Today I was listening to a podcast from Alexis and Robyn. It was really good. They talked about set points, stress, amenorrhea, exercise, and so much more. It really got me thinking about your stress point and my stress point. They’re different. It’s really easy to compare lifestyles and think, ‘Why am I so stressed if they have a much busier life than me and they’re not stressed?” Well, I think that has to do with stress points. There are so many different stressors in our lives, and each of us has different points at which we can’t handle any more. I know that God has given me different abilities and limitations, and I’m learning those. There is a point where my body is happy but not overly stressed, and this podcast was a wonderful reminder that all of us are completely different in that way.
This is something I’m learning. It’s hard. It’s hard to not think about why I can’t run my own business and run marathons and work another job on the side. But I can’t, and I’m finding freedom in confessing that and being able to step back and do the things that aren’t too stressful for me. I can work on my computer, but I can’t do it for 3 or 4 hours at a time. I have to go outside and enjoy fresh air or wash laundry or just do something that’s not computer related.
I even screen-shotted the podcast because I think you would be greatly blessed by listening to it too.
Now I’m not saying that we shouldn’t step outside of our comfort zones. Stepping into recovery is outside of your comfort zone, but I’m saying that you don’t always have to just do it and always push yourself. You shouldn’t compare your stress level to mine, because we just aren’t the same. I’ve learned that I can do a few things well, but I can’t do 100 things well.
Here are some of my tips for you to find the level of stress that you can stand:
1) If you always feel like you’re about to explode or pop with your daily life schedule, look at your schedule and think, ‘Where do I have gifts? Where am I trying to do something where I don’t have gifts?’
2) Who are the most important people to you? Are you spending time with those people? If you aren’t, is there something that you don’t need to be doing you have that free time to be with your people?
3) For me: Do I have time to spend time with the Lord? Do I have time to dig into His Word, pray, think, and just be?
4) Are you doing things because you HAVE to or because you HAVE to make money or are you doing them because you love them?
5) If you’re feeling really overwhelmed by that idea of doing something, it’s okay to say, ‘No.’ Your friends and family will understand, and they will still love you. <3 Most of all, God’s love for me is unconditional, and He knows how weak and frail I am.
I know that stress affected my period, and that was one of the biggest things that Alexis and Robyn emphasized on the podcast. The stress of too much exercise or not enough food really did affect me, and I have to be careful about it, probably for the rest of my life.
The last few months have been months of saying, ‘No’ graciously to things, because I know that I can’t handle them. It’s been a journey of coming to know that I can’t do as much travel or as many high impact workouts and long runs as others can do.
But . . . I’m ready to add a stressor to my life, one that I think will be a positive stressor. I wanted to share with you that I want to train for my 3rd marathon. I’m in one of the healthiest places I’ve been mentally and physically for years, and I’m thankful to have had several periods this year while doing a bit of running.
I have a plan. And I need you all to keep me accountable.
My plan is to run 3-4 days a week, but I can’t exercise my normal 6 days per week. Yes, I do exercise 6 days per week, but they aren’t long like they used to be. I want to learn to be able to say, ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ graciously to the right stressors. The past 6 months have been a journey of learning to rest better, and I know that this has been a huge blessing and aid in my period returning.
If I train for a marathon, I need to be good at resting. That doesn’t mean I can’t spend time being active, but some of the best activities to do with my family can actually be restful like:
Doing Bible Time Together
and anything that doesn’t require a great deal of physical exertion.
One of the bigger stressors in my life has actually been my digestion. I won’t go into TMI, but the mornings are difficult for me. I can’t do really early morning workouts because of that.
However, I’m thankful to report that I’m anticipating, Lord willing, that these digestive morning issues might be resolved after going through the digestive healing protocol with Victoria. I’m so excited about the possibilities. I feel humbled to have been able to find Victoria by God’s sovereign plan and work with her on this very specific issue.
With the return of my period I’ve discovered that my stress point is this: (This is the point where I’m happy and working hard but not feeling like I’m drowning all the time.)
1) 1 Job (wherein I work for my dad)
2) 3-4 Blog Posts a week . . . (sometimes more if I just have something to write about. Yet I’m not forcing it if I don’t have anything to write about.)
3) Mostly doing Instagram for social media. I barely ever go on Twitter or Facebook to do a LOT of sharing.
4) 6 workouts a week that are about 30 minutes – 1 hour. However if I do marathon training, I’m going to cut back on that and do less workouts.
I will let you know how minimizing the amount of workouts and increasing the running mileage goes.
Please pray that I would:
a.) Be Humble to admit if it’s too much.
b.) that the Lord would enable me to have wisdom on how to channel my love for running into smart marathon training. I’m hoping to use Sarah’s guides as she is such a smart, well versed runner who knows a lot about nutrition and running. She recently talked about her training for the Ogden Marathon, and so many of the tips she shared were not things that I took into account training for my first 2 marathons.
c.) That I would’t be cocky or comparing myself to others who can do different amounts of workouts or work than me.
I love running, and I’m so thankful that the Lord has enabled me to keep running. I don’t want to forfeit that by being dumb or proud or self confident about my ability to be an ‘invincible runner.’ God is invincible, but I’m not, so I need to trust in Him and lay down any idols of a perfect body or even always GETTING in a run.
This is going to be a journey. I honestly don’t do running anymore because I want to punish myself or burn ‘x’ amount of calories. I run because I can, because God has given me a body to move and to explore His AMAZING creation that just shouts His glory. I run and nourish myself because I want to take care of my body as the temple of the Holy Spirit.
(Can we stop for a moment and just talk about the incredibleness that is Soom Chocolate Tahini? I was sent 2 jars of their tahini to share and review, and I JUST tried the chocolate tahini yesterday. WOW. WOW. WOW. It’s so rich and chocolatey and smooth. I’m hoping to make a brownie recipe with it to share with y’all.)
I’m not perfect at this, and I often sin and stumble and don’t glorify God like I ought to, and that’s why I need Jesus Christ, my Savior, to enable me to go through this new stage of the journey with God confidence and faith and hope, knowing that there will never be a point when He is not my refuge and strength, my guide, my Leader, my Master, and my King.
In the midst of all of this I want to remember that no matter what I do, what makes me precious and chosen is God’s grace. It’s not me. It’s no credit to me. No amount of or lack thereof of exercise will make me any less loved. And that’s humbling and such a gift that I pray I would be able to keep close. His unconditional love is so incredible you all. <3
‘But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light; Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.’ (1 Peter 2:9-10)
Linking up with Amanda to talk about stress and ‘stress points!’
What’s your stress point? (The point where you are happy and working hard but not always frazzled and exhausted.)
Have you ever had to reduce stressors like exercise in your life to accommodate for other stressors?
Marathon Training: Have you done it? How did you go about it?