Monday, October 11, 2010

Accountable & Disciplined

If you read my personal blog, you know that I recently starting the Couch to 5K training Program.  To really understand why I did this, you need to know a couple things about me, including the fact that I have struggled with my self-image for a long time.  One of the stepping stones my life always seems to get stuck on is weight.  I take one step forward and two steps back on a regular basis.  To get the whole story about why I decided to do this and the lies I'm so good at believing, read this post.

The first couple days, I set my alarm early and got up without much issue, really.  Then Friday hit. I did NOT want to get out of bed.  In fact, I wanted to do anything but get up and go do interval training at the gym.  But, I did it.  Do you know why?  Because someone else was counting on me to get up and do this thing, even though staying in bed seemed like a much better option.  From that realization came the first lesson I've learned over the last two weeks of training. 

Accountability is everything.
For this particular program and place in my life, I knew I needed someone who was willing to walk (or run) beside me and keep me going even when it felt like I was losing the battle.  I found that partner in my friend, Beth.  Neither one of us are "morning people."  Neither one of us have a particular desire to be runners, but we both wanted to do something that would challenge us and make us healthier.  Therefore, we decided to do this program together.  Even though we don't work out in the same physical space, we are working out at the same time. Those 7am texts are what keep me going when my bed is calling my name.

It's funny how easy it is to apply accountability to everything else in my life, as well.  It's so easy to let things slip through the cracks or put off until tomorrow what should be done today when there is no one there holding us accountable.  For me and the C25K, I needed someone who would be encouraging, uplifting...and who would get out of bed and do it!  I could say the same thing for so many other areas of my life - friendships, Bible study, finances, marriage - I need someone that will hold me accountable, but will do so with grace and joy.  I have found that my accountability with Beth goes beyond our C25K commitment - God is using it to hold us together and strengthen our friendship in other ways.

The other lesson that has come out of the last two weeks is one of discipline.

Discipline means ignoring the "I don't wanna" voice in my head.
That voice inside my head that tells me I don't have to get up, that I will be able to do it later, that it doesn't really matter - that voice is LOUD.  For years now, I've listened to that voice.  That's why, after the second day of this training, this program has been more about discipline for me than it has been about running.  If I'm completely honest, I'm not a good runner. I'm not fast, nor graceful and I'm not very good at getting going first thing in the morning.  So discipline is the part of me that silences the "I don't wanna" voice and gets up and does it anyway.  I wake up, stumble out of bed and get to the gym, all the while thinking in my head, "I don't wanna!"  But as soon as I'm on the treadmill with music blaring and legs pumping, I feel better. 

The truth is this - no one likes discipline, but sometimes we need it.  I'm not talking about the discipline from our parents because we've done something wrong, but rather the discipline to keep going and keep doing something even when we're discouraged, tired or just simply don't want to do it.

Guess what!  It's working!  Every time I get up and go even when I don't want to, I feel a little better about myself.  I feel a little stronger, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.  I feel like I've accomplished something.  I'm proud of myself and willing to do it again.

It doesn't mean the whole cycle doesn't start over the next time I wake up to that silly alarm clock; but slowly the getting up is getting easier and the workouts are getting harder!  Thank You, Lord!

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