By Alex Zoloty
I love going to the gym. There is something about the way I feel when I’m drenched in sweat, blasting music in my headphones and feeling my heart pound inside my chest. I feel like I can do anything, and I’m in awe of what this body that God has blessed me with can do. I feel alive. But
there was a time when I looked into the mirror and saw a litany of what I was not.
The pictures that flooded my Instagram feed and Pinterest boards flashed through my head, and I was constantly reminded of how I was not like the fitness models or athletes that bombard my iPhone screen everyday. As the endorphins would dwindle after each workout, I examined my body in the mirror.
Then that voice began to creep in
telling me everything that I wasn’t and listing everything that I didn’t have in order to get the physique that I wanted.
The voice reminded me of all the days I missed going to the gym and of how many hours the people on the internet had put in to get their perfect body.
I started to believe that I didn’t have enough of what it takes
and then eventually all of the excitement and fun of exercising diminished until I just quit. The less time I went to the gym, the more time I spent on social media looking at fitness pages. And the more I would look at those pages, the worse I would feel about myself.
Around the same time that all of this was going on, I went to a Catholic youth ministry conference with the youth group volunteers at my church, where the priest was giving a reflection on 1 Kings 17.
In the passage Elijah visits a widow
and asks her to make him some food, but she doesn’t even have enough for herself and her son. He assures her that she will have enough, and eventually she goes and makes him a meal. In the end, the jar of flour didn’t empty and the jug of oil didn’t run dry. The Lord took what the widow had and provided an abundance. He is a God of evermore.
I couldn’t help but relate this passage to what I had been feeling about my fitness. There I was feeling like the widow. Feeling like I didn’t have enough. I didn’t have enough muscle on my bones or stamina in my lungs to achieve the fitness goals I had in mind. I didn’t have enough time in the day to put the hours in at the gym. I didn’t have enough confidence in myself to continue to pursue my goals.
But unlike the widow, I had lost faith.
Despite her doubts, the widow trusted in Elijah and was rewarded. Instead of trusting in my coaches and in my training, I succumbed to the lies of the voice of the enemy in my head telling me that I wasn’t enough and gave up.
I wish I could say that after learning this lesson, I no longer have days when I don’t feel like going into the gym or that I don’t find myself comparing my body to female super athletes and bodybuilders
but I wouldn’t be telling the truth.
I have to remind myself daily that I am capable of amazing things if I trust the process and stay diligent with my training. With faith in what God has given me, I will always have enough.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Alex is a pharmacist by day and a volunteer with a high school youth ministry program by night. Besides scrolling through pictures of French bulldogs on Instagram, she enjoys singing, making crafts from Pinterest, going to the gym and learning about the saints. She is passionate about helping others, her faith and her family, and she cannot wait to enter into the sacrament of marriage on October 1, 2016.