Tag Archives: determination

What keeps me up at night…

unhealthySome time ago a pastor asked me some questions relating to passion and making a difference in this world.  It invigorated me when  he asked the following:  “What drives you to do what you do? What is your “inward discontent” that keeps you up at night?  Better yet, what are you doing every day to make a difference in that area?”

Well, here is my “inward discontent:”  The sobering fact is that the majority of Americans are at a great health risk because they are overweight (dangerously so). That troubles me for sure.  But what keeps me even more troubled is that  Christians, and in particular pastors, have higher obesity rates and poorer health than the average American.                                         

Studies say that the average pastor’s health is significantly worse than others on the planet.  At a recent annual leadership meeting of ministers in a mainline denomination free health screenings were administered. Of those screened more than 73 percent were found to be overweight or obese. If you are keeping track, that is a much higher percentage than those outside the church.  On average, a pastor’s health risk is more than a 10% higher than the average person.

What really pains me is that I have had to help bury way too many of my colleagues who died an early death due to not taking care of themselves and poor health habits.  The tragedy?  Most of these were 100 per cent preventable.

There is something wrong about that. So I know that I have to take my share of responsibility for setting the right example.  I need to show people that God can help us in every aspect of life, including our health.  If I refuse to take care of my body, I set a poor example as a leader of God’s church.

As pastors and leaders this means that you have a responsibility to help train your family and your church to take care of their bodies. Let’s be a good example!

“Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.” 1 Peter 5:2-4

You can be an example that food is given to us by God to be enjoyed–not to be abused.  As Christians we can’t be telling people on one hand that we are all about the glory of God, and then kill ourselves with the food we are stuffing in our body.

Maybe it would be a good idea to re-think our prayers before our meals asking for God’s wisdom and discipline to manage what we eat, as opposed to just blessing what we are about to eat.  In our gratefulness we should thank God for providing the food and then remind ourselves to enjoy our food, not to worship it.

Bottom line is we need to take care of ourselves!  According to Leadership Journal, a pastor works on average 55-60 hours a week and is so busy taking care of everyone else’s needs that they often neglect their own, especially their health.  Nationwide, an estimated 1,500 pastors leave their assignments each month because of poor health and ministry-related stress.

Chances are very high that your effectiveness in ministry will be limited if you are unhealthy and overweight. You will not be able to maximize your ability to shepherd, study, teach, preach and care as you should.

This is the way that I see it: If you are a minister then you are leader. That means God daily gives you the opportunity to set the example that God cares about every aspect of our life, including and especially our health.  Not only that, you have an incredible opportunity to show your people the way to balance mind, body and spirit in a healthy way.  With God’s help you can do it!

I can do all this through Him who gives me strength.” Ephesians 6:10  NIV

Back to the first part of this blog that asked, “What is your “inward discontent and what are you doing every day to make a difference in that area?” My goal is to partner with pastors to give them the tools and resources to take care of themselves, their families, and their churches.  I am committed to do what I can to help turn the tide.  I have lost too many friends to heart attacks, high blood pressure and diabetes.  Through this healthy FIT FOREVER blog, my workshops, and a new book called “FIT (Not Fat) FOREVER” coming out I am determined to make a difference to help as many people as I can.  Feel free to “Follow” this blog for up to date blogs and daily motivations.

The time has come to commit ourselves to taking care of this body that God has given us. We must remember that we will only receive one body in the span of our life, and it’s up to us to do all that we can to take care of it.  Here are some healthy tips to get us started: http://wp.me/pGpee-2W

 

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Body, Mind, and Spirit, Fit Forever, Health and Wellness, healthy balance, weight loss

It’s time to take charge of your body

prevention

“The patient should be made to understand that he or she must take charge of his own life.  Don’t take your body to the doctor as if he were a repair shop.”   Quentin Regestein

Going to the doctor is okay as we need to seek medical attention to treat sickness.  But that is merely a “reactive” approach to when we encounter a problem with our health.

The World Health Organization says that we are to embrace a proactive, not a reactive solution to being healthy.   They call it, “Preventive, curative and palliative interventions.”  This means it is not just our doctor’s job to make us healthy.

Bottom line, it is our personal responsibility to pursue a healthy lifestyle.  It is high time for us to realize that it’s not the job of our spouse, friend, or neighbor to motivate us toward health.   The responsibility lies with each of us to learn how to take care of the body that is given to us.  It is ours to manage for a lifetime.

Where to begin?  Let’s start by getting our minds around the kind of changes we want to attain with our bodies. The sculptor creates his work of art in his mind before even touching the workable clay.  We can do the same with changes that we want to make in the course of this year.

Take a deep breath and be still for a few minutes.  Begin to get that visual in your mind of what you want your strong, healthy and energetic body to look like.  Close your eyes and keep them closed until you have the clear, attainable picture in your mind.

Begin to make a list of 5 goals that are important to you, and begin to think about some baby steps toward those goals.

Remember, we will change our body when we change our mind; and not until then.

*For help with getting a plan together check out the FIT FOREVER book series here

Leave a comment

Filed under Body, Mind, and Spirit, Fit Forever, Health and Wellness, healthy balance, weight loss

Getting Healthy in Body, Mind and Spirit

body mind spirit

Every man is the builder of a temple called his body -Henry David Thoreau

We must take responsibility as builders for the temple that we call our body.  Day by day we are adding brick and mortar or taking the wrecking ball to this sacred place.

It’s not up to anyone else to do the building.  If our body is going to be healthy we must be the one to make the right daily choices to see it happen.

The decision to find balance with eating smart and exercise is up to you. This doesn’t have to be taken to the extreme.  Carve out a little time today and go for a walk. Eat some fruit instead of a candy bar. Get enough sleep for a change (8 hours a night).  Make a mindful decision to build up and not tear down this magnificent temple called your body.    For some more health tips check out  http://wp.me/pGpee-2W

Leave a comment

Filed under Body, Mind, and Spirit, Fit Forever, Health and Wellness, healthy balance, weight loss

Excuses are for Slackers

If we think hard enough each of us can come up with excuses for not being as healthy as we should be.

Excuses are weak.  They merely hamper our ability to overcome the obstacles before us.  They point the finger to other people or circumstances and keep us from taking the vital steps to change our lives for the better.  At times all of us can throw the pity party and play the excuse game.  Last time I threw a pity party nobody showed up but me!

It’s time to make a decision once and for all to take care of our body.  It deserves the best of our care all of the time, not just when we feel like it.  It’s a good thing we don’t just show up to work when we feel like it, or pay bills when we feel like it.

How many times have you thought about skipping a workout because you were “too tired” to exercise, but when you have gone despite your fatigue, you have felt much more awake and energized afterward?  Whether we feel like exercising or not, when we go ahead and do it we always reap the benefits.

It is a proven fact that people who exercise regularly have more energy, a sharper mind, as well as strength and endurance to get through their day.  When your body is working at peak efficiency, your energy levels soar!  So let’s get rid of those excuses and take care of our bodies like we should.

Next time you are tempted to go down the road of excuses just remember that they are for slackers.  And that’s not you!

Leave a comment

Filed under Health and Wellness, weight loss

“The Body is a marvelous machine” -Theodor Herzl

“The body is a marvelous machine…a chemical laboratory, a power-house.  Every movement, voluntary  or involuntary, is full of secrets and marvels.”    –Theodor Herzl

Most of us just don’t realize what an amazing gift our body is to us. It is a miraculous complex laboratory of chemicals that can achieve astounding things when maintained properly.

Did you know that your stomach cells secrete hydrochloric acid to break down foods for our digestive system?  This type of acid is a corrosive compound used to treat metals in the industrial world. It can pickle steel, but the mucous lining the walls of our stomach keep this poisonous liquid safely in the digestive system. Amazing!

Yet surprisingly enough, many of us use our body as a guinea pig by experimenting with any diet plan that comes along. That’s what America does, bouncing from one diet fad to another.  From liquid diets where nothing is consumed except three shakes a day to drinking grapefruit juice after every meal.   Then there’s the no carbohydrate diet, egg and banana diet, and of all things, the hot dog diet.  Give me a break!

Most of us don’t realize that when we decide to go on every diet that comes along, we put our bodies into major shock! In fact, many diets can be dangerous to our health.  Most diets call for times of starvation, when we deprive our bodies of the necessary nutrients that they need on a daily basis. When we go without food for long periods our body actually shifts into a protective mode thinking that we are starving. This mode literally slows our metabolism and holds onto fat, storing it for use as the body needs it in the absence of food. So the well-intentioned dieter actually defeats the very purpose that they have set out to accomplish; they are storing more fat as opposed to burning it.

Weight loss is actually a fairly easy equation. Burning more calories than you consume equals weight lost. Consuming the same amount of calories as calories burned, weight is maintained. Taking in more calories than what you burn, weight increases.

The best thing we can do is to look at food as fuel that our bodies need on a regular basis. If your car’s gas tank is on empty, you can guarantee you won’t be going anywhere until you fill it up with fuel. We would not think of doing something as senseless as putting water or oil into the gas tank of our car, because we know that it will cause major damage to the engine.

However, day in and day out we choose to put the wrong fuel into our bodies. The food that we eat contributes greatly to how we feel. Many of us have simply fallen into bad habits that are hard to break, and our bodies are paying the price for it. The sad fact is that we do not suffer from a lack of information. The challenge comes in applying the relevant, life changing principles to our own lives.

Your body is miraculous. You only get one for a lifetime, so do everything you can to take care of it.

Leave a comment

Filed under Body, Mind, and Spirit, Health and Wellness, weight loss

It’s time to take charge

“The patient should be made to understand that he or she must take charge of his own life.  Don’t take your body to the doctor as if he were a repair shop.”   Quentin Regestein

Going to the doctor is okay as we need to seek medical attention to treat sickness.  But that is merely a “reactive” approach to when we encounter a problem with our health.

The World Health Organization says that we are to embrace a proactive, not a reactive solution to being healthy.   They call it, “Preventive, curative and palliative interventions.”  This means it is not just our doctor’s job to make us healthy.

Bottom line, it is our personal responsibility to pursue a healthy lifestyle.  It is high time for us to realize that it’s not the job of our spouse, friend, or neighbor to motivate us toward health.   The responsibility lies with each of us to learn how to take care of the body that is given to us.  It is ours to manage for a lifetime.

Where to begin?  Let’s start by getting our minds around the kind of changes we want to attain with our bodies. The sculptor creates his work of art in his mind before even touching the workable clay.  We can do the same with changes that we want to make in 2011.

Take a deep breath and be still for a few minutes.  Begin to get that visual in your mind of what you want your strong, healthy and energetic body to look like.  Close your eyes and keep them closed until you have the clear, attainable picture in your mind.

Begin to make a list of 5 goals that are important to you, and begin to think about some baby steps toward those goals.

Remember, we will change our body when we change our mind; and not until then.

*For help with getting a plan together check out the FIT FOREVER book series here

Leave a comment

Filed under Health and Wellness, weight loss

Anyone Under Pressure?

“In minds crammed with thoughts, organs clogged with toxins, and bodies stiffened with neglect, there is just no space for anything else.”    Alison Rose Levy

Sometimes our bodies bear the brunt of our busy, crazy pace that we keep.

One out of every four Americans has high blood pressure.  That’s about 60 million of us. This causes a lot of force on the arteries, taking a serious toll on them.

Think of a water balloon that is being pumped completely full.  Too much pressure causes calamity.  Likewise, when our blood pressure is too high it poses a serious health risk of heart attack, stroke, and kidney disease.

To lower your blood pressure:

  • Eat Healthy

Eating a diet that is rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products and skimps on saturated fat and cholesterol can lower your blood pressure

  • Reduce Salt in your diet

Even a small reduction in the salt, (sodium) in your diet can reduce blood pressure significantly. Most healthy adults need only between 1,500 and 2,400 milligrams (mg) of sodium a day. But if you have high blood pressure, aim for less than 1,500 mg of sodium a day.

To decrease sodium in your diet, consider the following:

Track how much salt is in your diet. Keep a food diary to estimate how much sodium is in what you eat and drink each day.

Read food labels. If possible, choose low-sodium alternatives of the foods and beverages you normally buy.

Eat fewer processed foods. Potato chips, frozen dinners, bacon and processed lunch meats are high in sodium.

Don’t add salt. Just 1 level teaspoon of salt has 2,300 mg of sodium. Use herbs or spices, rather than salt, to add more flavor to your foods.

Ease into it. If you don’t feel like you can drastically reduce the sodium in your diet suddenly, cut back gradually. Your palate will adjust over time.

  • Lose Some Weight

Lose extra pounds and watch your waistline.  Blood pressure often increases as weight increases. Losing just 10 pounds can help reduce your blood pressure. In general, the more weight you lose, the lower your blood pressure. Losing weight also makes any blood pressure medications you’re taking more effective. You and your doctor can determine your target weight and the best way to achieve it.

Besides shedding pounds, you should also keep an eye on your waistline. Carrying too much weight around your waist can put you at greater risk of high blood pressure.

  • Exercise More

Regular physical activity — at least 30 minutes most days of the week — can lower your blood pressure more than any other way. And it doesn’t take long to see a difference. If you haven’t been active, increasing your exercise level can lower your blood pressure within just a few weeks.

As you keep your blood pressure in check, you are on your way to living a healthier, and happier life.  You  can do it!

1 Comment

Filed under Health and Wellness