I feel like I have to type really fast, because I have so much to say. As if the speed of my typing will somehow affect the speed of your reading. I also feel like I have to bring you up to date on all details of my life before I move forward with this post. Details like whether or not we found a place to sleep on vacation, or how my husband performed at his triathlon, or how on every single vacation this summer, I lost the function of an essential electronic device.
Yes….I feel the need to tell you about every single one of those things.But I won’t. Not today. And you should be thanking me for that. I realize you have better things to do today than read about how my husband dropped the digital camera (the one with all of the triathlon and vacation pictures) into the murky river and how it sunk to the bottom where it sat for four hours and then how he dove down into the river under the docked boats in zero-visibility water to retrieve the camera and how even the guy at the boat rental place was taking pictures of my husband diving under the boats looking for the camera because it was so crazy, and how he actually FOUND the camera and how we are praying the memory card is still able to spit out our priceless pictures.
No, I won’t tell you about that.
Instead I’ll focus on fitness. It’s Fitness Friday, after all, so it’s entirely fitting to discuss this aspect of where I am spiritually today. See, today is the day I begin the “Don’t Stop ‘til I Reach My Goal Fitness Initiative.” Do you like that? “Fitness Initiative?” I just made that up, right now during my rapid typing.
In other words, I’m physically, mentally and spiritually prepared to address this excess weight…which, by the way, is a grand total of 18.8 pounds, thanks in part to vacation/birthday eating. Yes, I celebrated a birthday while on vacation. A double calorie threat. An excuse to eat cake and ice cream almost every night, on top of the already calorie-dense-albeit-amazing food choices. I don’t regret it…just letting you know, Fitness Friday Girl enjoyed her Birthday Vacation Extravaganza. And she brought back some excess pounds as souvenirs. I’d post a picture, but, you know…the camera…
So, other than fast typing and terrible run-on sentences, here is how I’ve prepared for my Fitness Initiative:
Physically: I’ve been toying in my head with the possibility of starting an official program (i.e. Body for Life, P90X, Making the Cut, etc). Those programs have worked well in the past. But every time I considered one of them, I felt a little “yuk” inside, like I wasn’t on the right track, ya know? So, last night, I browsed the “Health and Fitness” aisle at Books-a-Million, looking for some inspiration and a new program to follow. And what I encountered at Books-a-million was Diets-a-Million. Endless ideas/philosophies/ approaches to weight-loss.
Let’s see…I could cut out sugar, gluten, salt or meat. I could eat all raw foods. I could eat only super foods. I could eat for my blood type. I could eat like French Women. I could Think Myself Thin. I could become a Skinny B**ch. (sorry). I could do Atkins or Zone or Weight Watchers or Biggest Loser. Even though I am familiar, at least in part, with most of these approaches, I didn’t find inspiration. Instead, I felt overwhelmed and a bit anxious. Know what I mean?
Then I got a hold of myself. “Don’t freak out, Sandy.” I closed my eyes and breathed a quick prayer: “God, just show me what I should do. You created my body. You know what I need. Just guide me.” And immediately, I felt peace. I realized, I already know what to do. God’s been teaching me and guiding me for years about health and fitness. Nothing’s changed. Nothing’s new. With the wisdom God has already bestowed (partially through some of the very books on those shelves), and the daily guidance of His Holy Spirit, I am able to create my own fitness plan. So, I left Books-a-Million with nary a book, but with tons of inspiration. Cool.
I’ll tell you all about my program, but not here and not now. You can follow my journey and read about my plan on my new fitness blog,to be launched NEXT WEEK!!
How’s that for a shameless plug? More to come on that. I’ll post the link when it’s all ready and we’ll have a little Fitness Shin-Dig over there, K? It may or may not be Monday. Maybe Friday. I’ll let you know.
Mentally: Fitness is mental. It takes motivation and focus to change habits and stay consistent for the long haul. For me, this is a unique challenge, because I already lead a very healthy lifestyle. I love healthy food. I love working out. I love being fit and healthy. But something strange happens to the psyche when you’re doing all the right things and the pounds keep creeping up. It’s discouraging. De-motivating. Depressing. Until recently, I never worried about an occasional calorie splurge or a day missed of exercise, because I knew the rest of the week I was eating well and moving often. But since my metabolism went into hibernation last year, a calorie splurge and a day missed of exercise equals at least one brand new pound of fat. No lie. It’s made me afraid to eat anything. Or sometimes it makes me feel like eating everything. I’ve gained 18.8 pounds, eating very healthy most of the time and working out 5 to 6 days a week. That’s a recipe for “Why Bother?”
Needless to say, I’ve had to spend a lot of time mentally preparing to lose this weight. Like MONTHS. My body isn’t responding the way it did a year ago. I don’t even know how it will respond to my new Fitness Initiative. But after a lot of thinking and considering and pondering… I’m mentally prepared and focused to endure whatever I must endure to reach my goals.
Spiritually: I cannot separate the spiritual from the mental and the physical. They are so intertwined in me, I often cannot tell one from the other. What I eat and what I think affects me spiritually. Where I am spiritually affects what I eat and what I think. In my prayer time, I’ve had to dig deeply and identify my true motivation for losing this weight (Pride? Health? Example to my children? Vanity?) I’ve had to determine the eternal value, if any, in choosing to focus on this for the next several months. I’ve had to strip myself of All-Things-Sandy and allow God to do whatever He wants to do in me or through me, whether I lose the weight or not. In the deepest places of my heart, I’ve had to decide I’d be content in Christ, no matter what. I’m going to tell you more about all of that in the up-coming weeks on the amazing adventures of fitness friday girl. Another shameless, albeit, smaller plug.
So, that’s it. That’s what God is saying to me. I’d love to hear what He’s been saying to you! Will you tell me about it? And type fast, cuz I’ve got unpacking and laundry to do.