Thursday, July 01, 2010
I hadnít been to a lunch meeting of the Optimists for over a month. Work kept me out of town. I was looking forward to seeing a lot of folks I had missed in that time. Everyone that greeted me congratulated me on my weight loss and the article they ran on me in our local paper about healthy life styles.
When I sat down to eat three or four people came over, sat down, looked at me earnestly, and said. ďYouíre cursed, you know that donít you?Ē
Yes I did. You see the last three people my gym featured in their articles not only gained all the weight they lost back they added about fifty percent. This is a small city and everyone knows everyone so people notice and BTW: People are cruel. Iím not going to detail some of their remarks but suffice to say I got scared.
See I am within twenty five pounds of my initial goal weight. I been batting around the same five pounds for a month and even though intellectually I know whatís going on I am still getting scared. Iím scared all the weight is hiding in my bedroom closet again and itís going to come creeping back on to me and Iíll be a Spark failure. Then no one will love me and BTW did I tell you Iíd be a failure?
I am really not sure what can make you more miserable, being fat or being thin? So I did some stuff that I know none of you have ever done, like eating below your calorie levels and amping up your cardio to burn a bit more. Anyone here ever get worried about eating and start cutting some really weird corners because you are scared that an extra bite of whole grain bread is going to add fifteen pounds to you? You may not have done it but a dollar to donuts you thought about it.
As a once famous bald headed female exercise leader said ďStop the Insanity.Ē
Suffice to say I was a basket case. It was like running a 5K in quicksand (Wonder if they have a podcast for that?) The harder I tried the more bogged down and anxious I got.
I went to a friendís Spark Page to thank them for something and I actually stopped for a minute and read it. (LOL) They had been someone I had admired for some time and have been successful in fighting the good fight. But I had never read what ďthey stood for.Ē Maybe it was because I had all kinds of time on my hands yesterday or maybe my guardian angel sent me there but as I scrolled down the page I saw this line:
ďEat to fuel my body and my life, not just be below my calorie range.Ē
ďOh wow!!! Someone actually had the same thoughts I did!!!Ē Weird as it may seem, I felt better and I had a lesson reinforced at the same time. Somewhere in the Bible it says ďNothing is new under the sun.Ē That one line made me feel like I wasnít alone. I smiled a bit and actually had a bit of a tear well up in my eye.
ďIím normal,Ē I whispered.
We think and do crazy things sometimes. Our fears get the best of us and once they latch on to us they are like a pit bull, they donít let go. Our fears are what drive us into doing silly stuff that only hurts us in the long run.
You guys may get really bored in hearing all this but I really believe three things create a good foundation for our success.
You are worth more than you can ever imagine.
You deserve only the best and should not only expect it but in most cases demand it.
You really are who you hang around with.
There are so many of you who have motivated and inspired me in so many ways and just like yesterday I am so grateful for it. I choose to hang around with really great folks and if you are reading this, you are one of them.
Time for breakfast.
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
It has always been my favorite quote and it has followed me around all my life. Every time I have hit a rough patch or havenít quite been able to discern something it sits there staring at me.
I had a tooth pulled Monday. Actually it had to be cut out because it had grown into my jaw and needless to say there was pain involved. Most people ask their oral surgeon about post operative care. My questions related to resuming my C25K training, using the elliptical and stationary bike and resuming weight training. Iíll give you the short answer. All I can do is walk until the stitches dissolve which should be by next Monday, hopefully. On the bright side I really didnít need the narcotics they prescribed. By this morning ibuprofen did the trick. But I am digressing here.
All I could do today was sit around. I have a hard time talking. I canít really exercise. Television is, well its television and I wasnít in the mood to read. I began to ask why as in tilting my head upward towards heaven and saying ďWhy?Ē
Be still and know that I am God.
Between me, you and the gate post that really irks me sometimes. I know it is necessary, but it still irks me. Some days I donít want God to be God. I want Him to be what I want Him to be, which is someone who gives me everything I ask for, immediately. The heck with lessons learned and creating foundations and all that rot. Hand it overÖÖÖÖ Now!!!
Be still and know that I am God.
I know why. I just donít like that I know why. God has to slow me down. If He didnít, then only He knows where Iíd be off to with my half baked ideas and plans. He asks me to rest, to relax and mostly He asks me to listen to what He has to say. He gives me all those opportunities to do those things and frankly, most times I pass. I can imagine Him sort of throwing His hands up, rubbing His chine and creating an impact tooth.
He sends me friends with ideas, advice and encouragement and He asks me to take the time to listen. I do, mostly. He asks me to take a deep breath and stand still for a bit so everything can be put into place for me to do my best and be my best.
When I was a kid I hated it when they read the Scripture From the beginning of Matthewsís gospel. It the one with all the ďbegets.Ē Goes from the beginning of time until the birth of Jesus. There are a bunch of names that no one can pronounce and it takes a long time to read. Oh sure there are your heavy hitters in there like Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David and Solomon. But there were also the people no one really knew. People like Azor and Zadok. You donít hear those names bandied around on Sunday morning
Azor and Zadok and a lot of others were people just like me and you; people who peered off into the fog trying to make sense of it all. Sprinkled in there with the kings and prophets were farmers, carpenters and shepherds; every day folks who struggled and wondered and got bored.
Imagine if it were possible for us to go back in time and tell them that they were a link to salvation. Some car wash dude, scraping gum off a fender wall is in the direct line of salvation history. He probably wouldnít believe you. I know I wouldnít.
I think, like all those folks in Matthews Gospel we arenít supposed to make sense of the whole of creation. We are supposed to have faith, to live good lives and to use every tool God gave us. Sometimes it means letting our engine idle while God directs traffic so we have the best and greatest opportunity to serve Him.
Some days, for me it means that even though I have been a ďgood boy,Ē by doing all my exercise, logging all my food and getting enough rest, the scale needle stays stuck, like some divine hand holds it in place. We are asked and called to believe and I think the most important lesson God gives us to believe in ourselves no matter how small or great the odds. To believe we are worth, we deserve it and we are loved. Some days nothing moves forward because we canít see those amazing things
Itís why we have to sit and nurse a pulled muscle or a broken digit. Itís why the very best thing really always isnít because in the Divine mystery there is something so much better out there for us.
Be still and know that I am God.
So I sit here, trying to make sense of it all. A sore jaw isnít much but I have come to learn that it and things like it can be the beginning of something awesome, wonderful and well, LOL, Divine.
Be still and know that I am God.
Monday, June 28, 2010
It took me a few minutes to get it all straight in my head. Iím glad Mass lasts awhile. During the sermon our pastor talked about being on a weeklong youth retreat with one hundred eighth graders. He talked about how they played games and sports and had a lot of fun all day. The evenings he said were reserved for God.
ďThe main thing,Ē he said. ďIs to remember that the main thing is the main thing.Ē Itís really okay if you stop reading and take a few minutes to figure this out. I know it took me a few. Donít worry, this is not going to be a continuation of his sermon, LOL, Iím not that eloquent.
I thought about it and after a bit I thought how it applied to what we are about here at Spark. I can only speak for me, but my purpose in being here is to be healthier tomorrow than I am today. In order to do that I need the support of everyone who is willing to give it to me. Being healthier means I have a lot of choices I can make when it comes to what food goes in my mouth, the exercise I do and the teams and people here I associate with.
Last week while I was out doing my C25K training I jogged past a church that had a sign out front; on the sign was a saying that caught my eye:
ďIt wasnít the apple on the tree that caused the problem; it was the pair beneath the tree.Ē
Choices, LOL, from the beginning of time it has always been about choices. I canít say Iíve always made the best choices in my life. I was morbidly obese at one point in time. I am slowly cycling through obese on my way to simply being overweight. Thatís a choice I made.
I show up here every day on a regular basis and if I do nothing else I chart my food and exercise. At the end of some days I smile and at the end of other days I frown. The main thing is I am here. Itís my choice. I am challenged by many of you to grow in ways I never would have thought about even six months ago. It has opened a whole new world for me.
A healthier me is going to be a me who will be able to do everything he wants to and more importantly everything he is supposed to do. Being worth it and deserving it come with a price. It means that since I know what is expected of me, and how I should live, I have an obligation to pass that on to other people. Some days that can be a difficult choice. Some days I donít feel all ďSparkified.Ē Some days I feel like sitting in a corner and being smug and content. Some weeks if I gain weight I want to be left alone because it is so much easier to ignore the choices I made during the week. Or Maybe I was too tired to hit the gym one day. I donít always want to be reminded of that. Iíd rather sit here and let you think I am the guy who always makes the right choices. I always donít.
The good news is that since I have been here I see the meter trending more and more towards making those right choices on a regular basis. It is easy to forget what the main thing is all about. Itís about you being everything you were meant to be and that comes by choosing wisely.
The main thing has nothing to do with being perfect or being better than anyone else. It means knowing that when you have those glorious days when everything comes together for you that one day you will be able to share that vision with someone who, no matter how hard they are trying, just canít seem to make any progress. It means you will encourage and cajole and maybe sometimes even challenge someone else to be healthy.
ďThe main thing to remember is that main thing is the main thing.Ē If I donít, if I make all the wrong choices for me, and I never get the opportunity to go from disciple, one who learns, to apostle, one who teaches. The main thing is my health and my gratefulness to God for allowing me to find that health.
I am worth it, I do deserve it but really seeing and believing it in my life comes down to the choices I make. Thatís the main thing.
I made a choice to be your friend and you made a choice to be mine.
Thatís a pretty good start donít you think?
Friday, June 25, 2010
Availible on You Tube @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-PCGlRe0c8o
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