HEalthy living



Posted by Mary Jo Hudson on OP10er @ 10:50 PM



You probably think I don’t know how to spell that word, don’t you?  Actually, it’s the brand name of our treadmill.  And, the treadmill taught me a valuable spiritual lesson last week.


I like to think of myself as purposeful.  By that, I mean, I like to have a purpose for everything I do.  My knitting serves a purpose:  to give a gift or make a useful tool for our home.  Three seasons of the year, my yard and garden give me great purpose. Not only do they provide beauty for my eyes; rest for my soul; food for our table; spiritual insight as I am alone and pondering; and exercise for my body.


But the winter months fail to create much exercise.  There is snow scooping but my husband hates to have me scoop snow.  I actually enjoy it.  He despises it but he feels like less of a man if he lets his wife do the lifting.  So, I let him use his snow blower and leaf blower to accomplish the task and I watch. Honestly, reading and knitting, and even housework have not offered me much physical exercise during the non-gardening months of the year.


We have had a treadmill for a decade or more and I’ve resolved to use it and failed in the long term application of my resolve.  I do well for a few days or even a few weeks and then fall out of the routine.  This year, I’m trying to do better.  I try 5-6 times a week to walk and I’m happy if I can get 3-4 sessions completed.  I’m also working on my ‘just do it’ attitude because it is very easy for me to find other things to do first.  I don’t love it.


I dug out some ancient CASSETTE praise tapes made for walking and found my little pocket sized cassette player to keep me stepping.  Intent on making the most of this 30 minute event,

I moved the speed up and increased the incline.  I did fine for awhile and then I decided to take my pulse.  This requires holding a special handle.  I found that it was easier to walk when I was holding on to something.  


Not only was it easier to trot along, I could close my eyes and keep up.  I focused on the music which was really an opportunity for me to praise the Lord right along with the lyrics.   When I opened my eyes, the first thing I saw was that label: Sole.  And, it occurred to me that my soul is in better shape when I focus on two things:  praising the Lord and holding on to Him.  


You see, I tried closing my eyes and walking and I stumbled because I wasn’t hanging on to a handle or the pulse bar.  The treadmill must be 24-30 inches wide.  It isn’t a narrow path, but when I wasn’t watching some distant point while I was stepping or holding on to the side rail, it was easy to lose my balance and fail to stay upright.  But, I could close my eyes and hang on to the side rails and the pulse bar and listen to that music and focus on the One who has me in His hand.


Lest you think I was just walking on a flat surface, the incline was greater than 50%.  It was a steep climb for a little old lady.  It generated some aerobic activity from my heart . But the most important lesson was what I hang onto to keep my balance; remind me to focus; live my life the way it is supposed to be lived; and do more than just get through it all.  


Today and since then, I kind of look forward to that Sole.  I feel as if I am accomplishing a little something.  And, if I can avoid moving into a larger pant size, I’ll really rejoice!

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