It’s no secret that the body and the mind are connected. We’ve heard many times, that a clean body makes a clean mind. But what about the spirit….
My girlfriend and I decided that we’d start eating better. We’d start working out, and bettering our bodies, with the goal of having a long enjoyable life together.
No lie she fears for me, and the horrible ways I eat and the lack of workouts as of late. Quite frankly she has good reason, and in my experience it’s best to listen to your other half.
When she met me 5 years ago, I was an athlete. I was preparing to go play college football, working out all the time, and at a good slim 250 pounds. Over those 5 years I’ve had many roller coasters in my weight and workout regiment. Not even a year ago, I was at the pinnacle of my physicality. Back in February, I had no doubts in my mind that I could’ve walked onto BYU’s football field and played football like I did when I was young….
Then something happened…
I got injured. I hurt my back to the point where I couldn’t walk, I got scared, I stopped working out, and I stopped caring….
Not caring screwed me over. I work a desk job. I don’t work the manual labor jobs of years past, and sit at a desk for 9 hours a day. I eat like complete crap, and I don’t workout.
Well as of a week ago, my girlfriend and I were talking, and she again for the millionth time let me know she worried for me, after about 6000 times it begins to sink in and you decide maybe it’s time for a change.
The first part was the dieting, Eating clean, and striving to stop bad habits formed over the last year, the second and most important part was getting over my fear of getting hurt again. That fear and that pain in my lower back was loud in my ears and kept me away from any gym.
Monday, I packed my gym bag that morning, and I got my preworkout ready, and I got prepared for a day 1 of a new start. That meant:
1. Only water and juices that are natural.
2. Limiting the amount of bad food I put into my body (*much harder than you think, a few slip ups)
3. Working out atleast 3 days a week until I can get back up on my normal “Beastmode” like levels.
4. Trying to sleep better.
5. Focus on the matters of the spirit more…
Now lets jump into number 5…. “Focus on the matters of the spirit more…”
When most people think of getting healthy, they don’t consider the spiritual matter behind it. Now it’s no secret I am a spiritual person with a deep testimony in our savior and his gospel, but until a few days ago, it never occurred to me that maybe the other thing holding me back from being healthy was the lack or atleast the limit of spirituality I had put on myself…
Let me explain. The combination of Spirit and body is no secret. When I was in high school, I used to tell my mother all the time “My body is a temple”. It was a mantra I lived by. No drinking, no smoking, no bad foods, working out constantly, and being ready to lay someone out on Friday.
Now over those next 5 or so years after high sxhool, I began to deter from that mantra, and certain changes took place. Especially when I was away at college during off season.
I have a firm belief as it has been taught, that a good healthy spirit wont find residence in an unclean body! If we live healthy as well as spiritual lifestyles our lives will be better.
The last 8 or so months in many aspects have been some of the best months I’ve had, but in terms of health have been horrible, and it’s all because of how I felt about myself. Living in the fear of possibly injuring myself kept me away from the gym, in turn my body took a turn for a route I did not want it to go, and constantly being reminded by friends that “oh you should get back at it… there’s some pounds you could lose… you’re just not who you were…” got annoying real quick, and it sucked to be honest. I didn’t want to do it because my friends told me to do it. But it was more or less the loving words of my girlfriend that helped me get over that hump.
The thought of her and I going far in eternity and then me not being able to continue this mortal journey with her because I had health issues, or the thought I wouldn’t be able to play with my future children because I was broken apart and fat scared the crap out of me. Or even worse the thought of my parents burying me…
So I changed…. Although it is not easy
Being healthy and finding that spiritual balance is about many things, but none is more important than your own personal influence.
If you’re in the process of making a spiritual and physical change, find and hold to something that matters most. There’s a scripture that I remember reading and I’ll paraphrase, “Where your heart is, is where your desires will be”. With a healthy body, and regular spiritual involvement, whether it be church attendance, scripture reading, temple attendance, prayer, what ever it may be, and at the end of the day that spiritual and mental strength will help to get over any obstacle that is holding you back.
I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors! I hope you can find a point in your life when Beast-mode meets the Spirit!