in training

My daugher and I just joined the gym.  It's a great place with lots of bells and whistles and weights and things that move and move us.  Upon joining, the director told us we needed to make an appointment to find out how all the different machines worked.  That sounded simple enough.

We were so wrong.

Our appointment with the ever muscular, personal-trainer-for-the-evening Ryan was this past Friday night.  My daugher and I arrived looking all Nike and Reebok and wearing a lot of black that stretched.  He put us on treadmills first, and as we were leisurely strolling on the moving belt, he stood between our two machines and told us about heartrate, strength limits, muscle fatigue, and getting the most out of our workout. We chatted and smiled and listened and took a sip of water from our filtered water bottles, never sweating a drop and thinking how easy this whole fitness thing was.

Soon that became a distant memory.

As he spoke, Ryan worked with what looks like the cockpit of a 747 at the front of our treadmills.  There were numbers flashing, electronic red hearts beating and numbers escalating.  With the touch of an evil finger, he pushed up the incline and increased the resistance.  As my calves and thighs started to notice, my smile began to fade a little as I now needed to concentrate on just staying on said treadmill.  There would be no more conversation.

The more I walked uphill, the more I realized my towel and water bottle were now lifesaving devices instead of accessories.

He pushed another button and started us on a program that involved what he called "an upper body workout".  I prefer to call it "pushing a cement block through a brick wall".   And Ryan decided that while I'm pushing this block through the wall, I should be walking on even more of an incline to maximize my efforts.

I'm thinking I should clobber Ryan with my efforts before I pass out.

As I started to balk against these life-threatening changes he was making to my initially flat, slow walk on the treadmill, he just looked at me and said, "Well, you want to see change, don't you?"

He had me there.  He was right.  Yes, I do want to see change, and I guess sometimes it can take a little pain to get there.

Your path may get steep, my friend.  And as you begin going uphill, you may be handed a concrete block along the way to push through a brick wall that is now right in front of you.  But it's all right.  Welcome these things.  They are not your enemy.  They are your trainer.  It's all about change, and God always uses it for your good- to make you more like Him.

And that's always worth it.


  1. The pain stinks but so worth it. No pain, no gain - not just physically but spiritually as well. Liked this post.

    1. Thanks Don! Yep, the same principle applies to a lot of areas of life.


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