Y’all, I am SO excited to present a guest post from Alison Yeung at ‘Daily Moves and Grooves.’ In just the short time that I’ve been blogging and reading her blog, I have been blessed by her goofy posts. She also dances in the kitchen (check out her Food Vlog). Her food pictures are drool-worthy. I could go on and on, but hop over there and let it speak for itself!
Today’s guest post from Alison presents a subject that has been such a hard thing for me to balance, and to read her perspective was refreshing and encouraging.
Alison is really fun and joyful. 🙂 I got to meet her in May. It was FANTASMAGORICAL. (I know. That’s not a word.) Yet, it does
describe how amazing it was to make a new friend in Alison and be encouraged my her story and her walk with Jesus.
Exercise is Just the Means to an End
The healthy living blogging community exists for a reason— to promote a balanced life of exercise, nourishment, and overall physical health in order for our bodies to thrive. Moreover, we have bodies for a reason— to do something purposeful or to have a purposeful presence on this earth. Thus, we need exercise and nourishment to allow that. We want to be our fittest selves in order to function well, be confident, and serve others and God to the best of our ability.
That being said, there may come a point when becoming our fittest selves turns into a LIFE goal. It turns into a source of fulfillment, and we end up chasing fitness as the only thing that matters at the end of the day. However, I’ve realized in recent months more than ever that for me, fitness in and of itself is not fulfilling. Rather, my fulfillment is in how fitness allows me to be better and do better in other aspects of my life.
For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be noted as “athletic.” Remember those acrostic poems you would make in elementary school—an adjective for each letter of your name? I always wanted the “A” in my name to stand for athletic.
Towards the end of high school, I wanted to be fit. I would become frustrated with myself because I didn’t get muscle compliments like some of my friends did. I wanted to have a nice body and impressive athletic skills, because throughout my whole life I always felt like a weakling compared to others.
These desires certainly fueled my disordered eating and exercise habits, but I do believe that God brings good out of bad. I have learned to appreciate fitness to move my body and eating healthy foods to fuel it. I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been, and I feel great physically and mentally. I receive compliments/comments from my friends about how fit I am. I’m getting the compliments I always wanted in high school.
Are these compliments flattering? Of course. But just looking fit or being regarded as fit doesn’t fulfill me. There’s some sort of emptiness that cannot be filled by doing 100 burpees in a row, finally balancing in a yoga pose, or eating all my vegetables for the day. Sure, those things can rightfully make a person feel accomplished, proud (the good kind!), energetic, and happy. That’s the point of healthy living— to make us feel like our best selves!
However, as a Christian, I believe that fitness and healthy living are only two of the many vehicles to fulfillment in Christ. Fitness can help us feel happier and more able to do God’s work—the ultimate fulfillment.
I think that new mothers are radiating examples of what I’m trying to say. A new mom’s exercise, healthy eating, and strength is all for the sake of raising a healthy child— a child who can thrive and do God’s work as well. The fitness of a new mom is not just about her happiness, but it’s about someone else’s.There is a greater purpose.
Don’t get me wrong, fitness goals are wonderful and good! Reaching those fitness goals is awesome. I have just realized that reaching fitness goals does not fulfill me. They are earthly goals that can help me serve God and others. In that service— whether it be volunteer work, helping my parents do chores around the house, chasing around my baby cousins, or caring for my own children one day— I am fulfilled.
Now I have some questions for the readers (This is Emily).
Why do you exercise?
What are some of your fitness goals? How are those helping you to reach other goals?