Posts Tagged ‘training’

exercise for now and later

October 20, 2011

I came across this verse today as I was reading my Bible. It arrested my attention and reminded me to keep my focus and my priority.

Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is valuable in every way, because it promises life both for the present and for the future.  (Good News Translation)

I’ve been working out at Fitness Together for about 22 months. I’ve seen some very encouraging changes in my body and my attitude! I feel stronger, healthier, enjoy better balance and stamina and am so very glad to be able to work out there twice a week!

Monday I went in to my workout appointment with Ashley armed with my eating/exercise journal and a new resolve. I told her I’ve got to get out of this slump and that I wanted to face the ‘Big 50’ next month with 10 fewer pounds! She said it’s possible but that I’ve gotta be willing to pay the price. (translation – I’ve gotta get my fat butt in there more often to do my cardio – more cardio – longer, more strenuous cardio!)

Even as I do pay that price, I’m still an almost 50 year-old middle-aged woman fighting the calendar and gravity! Working out won’t make me look like a 29 year-old fashionista model! (Dang!)  It will help me be a healthy, fit 50-year-old!  Ha!

It’s so typical to work hard at trying to get/stay fit but let’s face it, each day gravity gains more ground! We continue to fight fat, eat right, exercise, get enough sleep, drink enough water and yet natural law has the upper hand at least for now!

That’s where this verse comes in. Physical exercise is helping me live physically. But one day this body will give up/check out/sign off.  But my spirit is eternal. It will get a new, way better spiritual body to live in one day. I need to continue doing my spiritual exercises daily because it not only will strengthen me for living day-to-day right now, but it is also preparing me for my future forever-life! My spirit doesn’t have to fight gravity or age! It becomes stronger, more agile and beautiful and more alive the more I nurture and train it!

So, how do I exercise my spirit?

For starters, I spend a little time every morning reading my Bible. God’s Word. The words of God. Spoken to people and written down. Wow. I can know some of the thoughts of God! They’re here for me to read! I just have to open the book and read them and let them sink into my mind and heart. As I do that every day, it impacts my life – my thoughts, my actions, my relationships, etc.

Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another—showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way. Through the Word we are put together and shaped up for the tasks God has for us.  (2 Timothy 3:16-17 The Message Bible)

Another way I exercise my spirit is to pray. This, I have to admit is harder for me than reading. So, this is why I persevere, because I know it’s important. It is my lifeline to God. Talking to Him is vital. I mean, how can you grow a friendship with someone you never talk to? So, I mostly write my conversations with him. (At least my end of them, ha!) Although sometimes I just talk out loud. In my kitchen or in the car. I tell him what grabs my attention from what I’ve read in the Bible and how I want it to change me. I tell him about the concerns I have for my family and friends and myself. I ask him for help, for wisdom. I tell him how amazing I think he is. I marvel at the creation he designed. I tell him or I gasp or gawk! Like the time a huge hawk flew just above me. Or when there’s a gorgeous sunrise or sunset. I don’t use religious language – Thees and Thous. I just talk and write and marvel.

Another way I exercise my spirit is to go to church. It’s way too easy to sleep in! Waaaaaaaaaaaay too easy! Excuses abound – I don’t even have to go looking for them. They are ready and waiting! (Kinda like all those excuses to keep me from working out!)

Going to church isn’t some way of making myself feel better about myself. I don’t go to ease my conscience. Going there puts me in contact with other people who are in the same boat as me so to speak. We’re all on a spiritual journey. We’re all wanting to know God and grow spiritually. None of us are perfect, nor are we pretending to be. We are learning to leave our pretenses at the door.

Being at church encourages me. It lightens my load. I leave refreshed, and challenged and armed with knowledge to help me make changes in my life and trust God more.

So, there’s my beginning description of what it means to exercise my spirit. I hope it encourages you to exercise yours.

Here’s a bonus tip, no charge! Sometimes I “multi-task” and listen to worship music as I run/walk. I talk to God as I pant my way along the treadmill or trail. I could even start memorizing scripture as I run! But I always find something to shake my head at and tell God how astoundingly amazing he is!

Happy exercising to you – physically and spiritually!

expand your limits

March 8, 2011

Today I had my third “test” at Fitness Together. Pretty painless if you don’t count stepping on the scale and getting calipered to see my fat percentage!

The first time I had these things done was at the very beginning to get a ‘base line’ so it would be easy to track my improvement. I was mortified! The second time I wasn’t horrified because I knew I’d made significant strides. Well, this time I wasn’t mortified or horrified, but I wasn’t exactly ecstatic. I felt disappointment when I stepped on the scale and when he pulled out those calipers, felt fear of finding out the fat facts!

But before all that, Nick and I discussed how things have been going and I shared with him I feel like I’ve kind of stalled. I fessed up about how I’ve been buying my favorite (one of many) Easter treats, the candy coated malted milk eggs! I ‘only eat a serving’ but then maybe another one later in the day! It’s fine and dandy to eat candy, if you aren’t trying to lose weight! Duh! My calories need to count for nutrition and satiety. If my stomach doesn’t fill up, I’ll eat more, and that’s what’s been happening! I’ve been hungry hungry! Did I mention I’ve been hungry?!

So, Nick helped me decide on a few goals. It’s easy to flounder around aimlessly if you don’t keep goals in front of your face constantly. (When Nick pulled out my goals from before Thanksgiving, I’d forgotten I had made any! Shoot!) Goals are vital to success, I’m learning! If I don’t have any, (or forget I do) I show up, do the work, but don’t make time for a cardio session. I eat on the run and forget to keep track. I fudge a little here and there. Life is full, time slips by and whatdya know, oops, another week has gone by and very little progress was made. (This is too expensive a commitment to behave in such a nonchalant way!)

I told Nick it’s time to get tough with me. He’s such a good sport! That’s why I pay him the big bucks! He helps me show up, do the work, and keeps me accountable! He reminds me to write the times on the calendar in advance so that I’ve planned it in my day and it has a better chance of actually happening! (Another duh!)

Here’s where we landed. I will continue to do my two training sessions a week. But I will schedule them before 9 am. Then, I will come in to do my cardio three times a week and will come in by 7 am. (The early time is to help me not wishy-wash my way out of making it happen. I don’t like to get sweaty! Once I’m cleaned up for the day, I certainly don’t want to sweat because I’ll have to get all cleaned up again! So I’ll go in early so I won’t have an excuse to escape a workout!)

I also made a commitment to do a complete job of filling in my food chart every day instead of petering out after lunch and winging it the rest of the day/night.

And, here’s my reward! Every week that I do the work, (taking my baby steps toward grown up athletic discipline!) I get to eat 4 of those amazing chocolate eggs! 4! I told Nick a serving is 5 eggs. He said, “I know, you told me.” I was like, well then, why not 5? He asked me if I always eat an entire serving of everything, for instance, a meal at a restaurant. I said of course I didn’t. Well then, point made! Why do I need to eat 5 when 4 will do?

I want to lose another 20 pounds by the end of July. It’s possible, if I follow the plan and stick to it! So there are my goals: showing up early to do 2 training sessions, 3 additional cardio sessions, keeping a complete and accurate food chart, and then I’ll see the changes I long for.

I read recently in a book, “Don’t let anything you can change limit your life.” This is powerful. As I look back over the years of feeling inferior because of many things, but mostly my appearance due to weight issues, I realize that I allowed something that I could change limit my activities and relationships! No more! I’m on the road to health and that includes emotional and spiritual health as well as physical well-being. They are all interwoven. There’s no separating them.

Please allow me to encourage you to take those words to heart and make some decisions to change what you can change so that you don’t limit your living!

It just so happens that this weekend, March 12th, there is a Wellness Seminar at Lifegate Church from 9-4:30. There will be some excellent speakers, and topics that should interest you. Also, there will be professionals there to screen your blood pressure, spine and vision, all for free! Check out the link and try to come. The sessions I’m particularly interested in are: Creating a Personalized Fitness Plan (taught by real trainers), Overcoming Obstacles to Exercise (taught by Sara Garcia, a Wellness Advocate and motivational speaker), and The ABC’s of Managing Stress (taught by a Dr. of Psychology)! There are many more topics, all taught by professionals with plenty of experience. So, come check it out! It’s free!

Come and take your first step at making a change to expand your limits! See you there!

week five

February 9, 2010

Well, for anyone who’s following my progress as I pursue a healthier life, I’ve now entered my fifth week of being accountable to a personal trainer! Woo – hoo!  I’m not sure I’ve consistently exercised for four weeks ever in my life, except in college where it was required to graduate! So, that being the case, this is cause for great rejoicing! (Okay, so that was a little exaggerated, but it’s been 10 years since being this consistent. It feels great!)

Yesterday I went in and Ashley worked me over good! She’s always very encouraging, and even though I may feel like a mammoth middle-aged matron, she never makes me feel that way! She’s always saying things like, “Great job! Awesome! Way to go!” I can tell she’s genuinely meaning it, too.

I was doing my cardio (gotta love the lingo!) on the treadmill afterward (like a good athlete-in-training) and feeling pretty proud of myself that I was reaping the benefits from walking regularly while on vacation as I wasn’t huffing and puffing nearly as much as before! I was feeling stronger and was even able to run a few minutes at a time, a couple of times which may not seem like a big deal, but I’m not ashamed to admit my small beginnings! (I’m fairly confident I wouldn’t have had the same success on the eliptical machine, that thing’s killer! But that day will come!I will master it!)

While I was panting in rhythm to my steps, Nick, the boss/trainer came over to chat. It’s a little trick he does to see how hard I’m working! Am I talking with ease? Not working hard enough. Am I gasping for air and unable to utter a word? Probably working it just a wee bit too much! I was in that happy middle.

Nick asked about my vacation, and complimented me on my Baja tan, then got down to business in a friendly sort of way. (He’s supposed to – that’s why I’m going to him!)  How did I do with my cardio while I was away? (great!) Did I do any weights? (oops, nope) How ’bout the eating? Did I stay pretty well within the 3 small meals and 2 snacks per day routine? I happily replied, “I did!” (pant, pant)

As I trotted along  (plodding actually, but in my heart I was trotting!) I told Nick that I’ve never been so pleased with working out! Ever! I actually enjoy it! Look forward to it! It’s a marvel! It’s nearly a miracle!

So, these next few weeks I’m trusting I’ll be seeing some fruit from my workout labor. I’m definitely feeling results! I’ve got more energy and I’m sleeping better. I’ve already cinched my belt in a notch and my clothes aren’t so tight. (I’m not looking at a scale; it’s not about weight. It’s about being healthy and getting more fit, remember?) All these are encouraging things. Little strides are worth celebrating!

I’ve found that calorieking.com is a very helpful site to keep me informed about food choices. Check it out! And if you’re interested in meeting with Nick at Fitness Together, here’s his information. Just tell him Kris sent you!       402-932-5346        nickryan@fitnesstogether.com           www.ftomaha.com