letting myself off the hook; again…

I can’t do it, and I can’t handle the emotions I’ll feel when I fail! Sounds pathetic, but it is what it is. As I realize my own limitations, I began to accept my humanity and extend grace to myself. I am all worried about being able to walk up Mt. Scott tomorrow morning with a group of friends who all workout with the same trainer. Yes, I know it is meant to be fun, but it has caused me great angst.

It is a 3 mile hike up the road with an 8% grade in places. My trainer RAN up it on Sunday in less than 40 minutes. (she is amazing) She had a great idea that we could all walk up it tomorrow instead of our normal Friday workout. Great idea for everyone except for me… let’s see… anyone else spent their entire life fat? No. Anyone else in the group failed to walk 3 miles even just on flat ground? No. Anyone in the group ever run a 5K or a marathon? Yes, everyone except me. So, instead of feeling all the negative energy of failure, I choose to extend grace and stay home. I am just not ready to be put in that position again. I have spent the greater part of my life as someone who participates from the “outside”. Oh, I’m there at all the events; but I’m off to the side watching everyone else as they achieve, participate, enjoy… So tomorrow when they are all up on top of the mountain celebrating and taking their pictures to post on facebook, I’ll be here at home; cleaning my house, caring for my family, exercising with my husband, and processing through my emotions. Instead of gasping for breath, I’ll be breathing in grace and exhaling peace.

ADDENDUM: My husband and I went out to the refuge around 10am and walked halfway up the mountain. 1 and 1/2 miles and then walked back down. I can no longer say that I haven’t ever walked 3 miles! I have a plan to add to my hike, we mapped out 2 miles for next time. I am so thankful for friends who understand, a husband who loves me for who I am, and a God who gives just enough grace for each moment! 6 months ago I wouldn’t have ever been able to do what I did today. Thanks Mandy for training me, encouraging me and believing in me. Who knows what I’ll be able to do 6 months from now!

it all started with reality TV…

A few months ago I was reading a status update of a friend on facebook and it basically changed my life. Wow, a status update can do that? Let me explain. I have this wonderful friend named Stephanie who was my roommate at ORU. We both were voice majors, we both loved Sandi Patti, we both ended up getting married on the same day, and we both were in fat class. That’s what we called it back then. If you had a certain body mass index, then you had to enroll in extra PE classes to help you get your weight under control. (I told you I have been on a diet my entire life) Well, back to facebook… Steph married a guy name Jeff and it was actually his status that changed the course of my life. Jeff and Steph live in California with their 2 lovely daughters and Jeff works in the TV and movie industry. Jeff and his business partner are award winning composers. They have a company named Ah2, and they write for movies and TV shows: The Apprentice, Martha Stewart, Biggest Loser, and more. One day Jeff mentioned that he was in the studio working on the music for Biggest Loser, just like I’d say I’m in the kitchen working on making oatmeal…no big deal. I thought, “hey, I haven’t ever watched that show. It would be fun to watch an episode and listen to his music.” Thankfully there was a new episode on hulu since we no longer have TV in our house. I began to watch and found myself glued to the computer screen. These extremely overweight people were accomplishing amazing things. When the intensity of the moment was too much for them to handle, the music would swell as a contestant burst into tears. I found myself moved by the moment and the music. I was hooked. Over the next few weeks I began to wonder if I could accomplish the same thing. I thought about Stephanie, she certainly doesn’t look like anyone who ever donned the door of a fat class. She has worked hard and made fitness and a healthy lifestyle a priority. She talks about the treadmill and eating burgers without the bun, and baking cookies but not eating any…she is quite a gal! Jeff is really amazing too. He has had great success as a composer but it hasn’t come without hard work and determination. I remember Jeff hating group piano class at ORU. He was a composition major and had to take group piano because he wasn’t advanced enough in piano for private lessons. Someone of lesser character would have given up, but I am sure Jeff heard the music in his head and was determined to follow the course that would allow him to share it with the world. All of these feelings began to stir something inside of me. The people on The Biggest Loser sharing their struggles and finding success, Jeff and Steph being so focused and faithful to their calling. Could I do the same? Could I envision a life of health and fitness for me? I started doing simple exercise routines while I watched Biggest Loser on hulu. I started eating healthier. I started to lose weight. 14 pounds in 2 months, not a record, but a beginning. My husband encouraged me to hire a trainer. What? I did hire a trainer 4 weeks ago and boy, is my outlook on fitness different now. My trainer is too great to just mention at the end of this post; she will have one all of her own. For now I just want to encourage you to find your motivation wherever you can…a friend, a family member, a trainer, or maybe even reality TV!

Just for the record, Jeff and Steph don’t know any of this yet. I am posting it on her facebook for them to see. Thanks friend for inspiring me and setting such an awesome example. I am blessed to have you in my life!