Longing to be a loser…

…and a big (or small?) one at that!

Back in January I talked my DH into signing up for the Biggest Loser challenge at our local Y. It was a two for one deal that ran 12 weeks; the price couldn’t be beat and the timing was perfect to help in our fight to shed some of the unwanted weight and increase our health before heading back to the mission field.

My quest for adding ‘loser’ to my to-do list is not so much based on aesthetics as it is to being healthy. Like every other woman, I want to look good, but in this I’m a realist. I’m over 40, I have four kids (six pregnancies, two miscarriages), and the stress of constant transition and ministering in a spiritually oppressive area have all taken a toll. (We had a pastors wife- who is a friend we’ve known for 20 plus years- take one look at us when we arrived in the US in 2006 say to us, “You guys look awful“. Yeah, well, we kinda knew that!)

As a missionary, I recognize that holistic health (physical, mental, emotional and spiritual) is extremely important. I have come to realize that one of the ways the enemy seeks to devour us is through sickness in our bodies. I am Pentecostal and believe in healing. Many times we have called on the Lord and He heard our cry. But I promise you this truth: our greatest spiritual breakthroughs and victories have been followed, almost immediately, by some form of physical illnesses or attack. I could give you a list! Many missionaries reading this would concur with me.

Years ago I remember reading about a ministry, perhaps it was the Salvation Army (?), that during it’s inception the ‘recruitment papers’ for workers required them to be physically in shape: an ideal weight, commitment to regular exercise, etc. Compliance was given by a signature; poor health or weight gain would revoke their appointment.

I thought that was pretty bold of the ministry and was slightly surprised by this requirement. There is, however, understanding to this. I receive a daily e-mail for all the prayer requests of missionaries in our fellowship and indeed there is much physical suffering and pain. Many will tell you they were perfectly fine until they began serving on the front line of Kingdom work.

As mentioned above, there is no question that one of the enemies tactics is discouragement and stalling of the spread of the Gospel through physical attacks. Therefore, it does make sense for Christian workers to become proactive in this, and to not give the enemy even a slightly cracked door into this area through poor physical self-care.

And thus my frustration. The biggest loser challenge has come and gone…and I’ve lost basically nothing. A few pounds down, then back up. I have worked out an average of 4 days per week (and that’s a conservative average due to at home workouts not recorded) and have eaten so many spinach salads and fiber I thought I glimpsed a cotton tail growing behind me and wheat sprouting from my head.

Since my workouts utilize the computerized Fitlinxx system, I can track both cardio and weight training. To impress you, here are my numbers from February 1 to end of April: 24 hours 36 minutes 22 seconds on cardio burning 11,408 calories; in weight training: 4,002 reps in 262 sets for a total of 165,930 lbs. lifted.

So why in the world am I not losing weight? I feel like I’m trapped in this body I hate. I have since signed up for a free account at SparkPeople.com and am hoping that may work for me. We are expecting to move back to Mexico in six weeks…and I just want to be healthy.

Any thoughts? Words of wisdom?

Pray for me.

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