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Getting in better physical condition is simple. It’s just not easy.
I’m not a personal fitness trainer and I’m not a dietitian, but I’ve learned a couple of simple things along the way, thanks to great mentors like Dr. John Eckrich, our Founder, and my wife, Carol, R.N. I’ve read books and articles, but mostly I’ve tried to put some simple ideas into practice. Simple works best for me.
I like to say that there are twelve key words to getting started on a diet and exercise program. The first eight are the simple part. “Walk like you’re late” and “I don’t eat that.”
The last four words are intended to give you help with the “not easy” part of getting more fit. “Get an accountability partner.” That’s the Power of WE.
“Walk like your late” is short for “Get out there and take a walk every day. If you can only walk a few minutes without getting out of breath, start there. Work your way up to 10 then 20 and then 30 minutes. When you can, step up the pace. Walk like your late for 30 minutes. That’s a great daily exercise routine that delivers almost as much benefit as a 30 minute run with less wear and tear.”
The hard part is not the “take a walk every day.” The hard part is the “Get out there” part. That’s where the Power of WE comes in.
Get an accountability partner.
Here’s the way it works. Ask a friend who cares about you if she will ask you about once a week, “Did you take your three/four/five walks this week?” Remind her that you don’t need a sermon. You don’t need a lecture. You just need to know that she’s going to ask.
That way, when you’re lacking the self-control to strap on the shoes and head for the mall or the park, you’ll remember, “Edna is going to ask me again when I see her Sunday. It feels worse to tell her, ‘No, I didn’t’ than it does to get off the couch and go, so I’ll just go and then I can tell her ‘Yes!’ when I see her.”
Carol had an walking partner in Saginaw. Debbie came over every morning at 6:00 am for a two mile walk. One Michigan winter they walked every day, no matter how cold, right through the winter until a 50 degree morning in March. “What are you doing back here?” I asked. “You just left five minutes ago!” The snow was melting and rushing in a river of slush down the street. No walk on the warmest day in months!
“I don’t eat that” works the same way. It’s at the heart of Weight Watchers and Over Eaters Anonymous. Someone’s going to ask if I ate that one item I’m trying to take out of my diet. A partner brings the Power of WE into a difficult struggle. It really works.
We’re the people of God and we’re in this together. Have you got an accountability partner? I’d love to hear about how it’s working for you!
Thanks for reading!
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