It is all about the journey….

Chinese_Symbol_-_StrengthI am not a gym rat, but I truly love a good gut wrenching, sweat inducing, pain causing workout. My preferred workouts are done in the solitary confines of my living room with my good friends Shaun T and Tony Horton. Insanity and P90X2 have brought more moments of pushing through, near barfing and painful strengthening than anything else I have found…for me. I have fallen in love with interval training and muscle confusion, because that is how life goes for me (a little bit of intervals and a lot of confusion).

So as I workout with my peeps (the people on the videos), I notice that they are definitely younger than I am. Most of the time I look at them and think that they are stronger than I am. That gets pretty frustrating as I am pushing through a particularly challenging set for me and they are continuing on like it is nothing. I have also found that no matter how many times I have done a pkarticular workout, the never get any easier. It could feel like I am not gaining any strength, endurance or speed.

Push-ups are my nemesis. There is something about them that my body screams, “REALLY!?! You want me to do what?!?!” Yet, I push on because they are an amazing exercise (plus in order for me to get my black belt later this year I need to be able to do a fair amount of them). I have moments when I just want to throw my shoe at the awesome people working out with me (another reason I work out at home…throwing shoes in a gym is quite frowned upon). I have decided I will overcome my nemesis.

Here is the lesson I have learned with all of this… I may not be able to pound out push-ups all day, BUT I can do other things that make me feel good. I found that I have my strengths and they are not the same strengths as ‘my peeps’. I am strong in ways that are what I need for my life…karate, keeping up with my husband & kids and building things.

This lesson has been valuable in all aspects of my life. Take karate for example. Our entire family is involved with it (which is fantastic). My husband, daughter and son are incredible with their nunchaku (I have yet to learn the art without maiming myself) and sais. I am a staff and sword kind of girl. My daughter has amazing ferocity and can remember her self-defense and forms. My husband is a powerhouse. My son is fantastic with forms. Me? I am the kicker in the family. We all have our strengths and that is what makes it amazing.

Over all life applications come each day when we walk out the door. I hate to think it is natural to compare ourselves with each other, but sometimes it feels that way. It is easy to look at someone else and say to ourselves, “they are so much better than I am at…” HOWEVER…we were not made to be like each other. Heavenly Father gave each of us strengths that are uniquely ours. They can be physical, mental, or spiritual, but they are just ours. Once we decided that our strengths are are own, we free ourselves from all of that negative thinking. The focus on our strengths is not a prideful thing, it is a recognition of the gifts we have received from our Heavenly Father for the bettering of ourselves and those around us.

My strengths are mine. Yours are yours. Embrace what He has given you and allow yourself to be taught by the strengths of others. It is a life that is beautiful!

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