Tuesday, January 10, 2012


2012: A Year of Thanksgiving a Praise
Day 10: I'm Thankful for Movement

I've been gradually getting back into my familiar routines. One thing that I have been lacking -- and actually missing -- is movement. 

Granted, I wasn't too fond of physical education when I was younger. I didn't like sports of any kind. I can remember in High School when I had to take gymnastics. I told my teacher that I wasn't good at sports. One day we were supposed to stand on our heads, or something silly like that. I didn't want to do it. I told her I would only end up hurting myself if she made me do it. 

She made me... 

...I hurt myself.

I ended up spraining my big toe so badly that I had to use crutches for a couple of weeks to get around. 

Okay, you can stop laughing now. 

Yes, I heard you. I know it's pretty lame (no pun intended) to sprain your big toe in gymnastics class. But somehow I managed it. And high school was Monterey Bay Academy, a boarding school. Very picturesque and beautiful with sidewalks on sloping hills from the dormitory to the classrooms and back up to the cafeteria... on crutches. 

They gave me a prescription of pain medicine. I never took it for my toe, I took it about a half hour before I had to go up and down that hill.

Since I had to take PE, and I didn't like sports, I decided to sign up for running and discovered that I actually enjoyed it. I was pretty good at long distance running. I was thin and had long legs, so running was a natural fit for my body type. 

After I graduated from high school I discovered that I really liked to dance. I had never danced before. We didn't have dances. Dancing wasn't allowed. Instead, we had banquets. So dancing was something totally new and exciting for me. And, incidentally, a great form of exercise. 

I discovered that, like running, dancing came naturally to me. I would go from the discos in San Francisco, to the country bars in the South Bay where I learned how to line dance and swing dance, which was actually my favorite, except you had to have a good partner for that, and they seemed to be few and far between. 

In Southern California, I still went dancing sometimes, but I also started going to the gym and lifting weights -- nothing too serious. I never became muscle bound, but I enjoyed a good workout followed by a nice, relaxing sauna.

In Arkansas, I turned to the great outdoors -- this is, after all, the Natural State. We have more than 250 wilderness hiking trails in this state. When we first moved out here, Saturday was hiking day. Nick and I would pack our backpacks, look at one of our hiking books and select a trail for a day hike. Most of the time we would choose a waterfall to hike to. There is nothing like spending the day out in nature enjoying God's creation.

I also started using exercise DVDs. I had used them some out in California, but in Arkansas, you never know what the weather is going to be like. We get quite a bit of rain. We also actually have winter here, something I was not at all used to in California! I can here those of you in the Northern states laughing at what I call "winter". Okay, so it only snows an average of 2 days a year here. That's plenty as far as I'm concerned!

Anyway, after months -- okay, more like years -- of not really being able to exercise, shall we say I was a little out of shape? So, this week, I started my exercise program again using DVDs for now so that I can exercise in the comfort of my own living room. 

And you know what? I've really missed moving! I've missed stretching out my limbs. I've missed my heart pumping oxygenated blood through my body. I've missed taking in deep breaths of air. I've missed that pleasant soreness from working muscles that have been unused for far too long. And I've missed the burst of energy you get from a good workout.

I haven't experienced the sustained energy, yet. But, I know it's only a matter of time before that kicks back in too. Our bodies are amazing things. 

"I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well." 
~ Psalm 139:14

We were created to move. 

I'm thankful for movement.

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