My Dad has been hiking the Appalachian Trail in sections for the past several years. The whole trail is approximately 2200 miles, extending from Georgia to Maine. In the past, he has done it by actually backpacking and carrying all of his supplies on his back, his tent, sleeping bag, food, etc, and sleeping out on the trail. He’s a tough cookie! We are going to get to go with him this summer to hike a section of it in Vermont! We aren’t so tough though. We’ll be hiking during the day, then either returning to a campground or condo each night. (I know…wimps!) :)
As I get older I realize that I am getting out of shape! lol If I don’t continue to walk and exercise, I lose my ability to do so without straining or injuring something! In addition, the weight has crept up. It really is true, once you hit 40, your body changes, and you can’t eat like you used to. It takes work to stay in shape. So my goal is to lose some of this weight that has crept up and to also remain in shape so that I’m not rolling out of bed all creaky each morning!
I’ve tried many times to lose weight and have had temporary success. But I’m trying something new. Instead of going to the minimum number of calories (1200) that the internet sites will tell you that you need to eat to lose a pound a week, I’m eating an amount somewhere in between the amount needed to maintain my weight and the 1200. This way I am supposed to lose an average of 1/2 pound per week. And I am losing weight, though more slowly than before. So it takes patience to keep my eye on the long-term goal and not expect large amounts of instant weight loss. I’m hoping this is a more realistic plan that I will be able to maintain for the rest of my life. A diet doesn’t work long- term if you can’t stay on it. So far I am finding this amount of calories more reasonable and therefore easier to maintain.
However I also realize that the minute I sit back and congratulate myself for doing really well is about the time I start losing control and all progress in my weight loss. I’ve realized that any success that I have ultimately has to done in God’s strength. I can be successful on my own temporarily. But I don’t have the power within me to continue to be successful. I have to ask God to help me stick with my eating plan and acknowledge that I can’t do it without Him. It is by His power that I can accomplish anything. And the minute I forget that is the minute I begin to fall. Pride really does come before a fall! I know. I’ve tested that out and its true!
Along with my eating plan, I want to be in shape, so when I heard my Dad was going to hike the Vermont section of the trail this summer, I was like, “Can we come???” (I’m not sure if he appreciates four extra people tagging along! lol) But it would be a perfect goal for me to work towards. In my training I can continue to walk short distances locally, and then once in a while our family will head off to a nearby park to hike longer distances with more hills (which requires some searching to find where we live in Tennessee!).
So this weekend we are hopefully heading out to a park about 45 minutes away. We’ll get practice hiking a little longer, up and down hills, and hiking in the woods. I love hiking and being in nature. So I’m really excited about it! But I’m even more excited about our upcoming hike in Vermont! I went to high school in Connecticut, but its been a long time since I’ve been in the Northeast. It is beautiful, and I can’t wait for my girls to get to see the area. And I can’t wait to hike and find out what amazing things God will teach me on my hike!“Remain in Me and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the Vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me. I am the Vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 15:4-5