So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. All who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you will be as nothing and perish.Isaiah 41:10
I am facing a couple of my biggest fears next week. First, I will be having one of the most difficult, uncomfortable conversations that I’ve ever had in my life. Second, a day later, I will be getting up in front of a large group of people and speaking into a microphone and putting myself out there to describe the course I want to teach later in the month. Fear rises up.
When I read verses like Isaiah 41:10, I realize that my fears are nothing like the fear spoken of in the verse. But they feel real, nonetheless. My body reacts as though my life were in danger. Sweaty palms, heart pounding, wanting to run, fear.
I realized that being afraid now, before those events happen, is futile. I’m actually fearing the fear that will come on those particular days. There is absolutely no benefit to fearing those events in the days leading up to it. And what if it was OK to feel it on those days? What is the worst thing about just feeling it? And moving forward anyway. That’s courage. I can acknowledge that I will be afraid. And I can decide that today, I won’t be afraid.
It all starts with recognizing what my brain is doing. Then I can decide to think differently.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.Philippians 4:8
Lately I have been trying to find the right exercise so that I could meet my goals. Up until recently I hadn’t been working out regularly. I know that my weight loss is more dependent on my nutrition than my exercise. But I also recognize that exercise is an important part of overall health. Last summer/fall I did a good job with increasing my number of steps walked per day. That fell off when the rainy season started. By the time this spring came around I knew I wanted to do more. I’m ready to start feeling stronger. To start adding flexibility to my routine. To build some endurance to be able to participate more actively with my family.
To find the right exercise for me I looked at the following things. You can ask yourself the same questions to find your exercise fit.
I think the best thing I’ve done to answer these question has been to experiment. I have continued to see what other people enjoy and to try new things. Part of the equation for me was doing yoga at home. I started by doing it with a 30 day program on YouTube called 30 Days of Yoga with Adriene. She has a great style of teaching and she starts with the basics and builds up from there. It started me on the journey of getting stronger and more flexible while also improving my core. I’m pretty terrible at it, but I see results as I stick with it.
For the cardio portion I bought a Peloton bike. I am totally addicted to it. It’s not only the exercise itself, but it’s the social aspect of the bike and the membership. There are online classes that you can take either live or on demand that help push you farther than you would ever do on your own in the gym. They have a really active and supportive online community. I have done far more exercise in the past month than I have any other time since my time in the Marine Corps. And I’ve finally learned what those elusive exercise endorphins feel like!
Another bonus with Peloton is that the app has other types of workouts as well. So I can do live yoga classes, strength training, power walking, and more with the same membership. And my profile page tracks all my workouts and exercise streaks. For me it has changed my outlook on the likelihood that I will be a fit person one day. It’s inevitable!
Now it’s time to find the right exercise for you and your lifestyle.
What are your goals?
What do you enjoy?
What is sustainable for you?
How will you track your progress?
Take some time to answer these questions and then start experimenting. Let me know if you need help to figure it out. Let’s get fit!