For more on this topic, look in the sidebar under "gluttony" or "weight loss".
Many mornings, as I force myself to get out of bed and head off for my morning exercise, it is a huge struggle. Huge. I am weary. I am lazy. I want my bed. I want a life of easiness, indulgence, sloth...
So I remind myself of the healthy weight range for someone of my size and bone structure: 114-127 pounds. I'm not there. Yes, I could make all sorts of excuses. Those are just numbers on a scale! I'm athletic, and muscles weigh more. All the women in my family have thyroid problems (two have had to have thyroid surgery) and I'm sure my thyroid is probably out of whack, so who can blame me for extra pounds?
But the truth is right in front of me...and right behind me. I've indulged myself too much this past year in food and in laziness. The extra weight is there for a reason --- my gluttony and my sloth put it there.
I remind myself of my tiny bird bones and of how I don't want to end up with a broken hip in a few years. I can still add to my bone density, but it will take work. Hard work. But, at my age, should I really risk doing less than what it takes?
I remind myself of diabetes. I'm a ticking time bomb. I know what I need to do to make myself healthier and less at risk.
I remind myself of my children. None of them are married yet. Some are still quite young. I don't want to be one of those grandmas who is too feeble from years of unhealthy living to play an active role in the lives of my future grandchildren. I don't want to continue setting a bad example for my children. If I am someday dependent on them for care due to my own physical limitations, I don't want it to be for diseases and health conditions that I brought upon myself.
I remind myself of my husband. Yes, his example in this area is not one to follow. No, he doesn't support and encourage me in exercising good stewardship over the body God has given me. In his perfect world, I could be as gluttonous as the day is long and, without doing a thing, somehow be transformed into a delightful person who is fit and trim and movie-star-gorgeous. I know it will not happen. I also know, realistically, that at my age and with my looks, it is really not good for my marriage for me not to be in the best possible shape that I can. I can't be movie star gorgeous, even if I went to the best plastic surgeons of the bunch. Then there is my age --- I'm turning 50 next month. The best I can do is to age well and the best way that I can do that is to be healthy and fit. And that takes work. Constant work. But how can I do anything less for a husband who does so much for me and overlooks so many of my faults?
I remind myself of God. He made me. He gave me this body. Yes, he looks at my inward heart, and I don't think the numbers on the scale matter as much to Him as they do to me. But...if He looks at the inward heart...that means He sees my laziness, my gluttony, my desire to indulge my appetites, the way I've used food to avoid turning to Him...that is so much uglier than any amount of fat my body could possibly carry.
So I drag myself out of bed. I force myself to exercise. I pray for God's help in overcoming temptation. I keep track of what I eat. I do it so that I will be healthy and more energetic. I do it for the children I teach, so that I may lead by example. I do it for my own children. I do it for my husband. I do it for God.
But I still have to do it.