on faith and wrapped around all of our lives.  Which of course I love and felt I needed to commemorate.

I took a picture. But we all agreed we didn’t like the picture because our hands looked “old”.

That’s right.  Our hands.  So we took another with our hands facing up.

Image 1

I actually like the hands up.  Ready to receive.  Open.  Anticipating God’s blessings and abundance.

When did we start worrying about our hands looking “old”?

Of course, we also talked about our bodies and how they are changing and how we want to eat better, work out more, all the things friends discuss as they get older.

I read an article recently that is floating around the internet in which the writer tells us to never talk about weight in front of our kids, never say you feel “fat”, don’t have a scale, bake cookies with 6 sticks of butter in honor of your grandmother and DON’T MENTION THE BUTTER, enjoy them with your kids, live life, have fun, don’t count calories, etc. She says we should never talk about our bodies, we should never talk about our daughter’s bodies and we should never mention anything about another woman’s body, ever.

The article made me mad.   Because honestly, I’ve failed at each thing she mentioned. So this was my response… Well, isn’t that nice? You are probably naturally thin and either have no kids or have thin young kids…meaning younger than 10.  Because like it or not, once we hit a certain age, people will talk about weight and diets and food and calories and they certainly won’t turn a blind eye to 6 sticks of butter.  I mean, let’s be honest…should we?  Gross.

Then I realized maybe I just felt bad because I wish I hadn’t failed at all of those things.  And it made me realize that I’m lashing out at her because even though she seems idealistic and a little judgmental, she’s right.  Those are good ideas.

It’s just that as a woman, I’ve felt fat and thin and tired and sometimes hungry and sometimes stuffed.  I’ve tried diets and cleanses and lifestyle changes and I’ve run and lifted weights and done yoga.  I’ve eaten out of boredom, anger, and worry.  I’ve lost and gained and worn jeans that cut off my circulation.  I’ve fought with my body and with my image of my body and with my expectations and with my desire to have rock hard abs.  I’ve wrestled.

The truth is, I’m human.  And I’m human in front of my kids.  I’m hoping in the long run they will understand me and love me for this.  Of course I don’t berate myself in front of them but they’ve seen the juicer.  I mean, who are we kidding, they’ve seen me count points and they’ve suffered through my “all natural” phase.

I do want to be positive for my kids.  I want to honor my body and model healthy acceptance of what God gave me.  I shouldn’t expect perfection for me or for anyone else.  So while I won’t be eating 6 sticks of butter anytime soon, next time instead of hiding with my pound of M&Ms, I will share.  And then I won’t complain about all the M&Ms I just ate.

As Maya Angelou says, “Everything in moderation…even moderation in moderation.”  Amen?

It’s a difficult thing for all women.  I can’t tell you how to talk to your daughter or what to eat or how to honor your body.  I just know it should be honored.  But how do we do that?

Let’s start where we should always start…in prayer.

Lord, help me.  I have failed miserably when it comes to body acceptance and being a model of kindness to self.  I am sorry.  Help me to be positive and healthy – mind, body, and soul.  I appreciate the body you have given me.  I actually feel like I should write it a note so here goes.

Body, thank you for being there for me.  Thanks for getting me up that rope in gym class and thank you for all of those glorious bike rides.  Thank you for the way you have carried me in the water and the way you can jump on a trampoline and oh gosh, thank you so much for the skiing and the climbing. Thanks for all of the walks to and from school and the subway and the bus and all over campus.  Thank you for carrying me and allowing me the joy of holding my babies.  Thanks for my babies.  Thanks for the years of running and the yoga.  Thank you for the yoga.  The bending and stretching and breathing.  Yes, thank you for the breath.  And thank you for the way you hug and they way you love and the way you sense the world around us.  Thank you for the belly laughs and the butterflies and the goosebumps.  Thank you for sending warning signs when I’m not well, thank you for recovering.  I’m sorry for the abuse, physical and emotional…I’m sorry about the fried food and the beer and the wine and all that chocolate.  I’m sorry for the over indulging so many times, thank you for hanging in there. Oh gosh, sorry about the sun – I regret the iodine and baby oil and tin foil.  Sorry about the blisters.  At times, I have taken you for granted and criticized and been downright unappreciative.  But no more.  I will honor you.

Same goes for my hands.  I’m sorry we were critical of you today.  Thanks for the years of shaking and reaching and holding.  Thanks for the ability to touch and feel and pray.  Thanks for the snapping and pointing and waving. Thank you for all the “hello’s” and all the “good-bye’s”.

Lord, give me eyes to see the wonder and beauty of my body and my hands.  Give me a heart full of gratitude.  Help me to remember that years and experience only enhance beauty. And that Joy on the inside makes you glow on the outside. Help me to teach my kids about that kind of beauty…the glowing from the inside out kind. The kind that never fades.

©2013 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big YES™ All Rights Reserved