Sitting out



Have you ever started something and once you were too far in to really get out, you realized that the whole thing was turning out to be WAY bigger than you thought it was going to be?

I can honestly say that I really had never experienced something like that until this year.  I mean sure I had projects in college that ended up taking way more time than I thought they would or other small circumstances that ended up being hard than I had first imagined, but really for the most part my perfectionist personality kept me relatively safe from situations like that.

I am one of those people that like to fully evaluate my success and/or the outcome before jumping into things.  I don’t like failure.  And I don’t like to quit.  So in order to keep myself from having to fail or quit, I just don’t do it.  

I am by no means marketing this method.  It has kept me on the sidelines way too many times to count.  I end up watching instead of experiencing far too often. 

So please don’t let me be your teacher.

But, the times are changing even for me.

Last month I decided to undertake something in which I wasn’t sure I would actually be successful.  I decided it was time to do something about my health…lose weight, eat right, get healthy.  I knew it was going to be hard. I knew I would struggle.

You want the truth, though?

Deep down, I really did think I was going to rock it.  I knew I would struggle a bit in the beginning to find my groove, but I really believed that I was going to be able to whip this body of mine into shape in no time.  I truly thought that once those initials cravings subsided, I would even enjoy the whole healthy eating part.

How wrong I was.

This journey has been one of the most mentality and spiritually challenging things I have ever done.  In some ways, I can even say I have felt it has started consuming my life.

Now before you all start worrying about my mental stability, hear me out.

I know that at the end of the day my worth is not based on the size of my pants. I really do get that, even if at times I struggle with making that my reality.  I know that Sara is worth it because God says she is…not whether or not I am pretty enough to be on the front of a magazine.  

That being said, though, for the first time in my life, I am embarking on something that on many occasions and even days makes me feel like a failure.  And that is hard. 

On Friday, I got weighed again.  The week before last I was down 5 lbs since I started and had lost 1.5% body fat and gained 1% muscle.  That was a little over three weeks since I had started.  Then this past week, my counselor weighed me and measured me.  

Guess what…I gained weight! WHAT! Yes, I had actually gained. Sure I had lost a total of 19 cm throughout my body (chest, arms, waist, legs, etc.).  But, I GAINED WEIGHED!

Heck no!

I was so upset.  Devastated really.

How was it that I had been working my butt off…exercising 4 to 5 times a week, really trying to watch EVERY SINGLE MORSEL of food that went into my mouth and I gained.  It was only a slight gain but a gain nonetheless.

No freaking way!

Yesterday we took the kids to the mall.  Hubby had to run an errand there, and the kids really like playing in their playground area.  We decided it would be cheaper and easier to take the kids up to the food court for lunch.  They like it and it was cheaper than a sit down restaurant.   The kids were easy and soon enough Hubby was at the table with their food and his and everyone was chowing down.  I, however, walked around in a circle for at least 15 minutes trying to figure out what to eat.  I knew what I wanted to eat…but I also knew what I should eat.  All I could think about was the scale used to weigh me the day before.

So I just kept walking in circles…trying not to cry and trying even harder not to be angry at all the skinny folks sitting at those tables gorging themselves on the sweet, deliciousness of pizza and tacos and hamburgers.  I tried to hold my breath as the mouth-watering aroma from Cinnabon filled the area.  

Here’s the thing, I knew I could just go up to the counter, order whatever I wanted, eaten it and moved on.  It was one meal anyway. It wasn’t the end of the world.   Hello at least I had food to eat.  Can we say “first world problems” anyone?

But, it was so much deeper than that for me.  And it still is today.

I know that my life lacks discipline.  I know that I am too easily enticed by things that feel good, taste good, are easy, etc.  My flesh wants to surround itself by things that are easy and fun and make me feel good and make me happy.  

I, one hundred percent, believe that food and life and everything else should be enjoyed!  Of course this is true!  I know that God wants us to rejoice in his creation and in this beautiful life that we get the privilege of living.  I am not arguing that point at all.  

But I do think that there is a fine line between filling our lives only with things that make us feel good and learning that sometimes we have to practice self-control, discipline, etc.  

There will be red velvet cake again in my future.  There will be pizza and pasta.  I even plan on eating at what some would say is the most disgusting fast food place on this earth, Taco Bell again.  I don’t feel like God is asking me to give all of those things up forever and always.  

No, it isn’t about what I will never have.  

It is actually about what I can have.

Discipline.

Self-control.

Power.

And even joy.

Finding joy in saying no sometimes.

And also finding joy in saying yes.  Yes to things that are hard and scary and seemingly impossible.  

I don’t want to sit on the sidelines of my own life.

I don’t want to say no just because I think I might fail.

I want to learn to GET.BACK.UP!

This is so not easy.  It is so hard.  And mostly I hate every second of having to be around others enjoying food that I also love to eat.  I hate having to say no more often than yes. 

But I am going to keep going because it matters too much to stop.  I am not even talking about the health repercussions of being overweight and unhealthy.  I would keep going even taking that out of the equation.

Because for the first time in my life, I want to find success at something not because it was easy or because I was naturally gifted.  I want to find the victory fighting every step of the way.  I want to find the beauty in the fight and in the struggle.   

Easy doesn’t make character.
Easy only makes the hard that much scarier.

Look around you.  I bet your life is filled with so many just sitting on the sidelines for fear of what is going to happen if they actually get up and play.  

God cannot use us on the sidelines.  We are of no use as spectators.  

God wants players.  

This world needs players.  People willing to do things that are hard…that hurt…that require sacrifice and/or discipline.  

Don’t just take my word for it.  Ask any famous athlete or musician or really any “great.” Ask them if that win or that symphony or that moment would have been as great if they were just sitting on the side.  Sure maybe they were a part of the team or a part of the group but without having participated, I am certain that the moment of “victory” was greatly reduced for them.  The thrill can never be the same for the spectator as it is for the participant. It just isn’t possible. 




We weren’t meant to sit on the sidelines, folks.  

I only have one life, and I, for one, refuse to spend it watching.





[Side note: For any of you that do know a lot about exercising and eating right, if you could give me any advice as to why in the world I gained after working my butt off last week, I would greatly appreciate your help. I was not perfect everyday, but I know that I did not eat enough to warrant a weight gain...and I worked out 5 days last week.  So like I said, if you could offer any tips and/or advice, that would be lovely.]

Donna  – (September 22, 2014 at 8:17 AM)  

The weight gain was because muscle weighs more than fat, and you were building muscle last week. If you are still losing inches, that is the measure that is important to follow. Great article - keep on keeping on!

Jade Tibbins  – (September 23, 2014 at 7:45 AM)  

I agree with Donna. You are looking great and I am sure you are feeling cleaner. Muscle weighs more than fat and your cm address just falling off. You are doing it girl!

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Some bits and bobbits about this blog...

This blog is mostly just ramblings by yours truly. I talk about my ups and downs being a wife, mother, and missionary in Guatemala. I have a tendency to get off on "soapboxes" as those who love me say but it is my desire that this blog can be a place of encouragement in each of your pilgrimages with Christ. At any moment if this blog becomes more about me than about Christ, than it will be done and over...so please help me stay accountable. To God be all the Glory, Honor, and Power!

Books I am currently reading...

  • Eight Twenty Eight
  • Interrupted
  • The Connected Child
  • This Momentary Marriage
  • Unbroken

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