Motivation to Exercise

Today’s verse:  3 John 1:2  “Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul.”

We all know that in order to lose weight, we need to cut the calories that go into our bodies. The other half of the equation is to expend more calories than we take in. This is achieved by exercising. For some people, like my sister, just the word “exercise” makes them break out in hives. exerciseMany people think of exercise as pumping iron, or Crossfit style workouts, which will make you puke. But it doesn’t have to be so hard.   The trick is to find something that you enjoy and make it work for you.

In a world where we are living so unhealthily, exercising can help us to focus on ourselves and our health. It can be a powerful incentive to quit smoking, or not to start again.  It can help us to focus our minds so that we are not thinking about our next high, or our next low.  We can see results so we don’t want to ruin it by stuffing our face full of unhealthy, fattening foods.

In 1996, the U.S. Surgeon General’s report of Physical Activity and Health stated that by becoming more active, we can lower the risk of death, and slow development of chronic illnesses such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. This report is old, but the principles remain the same. The best part is that you don’t have to join a gym and work out so hard. Even moderate activity for 30 minutes a day is a bonus. And the 30 minutes can be broken up into smaller amounts of 10-15 minutes at a time.  Who can’t handle 10 minutes, 3 times a day of something that is fun?

So what activities are beneficial? Anything that makes you move: walking is best, but it can be dancing, gardening, raking leaves, going up and down stairs, swimming or water aerobics. Obviously the more you do, the better the benefits. But everyone has to start somewhere.  And I guarantee you that once you start seeing the benefits, you will be motivated to keep going and maybe even do more.

Another benefit to exercise is that it gives us time to pray, to commune with God. How can we not appreciate God when we are out for a walk and see His creation in all its glory?  How can we not thank Him for the magnificent way our bodies work?   We can spend 10 or 15 minutes praying for others that need His comfort and strength, His healing hand.  Sometimes we get so busy in our day that we have trouble finding time to set aside for God.  But during exercise, you can do it.  So reap the benefits of exercise and start living a healthy, prayerful life!   Blessings to all as you huff and puff your way to health!

Healthy Living Recipe

We continue today with another healthy salad recipe from the National Museum of the American Indian. This is a beautiful, colorful and filling salad – enjoy!

Black Bean and Roasted Corn Salad

Ingredients:

6 ears corn, husked or 3 cups frozen corn, thawed
2 cups cooked black beans, drained or canned black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup diced yellow bell pepper
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp. seeded and minced jalapeño chile
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground coriander
3 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
3 Tbsp. corn or canola oil
Salt to taste

Preheat oven to 350° F.  If using fresh corn, place the ears directly on the oven rack.  If using frozen corn, spread the thawed kernels on a rimmed baking sheet and pat dry with paper towels.  Roast for  8 to 10 minutes, or until beginning to color.  Remove from the oven and let cool to the touch.  Cut the kernels from the corncobs.  Transfer the corn to a large bowl.  Add the beans, bell peppers, garlic, cilantro, jalapeño, cumin, and coriander and toss to coat.  Add the lime juice and the oil and toss again. Season with salt.  Serve at room temperature, or cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 2 days.

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