The beginning of each year is a great time to evaluate how you are doing in life, and it is also a great time to think of the things you want to change. There are many people who want to work out, lose the extra pounds and get in shape, but for whatever reason, it doesn’t happen. People can start out with good intentions, but oftentimes, there needs to be an outside element involved so we can be more consistent in our endeavors. We need an accountability partner.
Jump to the last paragraph now if you don’t want all my personal musings, and just want the conclusion
Now I do have a few, just a FEW, friends who actually like exercising alone. Amazing! I just don’t understand this. They even LOVE the dreadmill, I mean the treadmill. I wish I was one of them. I used to run alone all the time, but no more. That was when I was in college and had more “time to myself.” After I got married in 1999, I took a year off of running as I was adjusting to married life and working full-time as a choir teacher. This was not on purpose that I took the time off of exercising, but Jonathan was working a weird schedule at Eagle Hardware and Garden and he didn’t like running, and I was just too tired when I got home after working a long day (or I thought I was too tired).
I did start to exercise more consistently that second year of marriage, but what really got me going was a lady named Merri. I barely knew her, but she saw me running to church choir one night and asked me to go running with her. Both she and I worked really well together. We ended up consistently running for over 6 years, every week running AT LEAST three times together, but often up to five times a week. And if you can believe this, in those six + years we only had to cancel because of weather MAYBE a handful of times (it drizzles in Washington most of the time; we don’t know what real rain is. Plus it never rains all day. There is always at least one window of try time during those wet times.). Anyway, Merri became more than a great friend; she became a mother figure I needed since my mom had died of breast cancer in 1998. I loved bouncing all sorts of ideas off of Merri. We only stopped running together because she moved away July 2007 (enter tears, miss you Merri).
That July as I was telling my sob story of missing my running partner to my neighbor, Alicia, she said she would be my running partner. AWESOME! My gloom turned to JOY! Someone to be faithful with again. I still missed Merri, and I still do tremendously, but it gave me an opportunity to get to know someone else. Well, Alicia’s husband is in the Navy, and I knew we would only be able to workout together for 1 year. I was really thankful for the year, though!!! And it was great getting to know a neighbor who was also a young mom (miss you Alicia).
I was SOOO SAD to see my two consistent partners move away, but the blessing in this was that I got to be consistent with a variety of people, since I started asking people to go with me. I have committed to meet with different people Monday through Thursday. It’s great in the fact that I get to know more people that way, and we get to be in each other’s lives more. It’s literally and figuratively life on life active discipleship. I have also incorporated walking and working out with kettlebells into my week.
All this to say, most of you will find much more success in keeping your fitness goals if you have a consistent exercise partner. I HIGHLY encourage you to find one to three people that you can partner with and exercise. Make a date, and get it in your calendar…consistently. If you have kids, get a stroller and bring them along. Last week my friend Carin and I walked and brought a kettlebell to the park to use while the kids played. Honestly, if I don’t have an exercise date, it rarely happens for me, so I make sure to have a date. I just hate to break a date. Happy moving!
Do you need workout ideas? Go here.