It was never a question of wanting to work out. The answer to that was simple -- no. I didn't want to. Technically speaking, it was more of a "HECK, NO." I was desperate, however, to become the type of person who actually wanted to. And I didn't know how.
For all I could tell, it seemed to be a gene, and I'd missed it. Really missed it. Like, you know the joke about "not standing in the right line in heaven" to get naturally curly hair, or musical skill, or athletic ability? Yeah. That was me and my bod. We were stuck with each other -- and neither me or my body seemed to be crazy about the arrangement.
Lately -- and I don't know why, or how, but I've grown. I run. I run. I run. It seems to have come from nowhere. One day I started, and ...it just kept going. The struggle to continue diminished. Even after a week-long trip out of state -- I get back into it; I keep on going. Even after an injury. Even when Betsy's ornery. The sustainability factor is astounding.
And all of this rambling about me and my new-found appreciation for exercise? Well, I keep wondering about progress. Learning. Growth. How it happens. For me, I seem to take these magical spurts. Sometimes, I fight and fight and no matter how hard I try, I just don't make the progress I'd like. Then, without any reason at all, the pieces are in place and things work. I don't know what was wrong before, or what has adjusted to make everything right.
And it's always been that way -- with so many things: public speaking, exercise, cooking, teaching, religious studies.
As a teacher, I noticed that same trend with some of my students. With most of them, though, I noticed that as they began a new skill, their first success wasn't consistent. There was a practicing stage - sometimes short, sometimes long - before mastery occurred. I, however, seem to have a delayed (delaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayed) time frame before I even begin showing any sign of progress. Then I leap up quickly -- if not to mastery, at least to significant improvement.
Growth is interesting, isn't it? It's been very faith-promoting for me to suddenly discover that, even with things I didn't think I'd ever be able to change, new skills can be learned. The Lord works miracles of all colors and varieties. If he can raise the dead, he can help me learn to run. And he's loving enough to do just that.