Mmmm: How Can I Exercise?
Keeping the commandments is something I have learned I can’t afford NOT to do. EVERY word of instruction from God powerfully blesses my life, but I am thinking of three that I really couldn’t live without:
1. Trying to love God and others;
2. Paying tithing; and
3. Trying to live the Word of Wisdom.
(Paying tithing is easy in that you can’t try to do it: you either are or you aren’t. For people who love to make lists, I’m glad the Lord gave us one commandment we can say we are keeping completely!)
While exercise isn’t described explicitly in the Word of Wisdom, as I’ve searched the scriptures I have come to see that the Lord made our bodies to be used physically. He made our bodies to labor. Nephi, when he was teaching his people to live “after the manner of happiness” taught them to “build buildings, and to work in all manner of wood, and of copper, and of brass, and of steel, and of gold, and of silver…[and to] build a temple…[and to] be industrious, and to labor with their hands.” (2 Nephi 5:15-17). They also farmed, made fabric, built homes, raised flocks, got married and had children, etc. All of those activities really work your body!
It used to be a whole lot easier to work our bodies!
I found it was so hard to figure out how to exercise when I was a young mother. But as someone who used to struggle with depression, I knew I needed to exercise. I just struggled to figure out how.
Then my body and mind got so out of balance from not having sufficient sleep or eating well or exercising, that I got really sick–to the point that I couldn’t care for my family. THAT was a VERY clear lesson. Suddenly, Lane and I made it a priority to exercise and get to bed earlier. We recognized that if I was to be able to care for our family, I had to be healthy. We found a way to make time for me to exercise, and we have never looked back.
My older sister told me once that you are always only one excuse away from not going to church–meaning that it’s so easy to find excuses to not do the things we know are good for us. That’s the same way with exercise. There is so much I need and want to accomplish in a day that sometimes I don’t exercise. But I really miss it when I don’t. (I don’t exercise on Sunday, though–that’s my break day.) Getting out to walk, run, bike, or work in the yard just makes me feel better. I am stronger mentally, emotionally, and physically. I sleep better. I can manage my family better. I feel better about myself.
Living in Utah during the winter can make it more challenging to find ways to exercise. I am really proud of my daughter who is trying to find ways to exercise. She found this app (Sworkit) and used it on her iTouch to get exercise done in the tiny space of her dorm room. We did yoga together using this app and laughed so hard we could hardly hold the poses.
Here’s the great thing about exercising: the more you do it, the easier it gets to do, not because the challenges don’t exist, but because of how you feel and how your desire to do it has increased so much.
Speaking of that, my time for exercising is running out. I’m signing off!
P.S. I wrote about a friend who really inspired me to exercise. Thanks to her, I got running this year, which was something I have really wanted to do. I’m not marathoner–2 miles is about my average, since I’m not fast, and sometimes I only have 20 minutes to run, but it’s a milestone for me. I feel really happy that I am running more or a consistent basis than I ever have before. She showed me by her example that it is possible, small step by small step, to get exercise into our lives. I wrote about her not long ago. I’ll find out where and post it again. I’ll also share ways I’ve found to exercise. I’d LOVE to hear ways you have figured out how to fit exercise in your life! Please share!