Finish the sentence because:
- I run because…
- I swim because…
- I go to the gym because…
- I lift weights because…
- I care about my body because…
Every person’s answer could be different to those questions, but many might also be the same. And although some days our motivation to work out is because we had an extra heavy and indulgent meal the night before or because we have a specific goal in mind, I think what these questions hint at is your motivation underneath it all. In other words, What drives you? What motivates you to live well every day? Because it’s not always swim suit season that gets you out of bed early to hit the gym before work, and we all know how easy it is to blow off a scheduled workout in favor of some extra sleep or a movie at home. What is it that really gets you motivated every day?
If it isn’t something deeper than surface issues, that’s fine too – everyone is at different places. But I wonder how many of us workout or run or eat well because of how it makes us feel, deep down, more than how it makes us look. And while looks is part of it (for me at least! And I think that’s okay!), I’ve been thinking a lot about why it is I do certain things after reading Lindsay’s post earlier this week. I really connected to this post partly because I love to run and partly because it’s so easy to read other people’s blogs or magazines and think that you should be running more, or training for something, or getting faster. A Successful Runner, Lindsay defines what makes a runner truly successful, and I really connected with her thoughts and where she seemed to be at while she wrote the post. I love how she says a successful runner is not defined by her weekly miles but by her weekly effort. Another point I connected with is that a successful runner sees running as as privilege, not an obsession, and fuels her body, not her ego. GREAT thoughts, Lindsay!
This week, the weather has warmed up and I have been running and enjoying it SO much outside! The sun’s been warm, and although the snow melt means lots of half slush, half ice patches and some wet steps along the way, I’ve been having a blast on the (paved) trails near my in-laws’ place. Plus, I’m realizing that we leave for our film tour in only 4 days, and I know getting runs in is going to be lot harder, so I might as well pack in the miles now!
Monday after my last client I couldn’t resist stopping at the South area of the Glenmore Reservoir (where the above photos were taken) and getting 5.5 beautiful, relaxing miles in. Everyone was out enjoying the sun, and even though I was feeling pretty rough from the time change, I went anyways and was glad I did.
A t-shirt, capris, and no long sleeved shirt (well, I ditched it in the bushes to pick it up later about a mile in)?! You’ve got to be kidding me! Gorgeous. And you know I’m running simply because I love it when I run with my hair down, listen to music, AND take my phone with me – I’m normally a gadget-free runner besides my simple $9 sport watch, so this meant I wasn’t worried about time or distance or looks. 😉
So why do I run/workout/try to eat well/work on staying fit? There are several reasons why:
- Running, especially, is my stress-reliever. There’s nothing like a good run (or even just a few steps, sometimes) to clear my head and calm me down emotionally.
- I feel alive when I workout and run. It makes my day feel complete and brings (again) a clarity and freshness to my day/attitude/life.
- I want to honor God by keeping my body healthy so that I can life the life he desires I live – a life for his glory with a body that can engage with people, join in their lives fully, function well, and serve and love people to the best of my ability. If my body was unfit and unhealthy, this would be a lot harder to do.
- I feel God’s pleasure when I run! Eric Liddell (a Scotsman, a Christian, and runner in real life and as portrayed in Chariots of Fire), said it best. It’s a time for me to connect with God, either by praying or just being out in his creation and running silently, just my breaths in and out and the soft sound of my feet padding along the ground.
Tuesdays are usually my long run days, and I was “supposed” to rest yesterday to store up for 12 miles today (for the race I’m not training for; I downloaded a marathon plan from Runner’s World even though I’m not running one for some structure!). Instead, I couldn’t help it and ran out of joy yesterday (the 5.5. miles) and slipped out amidst the busyness and craziness of the workload in the house and got in a breezy 8.28 miles. It felt SO good to get out and cruise, and my legs felt light and airy (unlike yesterday’s heavy feeling in my legs, despite the smiles in my photos!). I am so grateful for movement and never take for granted the fact that my life and work schedule allow me to run mid-day and take a break to do so. I am also grateful for a husband who allows me to go, knowing I’ll likely be a better wife if I get out and run (or stay in and get a workout in – even a quick 20 minutes does wonders for my attitude and feelings!).
So…how would you answer the above questions? What is your motivation for movement? Be it shallow or surface level or deep and driving, share what gets you moving. And although it might change from day to day, what is it that ultimately motivates you to move and live well? Share and join me (and Lindsay!) 🙂 in being grateful for what we have rather than focusing on what we want or do not have.
Live (run, walk, swim, bike, workout, eat) well, and most importantly, BE WELL in heart and mind today!