Have you ever watched a gymnast practice on a balance beam? You’ll notice how they gently waver back and forth when attempting to maintain their equilibrium. If they falter they quickly find their counterbalance and eventually complete their program. They have a goal and they are determined to reach it!
Each gymnast strives for excellence. They realize that mistakes, falls and set-backs are inevitable, but also a part of growth. When they stumble, they dig deep, determined to get back on that beam and continue onward toward their personal ambitions. Their coach is always nearby to train and exhort them onward. They never quit simply because they made a mistake.
It’s not an instant reward but a long steady journey. Dominique Dawes, Shannon Miller and Gabby Douglas didn’t win Olympic medals overnight. It took time and a lot of practice to become proficient in their discipline.
Similarly, in our Christian life, we wouldn’t think of turning our back on our Christian lifestyle simply because we made a mistake. Rather we should “press on toward the mark . . . ” (Phil. 3:14) God, the Ultimate Lifestyle Coach, is forgiving and extremely patient with us. He is our Encourager, motivating us onward toward our best, and yet gently reprimanding us if we tend to not listen to His counsel.
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” (Colossians 3:23)
In a similar respect, when striving for a healthier lifestyle, our goal should always be to become our best self whatever that happens to be. Our goals are not anyone else’s goals. Ask yourself; Am I my best self?
Most will never become a world-class Olympian but we can certainly aspire to excel. And if we “fall off the beam,” we don’t quit but learn from our errors and trudge on. However, how often when discouragement sets in or if accomplishing a healthier lifestyle is a struggle, do we give up and decide to quit? Too many times!
Life itself is a balance beam of good days and . . . not so much. So is a typical daily diet. Humans were not meant to consume only certain types of whole foods. Balance your diet plan with many different types of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and herbs. Vary your protein intake with a variety of lean meats. But if you consume a fattier meal one day, so what? Get right back on the ” better selections balance beam” and continue to eat more disciplined the next day.
When discouraged, or if you reach a plateau in your weight quest, and can’t seem to lose those last few pounds, always consider your basics: are you eating the right amount of healthy foods, are you using smaller plates, exercising, drinking enough water? Is your routine becoming boring? Perhaps you need more stimulation. Change it up. Consume different foods or create a variety of ways to exercise. Life shouldn’t be boring. Continue to strive for excellence!
“Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,” (Philippians 3:13)