Why I Haven’t Been Writing Lately
My last published blog post was over 7 months ago. Prior to that, I had published every month, usually more than once per month, for the previous 6 years. Why the sudden scaling back?
The main reason is that I have been focusing more on my health. I was fortunate to be born as a natural athlete and enjoyed sports up until age 19. At that time, life changed. I was out of high school, working, doing school full-time, in a long-term relationship that resulted in marriage and a bunch of kids pretty quickly. For a 10+ year stretch I virtually stopped doing most physical activities I used to enjoy out of sheer business from my stage of life. And because I have decent genetics, it seemed like no big deal. I ate whatever I wanted, didn’t exercise (except to play frisbee or dodgeball with the youth groups), and that worked out fine.
Well, turns out, it wasn’t really working out fine. I realized one day that my poor lifestyle was starting to catch up with me. I had put on 25 pounds since my wedding day, felt lousy, had regular back pain, and discovered through an asthma test that my lung function was terrible. I hadn’t medicated for asthma in years, and I thought I was doing ok. Turns out I had just gotten used to being short of breath and didn’t even notice it anymore.
It really hit me one day when a friend at church jokingly and without ill-intention said, “you’re starting to get a muffin top there, aren’t ya?” I laughed it off, but I was embarrassed. I knew that I was a bit out of shape, but I didn’t think it was really showing. It was then that I decided I had to actually start making some changes. If I just kept going the way I was, I would end up being a big, fat pastor who couldn’t play outside with his kids. Not to mention that my family has a history of heart attack and stroke, so even more serious health issues could be a concern.
For the last while, I have been dedicating myself more to taking care of my health. I started by making a few small changes in my eating habits: drinking diet Pepsi instead of regular (a sacrifice for me), and eating scrambled eggs and oatmeal for breakfast instead of Lucky Charms or Frosted Flakes. I also signed up for a gym membership and started going three times a week. Getting to the gym has been the hardest part of this process. As a busy husband, father, and pastor, it is hard to find a “convenient” time to make it happen. As a result, I’ve been working out mostly late in the evening (9pm) or early in the day (5:30am). But as I have developed the discipline to keep at it, the results are showing.
I feel better than I have in years. My asthma is improved, and I’ve been taking a regular puffer which has made a world of difference. My back never hurts anymore. I lost the 25 pounds, then started to gain it back mostly in muscle. I feel good, look better, and have my confidence back. Honestly, working out is now one of the highlights of my day and eating healthier is getting easier. If I’m going to put in all that work in the gym, I don’t want to ruin it by putting garbage back in my body.
I do a little bit of cardio, but I have fallen in love with weightlifting. I’m hoping to eventually sign up for a powerlifting competition when the time is right and my numbers are respectable enough to do so. It’s been a welcome break to the routine of life that I had been living. While I love to write and still do, it never really gave me a mental break from the ministry work I was already engulfed in. Lifting has allowed me to have a true hobby apart from ministry work, and I’m better off for it.
I do plan to resume writing a bit more and not ignore it completely. However, I will probably not resume the pace that I was doing before for the reasons outlined above. Thank you to everyone who reads this blog. I hope that I have been an encouragement to your faith and can be so moving forward as well. Just don’t forget to take care of yourself too!