For the longest time, my routine has included at least three sets of exercise and it grew organically from ten minutes to sixty minutes over time. I would be super proud when I did more that forty five minutes and would dance around or pat myself on the back until I hit a plateau. I found that I did exercises but nothing changed in fact I was beginning to frustrated.
One day I stepped on a stone and once again I couldn’t do a certain set of exercises. I had to find a way to keep working out so I looked and found an app that allowed me to focus on my abs. This made sense because I would keep the weight of jumping off my foot and I had realised that my core was weak and hence certain exercises were causing me back pain. I shifted intensity, duration and focus.
For eighteen days only I did one set of abdominal exercises. During that time my workload more than doubled and I spent more than three times the usual time travelling and working that I would be too tired to do much at the end of the day and the morning workout time had become impossible to do. I couldn’t even believe it. I would even fall asleep on the floor at the end of the work out as I did my last stretches. Once or twice I could not get halfway of my workout done.
To mitigate quitting, I dialled back on the exercise routines and remained with the seven minute abdominal exercise and stretches…a maximum of seventeen minutes. Initially I thought I was failing but I decided to do it because I wanted to work out every day no matter how little or how hard it got. On day nineteen, the routine had three sets of exercise I used to avoid because they were hard and I just couldn’t find it in me to try them. These exercises were the push up with a rotation, walking planks and burpees.
I could hear coach in my head saying, “Why do you decide not to do these exercise.”
“Can’t you see they are hard?”
‘Haven’t you done hard things before?”
“I have but these are too hard.”
“I don’t know…I just think they are hard.”
He just looks at me in utter disbelief. There is a look he gets when he cannot believe I am doing something that is indeed foolish or refusing to do something that is good for me. It is blank look that speaks…sounds like an oxymoron but yeah!!
Please note, I didn’t actually have the conversation with him; my mind was running scenarios of what our conversation would be like and that was enough for me to really ask God about the way forward.
In that moment I knew I had to do these exercises however hard they were because I have become stronger and I must be able to do more. So I did the exercises and increased my plank routine to sixty seconds each in one sitting. Oh the pressure! My heart rate was through the roof, there was pain in the abdomen and shaking of the muscles but I knew it was good for me so I did it again and I came back to the place of… ‘just push through.’
As I sit at my desk late at night on a break from client work, I realised that I was tired and just wanted to curl up and sleep but the looming deadline wouldn’t allow it. I asked for help and then I remember part of the word given to me on my birthday this week…
…He is a covenant keeping God and His word will not go back to Him until it has accomplished that which He sent it to fulfil in and through you.
He is the author of this journey and has so far helped me get within 1.8kg of my target weight. More than that, He says… ‘take my yoke upon you for my burden is easy and my yoke is light.’ This means I can trust Him, I can count on Him, and I can understand that it is well with me…so I rest. I rest from the toil, I rest from the hardship, I rest from aimless running and wait for Him to lead and guide into the next step and success.
I trust Him to lead me in the ways everlasting.