Oh Exercise! How I Love Thee–Sometimes

By July 23, 2014HelloMornings Challenge

Why is it that even though I know how important exercise is and how much I need it and how good it makes me feel when I actually get out there and DO it, I’m constantly in a battle to make it a regular part of my life?


I wish I could share with you today all about how I’ve created regular space in my days to add in the “Move” aspect of the HelloMornings theme: “God, Plan, Move.”

I can’t.

Don’t get me wrong, I really do enjoy exercising! When I’ve managed to keep consistent with it for a few weeks at a time, I understand and feel all the beneficial effects. But I struggle with the discipline of it.

The apostle Paul understood this struggle:

I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.

I have discovered this principle of life–that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong.

I love God’s law with all my heart.

But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am!

Romans 7:19-24a (NLT)

Discipline, in any area of our lives, is a spiritual issue.

And spiritual issues need to be handled with spiritual tools: Scripture, prayer, accountability. I’m pretty sure this is not news to anyone, maybe just a reminder for those who, like me, struggle with the discipline aspect of exercising.

Just knowing in our head that keeping healthy and fit is important, or even experientially understanding the benefits of exercise, may not be enough to keep us motivated to stay consistent. Sometimes it simply comes down to fighting the spiritual battle of discipline in our heart.

The great thing about all this? We don’t have to do it on our own!

Paul confidently states in the last part of the passage in Romans 7:

Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Have you ever considered exercise to be a spiritual battle? What are some practical methods that you’ve used for fighting that battle?I am the wife of an Army Chaplain

LisaWalters   I am an Army Chaplains wife, a homeschooling mom of two teen girls. I am an editor. I overindulge in dark chocolate and love Jesus. My      spiritual journey has been one of ups and downs, joys and heartaches, times of growth and times of questioning. At this stage in my life, my    consistent prayer is for wisdom in knowing how to parent teen girls!


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  • Avatar Brittany says:

    I love this. I was having dinner with a good friend of mine last week and we talked about different life struggles and for each she said “you know what? You don’t have to know all the answers, you won’t always feel like doing the things you know you need to do or should do. All you have to do is trust that God can help you with anything if you just ask. Trust in him. Say ‘God, I don’t know the answer to this question but you do, show me what I need to see’ you will be surprised how much God will show you.” The best part about it is that she was right! It’s as simple as asking and believing.

  • Avatar Cindy says:

    Great post! That used to be my struggle. When I made it part of my day – scheduled exercise on my calendar like an appointment – That’s when I was able to stick with it. Just like meal planning, I would look at the gym schedule for the week and highlight the classes I wanted to take, then mark it on my calendar so I didn’t overbook myself. Now it’s part of our routine.

  • Avatar Kate says:

    We make exercise a family affair & part of our daily routine. My husband is able to be home by 4pm (he goes in super early), and going on a 3-4 mile walk with our dog and toddler (in the stroller) is just what we do. Sometimes its a bike ride, sometimes it doesn’t happen, but it’s the default & I’m so grateful for it!

    • Avatar Lisa Walters says:

      It really is much nicer to exercise with others, isn’t it?! I’m so glad you and your family have found a consistent way to get out there!

  • Avatar Tanya says:

    Great insight. As an avid runner (regularly running half marathons and having run two full marathons), ladies often ask about how to stay consistent with exercise. I can add this bit of wisdom about treating it as a spiritual battle to my arsenal of answers and encouragement I try to give them. Thanks for a great blog.