Saturday, December 22, 2012

Caring for your temple

Several years ago I started running.  It all began sort of by accident.  I have never been a runner; I played volleyball in high school.  I tried joining the track team one season but my chest burned so badly I wasn't very good.  I had a touch of asthma.  I played basketball and soccer too but mostly I sat the bench.  I was tall so I’d play center in basketball, I’d jump start the game and that was about it.  In soccer I played goalie so my running was minimal. That was on purpose.  I'm not very aggressive but I liked the camaraderie.  Nobody would remember me as a standout at all but it was a lot of fun.  

My running is actually a blend of jogging and walking - which I affectionately call "wogging".  When I can't breathe I walk, otherwise I jog.  Many can walk the pace of my jog but I'm not out for goal setting, only to finish the distance I set.  So how I got back into running was sort of interesting.
Jeremy was a middle and high school runner.  He ran long distance as well as indoor and outdoor track. Chris played football.  Both had long practices when they were younger and neither could drive so they needed to be picked up.  They never got out on time.  I'd sit in my car and wait and be annoyed at the coaches.  I'm sure there are plenty of parents who do the same.  Drove me nuts because there were so many other things to do and sitting there felt like a waste of time.  Sometimes I'd bring a book, talk on the phone or I'd close my eyes and nap.  I used to go to Jeremy's track meets and sit in the stands and watch or I'd stand along the fence.  At Christopher's practices I'd sometimes do the same but mostly I stewed in the car knowing there was still dinner to make and homework for them, lunches to make, clothes to wash...

It dawned on me one day, why I don’t know - that maybe I might try taking a lap around the track rather than sit in the car or stand by the fence.  I started bringing my running shoes.  That grew into longer spans on the pavement around my neighborhood which then turned into signing up for 5K runs for charities in the Capital District.

I ran several with Jeremy and Chris but they always blew me away.  I finished each one however.  I even ran my first half marathon in 2011.  Although I did not “wog” that one, I actually ran the entire 13.1 miles.  I think I’m still paying for that today.  Still can't believe it!  Check that one off my bucket list!
So the wogging got me thinking about my health.  I was feeling good about the physical activity but my diet was nothing to brag about. I started playing a little game with myself... someone said if you drink water it takes your hunger pains away so I bought a 32 ounce travel bottle and made myself drink it in the car on the way to work.  No coffee till the water bottle was empty.  I love my morning coffee!  I really tried and I succeeded.   It was a bother and I’d get pissy but I told myself I only had to do it five days a week and I could  take the weekends off.  I guess I wanted to reward myself?????  I have no idea.  I just knew if I compromised I would have a better shot at succeeding.  But why for God sake would I argue with myself over water? Isn't it good? Cleansing? Healthy?

It worked.  I got used to it and it became a habit.  I still do it.  Well I did until I stopped going to the office regularly this month.  I'll get back to it though.  It's a great habit for someone like me that prefers coffee or tea.  I know eventually I'll get my caffeine fix.

So, about the temple I referred to in my title, the temple is you... It's your body, actions, thoughts and deeds.  What I came to realize once I started wogging and drinking water was that I felt better.  I started to eat better.  I felt clearer and happier.  I probably washed out a bunch of toxins.  So, I gave myself a second challenge, regarding bread...  I love bread, especially when it's toasted with peanut butter on it, any kind of bread.  I could eat it for any meal, any day of the week.  I challenged myself to only have it once a day.  If I had toast for breakfast then too bad, no bread for lunch or dinner.  I lost some decent weight! 

You know how on a plane the safety instructions say put your mask on first then help the ones around you?  Same concept with your temple.  Take care of your body, thoughts and actions so you can better assist the ones around you, be it your kids, parents, siblings, friends, co-workers or strangers.

I thought I felt pretty good and took fairly decent care of my temple, especially these past five or six years since I hit the track in my running shoes.  Well, my temple needs help now that I've seen the goodness of people since Christopher passed on December 1st.  So many, many people put their mask on first and then reached out to my family. Those are people who care about their temple!  I want to be one of them :-). I'm going to try harder.  I can never explain it to you because I've never been in a dire situation before.  We've all heard about this kind of thing but I am now among those who have truly witnessed it.  

So, whether or not this post came out clearly, I guess all I want to say is that I've come to realize that priorities matter.  I thought I had them right but I'm reorganizing some of mine now that I see the preciousness of each day and the goodness in people's hearts.  I want to care for my temple so I can best help the ones around me. I'm going to be kinder and more considerate and I'm going to get involved rather than be a bystander. You have no idea the value of it to the one in need.  

Thank you for reading and enjoy your day :-)


  1. I think you have a wonderful "temple". You are helping so many people everyday by letting us read your blogs. I read them every morning before I start my day and I take away feeling so good about the day. So thank you for helping us and I am so sorry about your loss.

  2. I was about to write and then looked at Susan's comment above mine and it sounded exactly like what I was about to say. You are truly helping me every day! I feel like it's my daily devotion to read your blog. I love to read Max Lucado's Our Daily Bread and as the day goes on, see how amazingly it applies. This happens with your blog as well. Thank you for doing this and I love seeing all the wonderful pictures! You're in my prayers.

  3. I know exactly what you mean!! I too wait, sometimes for long periods, for my son to get out of football practice. I too started what you call wogging. I haven't been exactly strict with it. Your posts are very encouraging and inspiring. Thank you for that!!
    I'll start being more strict with my jogging. And I'll start trying to eat better (that's a difficult task at this time for some reason).
    God Bless!

  4. I wake up each day a little bit earlier than usual, while the house is still quiet and no one to disturb me. The first thing I do is read your blog. I love what you write, so inspirational and motivating. I think you are an amazing woman with such strength and wisdom. I learn a little something each and everyday. Although my heart is still so heavy over your loss, seeing your pictures and your posts brings a smile to my face. I know that your blog is helping alot of people and for that I am truly thankful. Always in my thoughts and in my prayers.

  5. I am definitely going to try the water trick...thanks!

  6. Your post came out perfectly clear today. You are exactly right about how caring for your own "temple" is key in helping you care for those around you. Over the past year, I too have been "wogging", making a conscience effort to carry a water bottle around with me, and sadly (because I love it too) watching my bread intake. All these things combined do make you feel better. It gives you more energy, more strength, a clearer mind, all the things that are necessary when caring for others. You are a very wise woman Regina and through this blog, admired by so many. Stay strong and peace be with you.

  7. Thanks for your post! From one wogger to another:)

  8. Almost panicked when I signed on to FB today and didn't see your blog....of course it was there but I was busy looking at the picture. :) Thank you for sharing. :)

  9. Hi, Today's blog hit home again. I started treating myself better in 2/2012 when I joined Weight Watchers online and at this point have lost 40 pounds, after learning to fill up in the morning on water and around 3 pm when I would crave a snack and also hit the recumbent bike I have. My knees are bad so I peddle. Christmas cookies and sweets are my biggest challenge this last week. I have started my WW diary again and my water routine. I feel better,have more energy and can handle stress better overall. So yes I have learned a lesson this year, treat your body like a temple and it will treat you well too. I need to work on reaching out to help people, so that will be the new resolution. God Bless you Ms. Regina. Martha

  10. Thank you for your blog.i have been taking care of my mom who has cancer and have forgotten to take care of my temple.i have always put others first it's time I came first

  11. Regina,

    Once again, I can totally relate. I remember when my kids started playing football at Shaker and they kept missing the last late bus. Then they'd be calling me for a ride home. Mean while, I'd have gotten home from work and would oh so nicely be relaxing poolside with my book. I used to get so annoyed at having to drive to the other side of Latham in rush hour traffic to pick them up. I'd be grumbling to them about what didn't their coaches understand about the late bus being at 5PM not 5:10! Drove me crazy! And the worst part was it would be so hot and those teenage boys stunk to the high heavens!! I finally gave in and just drove there to pick them at 5:15! They never came out on time so I always had a good book with me!

    My whole family tries to eat healthier and exercise. Sometimes successfully, sometimes not. Health issues unfortunately hinder my exercising but hopefully soon I can get back to it. Drinking water is something I've done for years. I love adding a slice of fresh lemon to it! I love your attitude about taking care of your "temple". I know I need to do a better job and plan on starting to do so. Thanks for your writings and helping me to see things more clearly! You are awesome!!

  12. It always surprises me when you have something that I can relate to almost perfectly. Today's blog is no different in that respect. My friend, years ago, walked around talking about "the temple" - his body when he was working out and being super intense about the way he ate. This went on for a whole summer and we laughed at him/with him a lot. We had a good laugh about it this past summer at a friend's wedding. He inspired me to get on the weight watchers/healthy eating wagon. 11 months and 47 pounds later I was at my best. Then my son had his injury and everything went downhill from there. Now with a compromised spine I'm at my worst...

    This was a good reminder for me that I need to do what you were talking about and be at my best for my family. The reminder is there with every ache, every pain (fibromyalgia and spine issues) and when I look in the mirror, but it was nice to see it put this way!

    Thank you Regina...

    Again you are in my thoughts and prayers.

  13. Nicely written blog. I think you and many of your reader, including myself, are kindred spirits that are now bonded and able to share ourselves with one another. I am with you on the "taking care of my temple" lifestyle. For many years I put my kids first, now I put myself first and it has made me happier and stronger. I believe I am a better mom and role model for my children as well. Thank you for reminding me to take care of my temple.