Lent Fitness Challenge

March 6, 2016 Admin Body

Today marks the first day of Lent! So happy Ash Wednesday everyone.

So what are you giving up? Because that is the question, right?!

Growing up Catholic and having gone to a Catholic school, this was always the big thing discussed around this time of year. I personally have always had mixed feelings about the whole concept of “giving something up” for Lent because there always seemed to be so much strategy that came with making such a decision. You wanted to give something up that was legitimate, that people would respect, but not so difficult that you were in pure agony for forty+ days. I remember coming up with lists of things I could give up that would be really difficult, but hardly ever did I actually choose that one ominous thing that topped the list; the one that really would have rocked my world. (Second hardest to give up is just as holy, right….?)

Or I would choose one of the really tough options, but I would create stipulations around it. For instance, I used to love pop (that’s soda, for your Southerners).  So one year, I decided to give up dark pop because Dr. Pepper and Cherry Coke were my favorite. However, that still allowed me to enjoy a nice Sprite whenever I wanted. Trickery, huh?!

But my favorite strategy to get through Lent has got to be a “rule” that I actually learned from my Catholic schoolmates, of all people. Apparently I hadn’t read the fine print of Lent, because I was informed that on Sundays you are actually allowed to indulge on your one forbidden item…?!?! I had to laugh when I heard that one. So really you only have to torture yourself for 6 days…on repeat for ~6 weeks.

All joking aside, the purpose of lent is to commit to fasting from certain types of luxuries just as Jesus did in the desert before beginning his public ministry. But I also think Lent is an opportune time to consider all the excess that encompasses our lives and to find ways to realign our priorities, our perspectives, and to make a positive change in our life – and maybe that change is something that you add, not take away.

So, going with that theme, I would like to propose a Fitness Challenge for this Lent period. I think we have all been in a position before where our health and wellbeing has taken a backseat to the multitude of demands life imposes on us. We get busy, we get distracted, and we get stressed. But hopefully this challenge is one small way to break through those pitfalls and add a burst of endorphins and a little “me” time into your demanding day!

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