We were never meant to do life on our own. Back at Creation in Genesis, God said it wasn’t good that man should be alone. When God ordered Noah to build the ark, He told him to take TWO of every kind of animal along for the ride 🙂 I believe our fitness journey is no different. We need a friend, a community to do this fit life with.
I have been blessed to be a part of some great groups of people who have supported and encouraged me along the way. I believe there are 3 main reasons we shouldn’t go alone on our fitness journey.
- Accountability – Especially if you’re just beginning on your fitness journey, it’s good to have someone to check in with. Our running group has 3 meeting times each week, and we even take attendance. That keeps us accountable. Or you may have a training partner that’s expecting you at the gym at 5:30AM. You’re not going to want to leave them standing! Accountability helps you stick with it and make it a habit. It keeps you honest!
- Support and Encouragement – When things get tough, it’s easier to keep going when someone is cheering us along. It’s nice to have friends along the course when we’re running a big race or texts from someone saying “Good luck” or “Great job”.
- Stretch and Grow – When you’re with other people, you just work harder. You go farther or faster than you would on your own. When you’re checking in with an online group about your daily food intake, you’re more apt to follow your plan knowing others are doing the same. You’re just able to do more than you ever thought you could, because you have the courage to do it.
I always thought I was just fine on my own when it came to my running and to my weight management. I liked my solo runs, and I’ve counted calories and thought I knew everything I needed to know about nutrition. But I was so wrong. When I finally stepped out of my comfort zone and joined Shelby Roadrunners over 10 years ago, I realized how neat it was to have a “fitness family”. They held me accountable. They wanted to know where I was when I didn’t show up. When I first started running, I felt like I was just chasing them. But as time went on, I got stronger and faster. I’ve run times and distances I never would have had I not joined the group.
When I decided to sign up with a coach and an online community of women who wanted to focus on faith and fitness, I realized I still had a lot to learn about my motivations and priorities. I grew stronger in my faith and learned about proper nutrition. I became vulnerable about my struggles, and I found acceptance and encouragement.
I Thessalonians 5:11 tells us to “comfort each other and edify one another”. And Hebrews 10:24-25 encourages us to “stir up love and good works….assemble together….and exhort one another.”
We were created for community. We need each other. My running community and my online girls and my “Fit & Free” friends are really family to me. I can’t imagine doing life without them.
Do you have a fitness family? If so, tell me about them.
If not, I encourage you to find one. I’m opening up a 40 Days of Faith & Fitness group next month. I’d love you to join our community. Let me know!