As you may know, not only am I a Beach Body coach who fully believes that by physically being the best you, you help all of you be the best you yet……I am also a Christian. I believe in Christ. I believe that my spiritual well-being rests on Him and His Grace. So, as a Christian, how can I devote all this time and effort and passion to Beach Body and physical training? How do I bridge faith and fitness?
I grew up going to Bible study with my mom and her small tight-knit group where we gathered for food and fellowship in each other’s homes. They focused a lot on the exact translation of the original Hebrew text, and honestly a lot of it was over my head and lost on me. We didn’t celebrate Easter, Christmas, Halloween, or St. Patrick’s Day because they were believed to be pagan holidays. When I left for college, I started attending a Presbyterian church and fell in love. After college, however, I was in a black hole with my beliefs for about 6 years. I didn’t go to church, I didn’t talk to God, I felt lost and confused and didn’t put Him first because I felt like I was a lost cause. Then, in 2015, I began going to counseling for some personal self-confidence issues. I had the most amazing counselor and I didn’t know this when I made the appointment, but she was also a Christian counselor. Her name was April and she brought me back to God. I am forever thankful for her help and guidance in helping to love myself, realize that I am good enough for God, and to turn my mess into a message to inspire others. I try to incorporate faith and fitness whenever
Then, in 2015, I began going to counseling for some personal self-confidence issues. I had the most amazing counselor and I didn’t know this when I made the appointment, but she was also a Christian counselor. Her name was April and she brought me back to God. I am forever thankful for her help and guidance in helping to love myself, realize that I am good enough for God, and to turn my mess into a message to inspire others. I try to incorporate faith and fitness whenever possible, because they have so much in common! They help ease my stress, they help me realize I can do anything, one day and step at a time, and that I am part of something bigger in this life.
Did you actually know there have been studies done to prove that there actually is a correlation between spiritual and physical health? It is actually very easy to incorporate faith and fitness!
Did you know your physical health affects your spiritual health? And vice versa? #faithandfitness Click To Tweet
Benefits of Fitness
The benefits of fitness are more than just for your physical well-being. There are many mental and emotional benefits as well.
When you practice fitness, your blood pressure goes down, endorphins are released, and you physically end up feeling better, less stressed, and happier. You begin to have more self-love and acceptance. More identity and security.
According to Experience Life’s website:
Science is now legitimizing what people have known for thousands of years: We are more than our bodies, and true health is attending to all parts of our being — including our spirit,” says psychologist Michelle Pearce, PhD, of the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
One reason spirituality may be so closely linked to good health is that it’s a powerful source of intrinsic motivation, which many psychologists believe is uniquely effective in helping people adopt and maintain healthy habits.
“Intrinsic motivation means you’re motivated by an internal desire to participate in an activity for its own sake,” explains executive coach Kate Larsen, MCC, CWC, author of Progress Not Perfection, “because it gives you a sense of meaning, autonomy, and pride.”
So, by being healthy, not only are we taking care of our body’s health, but also our spiritual health. And after all, we are the Children of God. Since we will physically feel better, we will be able to focus on spiritual needs. We will be happier and more willing to serve Him. We will be less stressed and more focused on His Grace.
Our Bodies are Temples
Numerous places in the Bible, we are told that our bodies are temples:
Do you know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit? (1 Cor 6:19) #faithandfitness Click To Tweet
Do you know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own. (1 Cor 6:19 NIV)
What is a temple? A place of worshipping God. So, if our bodies are temples given to us by God, how would we worship Him? By using our body–using it for service, for glory. Also, by respecting it. We should respect the House of the Lord. Not only by abstaining from drugs and alcohol, but trying to care for it the best we can. Eating healthy foods, and caring about improving our physical health.
Dale Fletcher, M.S, a wellness coach who focuses on the link between faith and fitness said,
To say that practicing a particular faith or involvement in certain religious practices will have an impact on one’s well being and health is oversimplifying things. In fact, it’s missing the main point altogether. The connection exists when people develop the type of qualities that come from knowing God and experiencing His love and in living in a way that God, the Great Physician, prescribes.
God told us a specific way not only to live religiously but also to live physically. The evidence is there in the Bible. In the Book of Timothy, it says,
Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness. Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important for it promises a reward in both this life and the next. This is true and everyone should accept it. (1 Timothy 4: 7-9 NLT)
Even the Mormons believe this so strongly that it’s part of their doctrine. They call it the “Word of Wisdom”–a “revelation” from God telling their prophet what to eat and what not to eat.
The Fitness and Faith Connection isn’t Just for Christians
You don’t have to be Christian or believe in the Bible for fitness and faith to be related. Dale Fletcher said,
“When individuals, regardless of their faith, incorporate these powerful biblical principles of the Christian faith into their lives, the spirituality and health connection occurs and they will tend to enjoy better health and well-being.”
Think about Hinduism and yoga for instance! There have been proven many physical benefits of yoga, which is also spiritual for Hindus. Even Buddhist monks who practice martial arts keep a link between spirituality and fitness.
In the Torah, a Jewish sage said, “strong as a leopard, light as an eagle, fleet as a hart, and brave as a lion to perform the will of thy Father who is in heaven.”
Even according to the Quran, fitness is important:
Omar Hasan Kasule, MPH, DrPH, a professor of epidemiology and Islamic medicine at Universiti Brunei Darussalam, writes, “Physical activity is mustahabb” — a virtuous, or recommended, action — “for its physiological and health benefits.”
I consider myself a Christian and don’t focus so much on labeling myself other than that. I love Jesus, I know He loves me, and I try to start each day with Him and thanking Him for all of life’s blessings! I am obsessed with daily devotionals and am jumping into one called Armor of God now and I can’t wait to dive into it! I feel like the more I talk about my faith, the more like minded fitness loving, God fearing women I surround myself with, and that is just truly an amazing feeling!
I love Jesus, I know He loves me, and I try to start each day with Him and thanking Him for all of life’s blessings! I am obsessed with daily devotionals and am jumping into one called Armor of God now and I can’t wait to dive into it! I feel like the more I talk about my faith, the more like minded fitness loving, God fearing women I surround myself with, and that is just truly an amazing feeling!