Catch that sunrise. Breathe in the clear air before the smog settles in.
Sounds wonderful… now, but not at 5:55am. I have a really hard time motivating myself to actually jump out of bed a little earlier to go for a walk first thing. I don’t think that 20 minutes of sleep actually do anything for me, but they are very convincing in the moment.
So, in order to win the debate against my snooze button and embrace the fresh morning air, I will now list 7 reasons WHY a morning jog is just so sensational:
1. Jogging (or walking) in morning is a heart-healthy habit. It gets the blood pumping. Reminds me to avoid walking around zombie-style all day, as if I don’t have a pulse. I may not need to be aware of my cardio-vascular system in my mid-twenties, but its never too early to start a habit that will be helpful later.
2. It reminds me to stretch. It is awkward to run without stretching my muscles first. So it helps me kick out 2 healthy habits in one.
3. Here’s what I get to jog by every morning:
These epic alpacas are owned by the campus where we live, but we feel a certain attachment to them. They are, after all, our closest neighbors.
I feel like this reason alone should be sufficient. But I will continue.
4. 15 minutes of outdoor-activity freshens my perspective. I realize life is not all about laundry, missed blog posts, morning breath, and sleeping in. There is a big, bright world out there with God’s fingerprints all over it. Great reminder that the same beauty is imprinted on me. I am a beautiful part of creation too.
5. Jogging helps me stay in shape. I can strive to preserve the masterpiece God made me to be as a part of His creation.
6. It gives me a chance to listen to a motivating sermon podcast or my encouraging work out playlist. It’s another way I can multitask habits for a fantastic morning routine. I can simultaneously pursue outer fitness and focus on my inner-self looking more like Christ.
7. Cold showers feel great after a swift jog. I don’t worry about Shane taking all the hot water. Also, cold showers set a different tone for the day: energy and get-go. This is a productive change from my hot shower routine…. lackadaisical and dragging.
There you have it: 7 reasons not to hit the snooze button…Here’s to keeping up good habits in the morning!
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My mom is running in the Princess Half-Marathon in Disney World this coming February. I am so beyond proud of her fitness journey; I know the race in Disney World will be another impactful way to commemorate how far she has come.
When I ran the Princess 1/2 Marathon with my mom and sister last year, I was amazed at what God was doing with me physically, and spiritually. God taught me so much through that journey.
It became a parallel race to my journey with God. First of all, when I gave my life to Christ, I was adopted as a child of God. If God is the King of kings, that makes me a princess.
It was just too fitting to wear a tiara for the Princess 1/2 Marathon.
But as a servant of the Almighty, I am also called to be a warrior in God’s army, strong and courageous.
In my walk with God there are lots of people to run along side of…. some of them even seem a little crazy (you know, that church), but we are all running to Jesus, no matter our differences.
Still, loneliness can settle in, even among the crowd. I have to remember that even the people that “bug” me can still be greatest support as a Christian.
I will face evil…
I will feel like I can’t keep the pace…
Or maybe I’ll want to take an easier, faster route, like the Monorail…
There will be road blocks in my walk with God, but God will always provide a safe path for me.
I will get excited about my spiritual mile markers…. like baptism, sharing my testimony, developing healthy habits, and growing closer to God.
I am so blessed to share this walk with God with my husband…
Maybe I’ll someday get to carry someone else on the journey…
I will run into some pretty crazy people as a Christian…
Unlike 1/2 Marathons, we don’t get a “half-way-there” sign in life. Still, every day is another breath, another step, another opportunity to walk with God or lose heart….
Don’t lose heart.
No matter what look like, we are all princesses, so lets stop comparing and act daughters of God together.
When I came to the castle in the Magic Kingdom, the song “Oh Praise Him” by David Crowder Band came on my running playlist. I was overwhelmed with the joy that I had “made it to the castle;” but when that song came on, my joy shifted to thinking of how amazing the joy will be when I finally make it to God’s castle!
As I “turned my ear to Heaven,” I was overwhelmed with the expectation of joy and unshifting rest I will experience when I reach heaven. I will truly be singing “O praise Him, He is Holy, Hallelujah, He is Holy.”
Call it a runner’s high, but I actually started singing and skipping, running with my arms stretched out, just completely in love with Jesus and running figuratively to him.
It was then that I ran into my mom. Well really, she was running into me. Apparently she had been calling out my name for several minutes, trying to catch up to me…. all the while I was blasting worship music on my iPod, completely unaware of my surroundings. She finally tapped me on the shoulder; as soon as I noticed her she swiftly took a deep breath and a short pause (I have no idea how long she had been keeping my pace, but I have much longer legs than she does.)
From that point on we ran together. My mom was discouraged and in a lot of pain from a foot problem, but she is so tough. She could have written the definition of endurance that day.
In a race this large, safety precautions require people on bikes and driving vans to follow the final runners, just in case they need medical attention or would rather ride comfortably to the finish line in the air-conditioning. With the safety guys hovering like vultures behind us, we pressed on. The last mile was the longest. Everyone kept encouraging us, “You are almost there.” We wanted to bite their heads off.
But then…. the finish line. My mom picked up her pace and finished the race faithfully. I stopped and did a “Tebow” right before the finish line, putting my time a few seconds back in the name of Jesus and football. (I do NOT recommend doing this if you are not at the end of the line, with no one to run into you when you stop suddenly.)
It was a mind-altering journey to say the least. I grew leaps and bounds in my relationship with God that day; my confidence rose too, in pushing my body to new limits and reveling in the abilities God gave me. The final lesson is this:
“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.” 1 Corinthians 9:25-27