Exercise. We all know that we need it. Sometimes we may enjoy it, but other times it is just another to-do list item to hang over our heads. There was a workout routine that I used to do. It was certainly not something I wanted to go do just for the fun of it. The workout was tiring to me and involved a lot of moves and positions that you don’t just naturally enjoy getting into. But, the benefits were worth the effort. So what are the benefits of exercise for our health? Let’s look at exercising and taking care of our health through the eyes of the Proverbs 31 woman in Proverbs 31:17.
She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
1. How Did the Proverbs 31 Woman View Exercise in Proverbs 31:17?
In Proverbs 31:17, we see that she girded her loins with strength and strengthened her arms. The Proverbs 31 woman did what she could to make herself strong and ready for whatever tasks God had for her. This would apply to more than just exercise. To be strong and healthy we need to exercise, but we also need to have plenty of time to rest as well. As with everything in life, there must be a balance. The Proverbs woman finds this balance. She also has the right perspective on exercise.
What is the right perspective on exercise? Exercise should be viewed as more than just an item that needs to be checked off our list. If we view it that way, we may miss out on its importance. Instead of just thinking about the exercise, focus on the results and the reasons why it is important to exercise and take care of ourselves. Focus on the benefits of exercise for your health.
2. Why Is Exercise So Important?
This is a good question. To a certain extent, we all know the answer. Exercise is important because it is beneficial to our health, right? But there is more to it. Why do we want and need to be as healthy as possible?
Our health is not the end-all, and I’m very thankful for that, aren’t you? No matter what we do to take care of ourselves, physical ailments come to us all in shape or form. But what is important is that we do what we can to improve our health so that we are able to do all the Lord calls us to.
What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
This passage is specifically speaking of sin that can be committed with the body. But, I believe it can also have a broader application. Since your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, you should take care of it. You should also take care of yourself so that you will have the energy and strength to obey the Lord and work for Him.
3. What If I Am Not Able to Exercise?
I think that it’s easy for us to have a misconception of exercise. Exercising does not have to involve running a marathon or going through a whole workout routine. Earlier I mentioned the exercise routine that I used to do. It just so happens that I am not physically able to do that routine right now, but there are things I can do. Just because you can’t do as much as you would like to, don’t let that keep you from doing what you can.
Right now, my exercise is sitting down at the piano and playing for a few minutes each day. It helps with posture and core strength. Some days I also go for a very short walk. For you, your exercise could be walking around the house, getting dressed, going for a short walk, or any other number of small activities. You don’t have to exert yourself strenuously to experience some of the benefits of exercise for your health.
Health issues aren’t the only hindrance to exercising. You may be telling yourself that you would exercise more if you only had the time. Instead of waiting until you have enough time to do a full workout, how about starting with a very simple routine and doing it consistently? You will probably accomplish more that way in the long run.
4. What Are Simple Ways to Exercise?
I mentioned a few simple exercises, but if you are pretty healthy, some of those might be a bit basic. My favorite way to exercise would probably have to be walking. It’s something that can easily be added to your routine and doesn’t have to take a long time. A 20-minute walk can cover about a mile pretty easily. Now running, that just doesn’t “run” in my family. However, I used to enjoy jog-running in short spurts (especially on downhill stretches) on my walks. This is a great way to exert yourself a little more if you are up to it.
Some people do enjoy running, and you may be one of those. There are so many exercise options such as lifting weights (strengthening your arms as Proverbs 31:17 says), sit-ups, wall sits, bicycling, and jumping jacks. You probably can think of other exercise options, so feel free to add to this list!
5. How Can I Create a Consistent Exercise Routine?
One of the hardest things about exercising is developing consistency. It can be pretty easy to get all excited and think that you will develop an amazing workout routine that you will always stick to. But after the excitement wears off, you may not want to do it and find that your exercise fizzles out. Let me offer a few simple tips that can make a big difference and help you exercise regularly so that you can experience the benefits of exercise for your health.
- Pray and ask the Lord what He would have you to do and for the grace and strength to do it.
- Start small. Begin an easy routine and then add to it once you are doing it consistently.
- Choose a routine that fits your capabilities and season of life. Just because someone else is doing it doesn’t mean it is best for you.
- Don’t try to change any other habits at the same time. Stick to just one small change and learn it before trying something else.
- Habit stack. Choose an activity that you already do and then plan to exercise before or after that activity.
- If possible, find someone to exercise with sometimes. Good company can make a chore turn into something enjoyable.
- Try a fun exercise! Do you enjoy walking? Then walk! Even if your whole routine can’t be fun, make sure at least part of it is.
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- There are many benefits of exercise for your health. The biggest one is that you are taking care of the temple of the Lord and preparing yourself to be ready to serve Jesus!! Look at the big picture of why you are exercising and use that as inspiration. Seek the Lord’s strength in being prepared for all that He has for you.
- Choose an exercise routine to match your capabilities. It might need to be short and easy. That’s okay. It’s still beneficial and is much better than doing nothing. If you do it every day, you may be surprised at the results. If you can’t do it every day, do it as often as you can!
- Make it fun! Try to choose activities that you enjoy and will look forward to doing. This is one of the best ways to become consistent at it.
What is your favorite way to exercise? Do you have any other tips and tricks for being consistent at exercising? Do you have any thoughts on having the right mindset of exercising to please the Lord or our theme verse from this post (Proverbs 31:17)?
Until next time, find an exercise you love and add it to your routine!