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 :-)