Hi Hi!!! We get to talk about working out today, woo hoo! Let me start with a story. Over a year ago I was talking to someone and I was exclaiming how excited I was that I was getting to the gym twice in one week. They however did not enjoy my excitement and continued to tell me that going to the gym twice was not going to do anything for me. I did not agree and was explaining that any amount of time focused at the gym was good and I was just so proud of myself for the consistency. We ended not seeing eye to eye and I left sad and frustrated that someone didn’t share in the apparent victory for my life.
I want to share in the victory for your life! This blog about working out is not for you to feel frustrated, less then, or that you are failing. Instead this is a moment in time for you to realize just how amazing you are, how amazingly beautiful God created our bodies, and how we get the privilege of taking care of them.
I just came back from Disney and had the time of my life and so did my feet. Within the 5-6 days we were there we walked over 42 miles. YIKES! My feet were feeling it. But they did it! My body was able to do all of that work. It supported me, it led me, and it let me enjoy the world around me. I think so often, we disconnect the fact that our bodies were created for a purpose and that is for us to do all that God has called us to do to it fullest. Yes we live in a fallen world where unfortunately we have disease and sicknesses that plague our wonderful bodies but that doesn’t mean that we give up on stewarding what has been given to us.
That leads me to why. Why do we want to work out? Do we do it to look good, to feel good, to age well? All of those things are nice but they are not sustainable goals. I want to share with you the main reason why I continue to show up for my body. It is simply because I want to do more. I want to make sure that no matter what happens in our world and in my family that I am able to show up and be/do what is needed of me. I understand that my life and body are around for a bigger purpose then to simply serve myself. This is a sustainable goal for me personally because when it was just to look good, man some nights ice cream seemed like a better option then the gym. BUT NOW because I am aware that time is short and who knows what is coming my way, I am pumped and ready to train!
Again there is no condemnation and I want to celebrate with you wherever you are in your journey but I also do want to challenge you to push into the why behind your decision to work out or not work out and ask God what He thinks about it.
Okay now on to the how to’s.
I have been working out consistently for now over 7 years and I have done everything from running daily miles, riding my bike, doing P90x, Julian Michaels, any other person who yelled at me, to yoga, the elliptical, the weight room, zumba, kick boxing, piloxing, a personal trainer and any other class I felt like doing. Okay are you tired of reading all of that? I am pretty tired of writing it all. So I say all of that to show you that in different seasons of life you can just do different things. The trick is to just start somewhere.
Know your season of life
I use to love working out in the mornings and thought that would never change however my schedule changed and now night work outs call to me. Give yourself a break and go when it fits into your schedule. If you are waking up at 5am and then falling asleep at the dinner table, you might need to adjust your work out routine for this season of life. Know that with each season there will be different ways in which you take care of your body by working out.
Don’t let working out become your world.
Gosh I know I am going to step on some toes with this but please let me explain myself. Anything that is done to the extreme, becomes unhealthy. If you are working out so much that you do not have time for God, your family, friends and church then things are a little out of whack for you. Relationships are foundational things in our lives and without them we might end up being a trimmed and toned individual with the appearance of health but lacking true holistic health. Please do not risk what God has given you for the sake of perfection. At the end of the day it is not worth it.
Know your body
I have been diagnosed with lupus and there was a good 5 months where I could not do any physical activity (like get off of the couch) and when I started to get back to normal it took me long to rebuild healthy dynamics for my body. I had to give myself a break, know my limits and actually embrace them. I needed to remind myself why I wanted to work out and celebrate the victories every day. Know your body, what it needs, what you can do, and how you personally can challenge yourself.
Throw that comparison game out the window.
I work out a lot and spend a lot of time with women who are doing the same thing and nothing hurts my heart more then a room filled with comparison. We stare at the mirror then we stare at each other and decide who is worth it. We get our value from being better then this person and lose our confidence from felling not as good as that one. Please throw comparison OUT. Allow yourself to celebrate this one moment you have decided to work out. That you are showing up for your life and stewarding the temple that God has given you. Know that you are beautifully made in the image of God and there is no one like you. Know that the woman (or man) next to you has as much struggles, pain and brokenness as you do and looking “perfect” is not easing any of their pain. This is why working out needs to be connected to a different why in our hearts. The why can’t be about fixing the brokenness in us by how we look because Jesus can only heal that place of brokenness. Jesus is the only who gives us our value, He is the one who shows us our worth by His eternal and true love. Move all the other junk out of the way and allow God to fill those places in you so that you can choose to work out in freedom and not in bondage.
Know you are loved!