Lifetime Fitness & The Elliptical Machine

I’m a little bit jealous of my brother, Dave’s, workout facility.  When I was there last month I got to go to the fitness wonderland called Lifetime Fitness.  It was so amazing that I didn’t want to leave and I decided that I could’ve truly stayed there all day long to exercise, work out, swim, lounge, pay a little to get a massage…you get the picture.  This place had it all!  Oh, and they had what seemed like a bizillion cardio machines…

…Then I came home to my fitness club-Fitness USA.  Well, as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. I looked into Lifetime Fitness, and thought about Bally’s too, before making my decision for Fitness USA, but they were just too far away to commit to visiting 3-5 days a week.

It’s a workout facility that I’m glad I have available to me.  It’s helped me lose…a good amount of weight so far and it’s helping me get better at running.  One of my favorite machines is the elliptical machine.  When I go to the gym I start with 25 minutes of jogging, my weight training, and then 20-25 minutes of the elliptical machine.  The past couple of times that I went there I couldn’t get the elliptical machine-it was sooo busy.  So the one time I decided to do the bike and I learned that I only burn about 1/4 of the calories doing that.  Yeah, I won’t be doing that unless I’m desperate.  Then yesterday I did the stair climber and that was great because it burned a lot of calories, but what I decided was that I really loved the elliptical machine.  It burns a whole lot of calories but it relieves your knees of the impact of running.  Combined they’re really helping me build my cardio system.

This afternoon when I went I had to wait a minute to get on one, but at least I made it on one.  It was kind of funny though because this one lady was obnoxiously waiting to get on after the lady next to me.  She was calling her out for staying on past 20 minutes (the limit when it’s busy) and then talked about her bitterly after she left.  Classy entertainment at its best.  I hope I don’t get to the point that I get stressed out by people so much at the gym that it actually decreases the effectiveness of the stress-relievingness (?) of the workout itself. 

Week Of War

…no kidding! 
I’m enjoying our time spent on prayer and fasting as a church each month during W.O.W. week.  We’ve
got prayer meetings that are energized by the what the Holy Spirit is doing in us personally, a whole gathering devoted to worship and prayer (this week we have 2!) and a focused mission, that for a week we will push aside our flesh and depend upon Jesus to move in us through that.

Paul tell us in Ephesians-

13-18Be prepared. You’re up
against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you
can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but
the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace,
faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them.
You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable
weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare.
Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes
open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops

I’m definitely "up against far more than [I] can handle on [my] own."  I’m happy to utilize whatever weapons of destruction  I can against the enemy of my soul and the souls of others.  The past couple  of day have been such hard days for me for a few reasons, those of which I’m not going to share.  I felt so stressed and burnt out, and all I wanted to do was curl up in a ball, cry and go to bed.  Thankfully God smacked me out that, but I could definitely sense the spiritual warfare surrounding me.  There was a battle going on for my mind, my heart, my body and eventually even my soul. 

By the end of the day, yesterday, I only actually cried a few tears 🙂 and I went to bed with confidence of victory in my life.  When I woke up this morning I knew that the stress was still there and I thought, "Yep!  It certainly is a Week of War!"  There is no irony in that.  But I am so glad that through praise and prayer my heart, my mind, my body and my soul are all still in guarded in His hands.   

But, a week of war…yes, indeed.


"What’s worse, new wounds which are so horribly painful, or old wounds that should’ve healed years ago and never did?"-Meredith Grey

When wounds pile up, healing takes awhile. 

Wounds (old or new) + Jesus (and maybe some time) = Healing


"You’re a better person healed than you would’ve been well."-Beth Moore

(I heard someone quote this today and felt that it was a yet another great reminder of God making something of us through the different processes we experience.)

Long Enough

Do you ever feel like this?

Psalm 13 (The Message)


1-2 Long enough, God— you’ve ignored me long enough.
   I’ve looked at the back of your head
      long enough. Long enough
   I’ve carried this ton of trouble,
      lived with a stomach full of pain.
   Long enough my arrogant enemies
      have looked down their noses at me.

3-4 Take a good look at me, God, my God;
      I want to look life in the eye,
   So no enemy can get the best of me
      or laugh when I fall on my face.

5-6 I’ve thrown myself headlong into your arms—
      I’m celebrating your rescue.
   I’m singing at the top of my lungs,
      I’m so full of answered prayers.

Sometimes when I read passages of Scripture like this I think, "Who am I to tell God what I think?"-especially when I’m telling Him that enough is enough.  But when I shrink back from expressing my frustrations and  anxiety  to Him, I miss out  on Him helping me through the process.  God is not scared of what I feel or have to say to Him.  He can handle it.  Plus, His desire is for me to go through the processes that cause me to grow stronger in Him, through His hope and answers to prayer.  I’m glad that God doesn’t want me to shrink back in fear every time a tough issue comes up.  It’s encouraging to know that He is my Knight in shining armor, rescuing me when I’m hurt, confused and frustrated.  Other tough issues that I sometimes deal with are things like:  ministry, how to help those struggling with homosexuality, helping those with addictions and even the Trinity (I thank God that I have a pastor who will preach on the tough issues). 

I find it interesting that God likes me as much as He does, because I shrink back, I fail and I fall on my face often enough.  But when I’m on my face, I’m on my knees, and I guess in the end that’s a great place to be.

Psalm 18

1-2 I love you, God— you make me strong.
   God is bedrock under my feet,
      the castle in which I live,
      my rescuing knight.
   My God—the high crag
      where I run for dear life,
      hiding behind the boulders,
      safe in the granite hideout.

3 I sing to God, the Praise-Lofty,
      and find myself safe and saved.

Jen’s Dream

My roommate, Jen, sent me an email today.  This is what it said…

i had a funny dream about you last
night.   you were secretly dating a guy and you wouldn’t tell me who
he was or anything about him-and i was so upset cause you wouldn’t tell
me.  in the dream, i was hanging out with a couple of other people and they
knew all about him.  his name was ben and he was a state trooper.  so,
if you meet any state troopers named ben, watch out!  🙂

You heard it here, folks! 🙂