“Who has God made to me to be and what am I supposed to be doing?”
I’ve been asking this question of myself often over the last several months. The answers that I come up with are what we are calling Big Rocks. Read the original post in this series to understand the importance of the Big Rocks going first into your jar.
My Big Rock #3 is my health. I have begun to realize that my body is not getting any younger. And with that age comes, hopefully, wisdom.
I was diagnosed with high blood pressure at the age of 28 and given medication. I had chronic headaches that debilitated me. I have a family history of high cholesterol. I am, by nature, a night owl and was not getting enough sleep.
I realized that if I want to serve well, I neded to make some changes. Here are action steps I have implemented:
Exercise: I strive to work-out 4 days each week; Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. My work-out of choice: Wii Fit! I spend about 15 minutes doing yoga to stretch my muscles and help with my flexibility and balance. I then spend another 15 minutes doing strength training on the Wii Fit. And finally I spend another 15 minutes doing aerobic exercises.
Eating: I have earnestly attempted to cut out excess sugar from my diet. Now, I still have a cookie or cupcake from time to time, but I don’t have 2 or 3 or 4. Also, I have stopped over-eating. As I have practiced self-control in this area, I have been shocked to realize how badly I overate in the past. It feels good to stop eating when you’re full.
Combining these two practices have helped me to lose 8 pounds in the last month. Not a ton…but a good, healthy pace to lose weight. (Plus, I am treating my wife to a Caribbean cruise to celebrate our 10th anniversary this winter…and I don’t want to be the fat guy with no shirt on by the pool!)
Sleeping: A few weeks ago, I decided to simply just go to bed whenever Keri went to bed. I am, as I mentioned, a night-owl by nature. She is not. She’s a go-to-bed-about-10pm-no-matter-what kind of person. I told her one night that I would just go to bed with her each night, no questions asked. I would stop whatever I was doing and sleep.
After a few nights, I noticed something amazing: I felt better. And I woke up before my alarm clock ready to start my day. No more hitting the snooze button and rolling out of bed just in time to take my daughter to school. Nope! I could wake up early, workout, take a shower and then take her to school. Amazing!
Less Caffeine: This may sound completely insane to most of you, but I gave caffeinated coffee up completely a little over a year ago. I still drink lots of coffee, but it’s ALL decaf. Every once in awhile I will have a Diet Coke, but my overall in-take of caffeine has gone from “way-too-much” to “hardly-any” and my body feels better for it.
Caffeine is America’s legal drug. Just one thought: if you get a headache whenever you don’t get your cup of joe or Mountain Dew, then you have a problem! Don’t be a slave.
All of these efforts, as well as a few others, have helped my body feel better. Losing weight. Not so tired. Fewer headaches. More energy. All good things that make me a better follower of Christ, a better husband, a better father, a better minister, and a better person.