the reckless dad

‪reck·less /rekləs/ adj. without thinking about the consequences. rash, heedless, impetuous, impulsive, daredevil, audacious, madcap‬

Category: Training

Wisdom

  

It’s 8:30 on a Friday night and I’m on I-75 in the middle of South Georgia. Why?
I’m heading to north Georgia with two of my independent living youth. We are headed for the culmination of a mentoring program they started on the spring. It feels a little odd to be wrapping up the mentoring program I wasn’t really a part of. But tha s kind of how it goes. 

I have mixed feelings about being away from home this weekend. Without letting the cat out of the bag, there’s a lot going on back in Orlando. Ronda and I are in the midst of praying through a big situation for us. On one hand, I want to be there with her. One the other hand, I’m looking forward to the space and clarity that comes with spending a weekend in the woods. 

I suppose that means this weekend has a twofold purpose for me. To capstone the mentoring program and solidify my place in the lives of these youth as a mentor. And to allow God to speak to and mentor me this weekend. I have high hopes for this weekend. I’m trusting God won’t let me down. He doesn’t usually. 

The Celldweller song ‘The Last Firstborn’ is playing. That song always make me think of the Apostle Paul. He claimed his apostleship cake as one untimely born. I feel that way. Not that I’m an apostle, but that I often wonder about God’s choice to love me and use me to fulfill his purposes. But he does. And I believe this weekend he is going to teach me as much as he teaches these dudes with me. 

In some ways, I really need to hear God speak to me this weekend. I need it more than I have in quite some time. We started a new sermon series at church last week on the book of James. I’ve been reading it this week. In chapter 1, James says any who lacks wisdom should ask God in faith that he give generously to the obedient. That’s where j find myself. Asking for wisdom. Asking for God’s spirit of be upon me and inform my decision-making. I want to be a spirit-filled wise leader of the family and ministry God has trusted me with. 

This seems like a good place to close… God grant me your spirit of wisdom to be a wise leader of the people you have given to me. 

Admitting Defeat

  

I don’t admit defeat.

I don’t like defeat. I don’t like admitting I have been defeated.  I don’t like admitting I started a challenge I couldn’t finish. I especially don’t like admitting defeat when it highlights my shortcomings or inadequacies. 

Today, I admit defeat. I admit to biting off than I could chew. I ain’t to thinking more highly of my abilities than I should have. 

I endeavored to run 8 miles this morning. I made it to 3.3 before I completely bonked. There was just no gas left in the tank. I write this as I hang my head in shame walking the reminder 5 miles home. Luckily, I won’t have to because my wife is on her way to save me.  This experience has taught me a few cuable lessons about running, training and life. 

  1. You have to fuel your body. Now this may sound simple, but I’m notorious for not doing it. I didn’t eat or drink anything this morning before setting out to run. I have learned to be able to ‘compete’ at the level I want to, I need to take my nutrition and hydration seriously. Eat healthy. Drink water. Fuel my body appropriators the task at hand. This is true across all areas of life. You must prepare yourself appropriately for the task ahead of you. You have to be prepared to tackle the obstacles ahead. Pre-planning prevents poor performance. Or as I like to practice: piss poor planning provides piss poor performance. Fuel yourself for what you are doing. 
  2. You have to be realistic about your limits. Last Friday I had a minor surgery removing a mole or something. The doctor said to lay low for two weeks. Let the stitches heal and come out. Blah blah blah. I took a couple days off after I had been slowing down leading it the procedure. I then expected to jump back into a long run. I ran once or twice this week and last week and then expected I could pound out 8 miles unfueled. This wasn’t realistic. I should have planned a week or two of light running to get back to where I needed to be for an 8 miler. This is also true across life. Trying new things and pushing ourselves are fantastic ideas, but only after we have trained and prepared ourselves for what comes next. 
  3. You have to be serious. I have realized the best way to describe my approach to total fitness (training, running and eating) is undisciplined. I’m undisciplined. This is harder to admit than defeat. It’s hard to admit I love my life haphazardly, coming and going with whatever and not sticking to discipline. I’ve known this about myself for a year or so. I’ve been trying to work on it, but I still have a long way to go. I believe, being undisciplined is the main thing holding me back from doing incredible things in my life. Having order and organization feels rigid and robotic, but being disciplined allows for things to be accomplished, tasks to get completed and progress to be made. I’m making progress in becoming disciplined and slowly I’m seeing my life pull together. 

I admit defeat. I admit that an 8 mile run defeated me today. But I also admit, I have learned about myself and will be better equipped for the next one. 

What have you learned from times you’ve admitted defeat?

#trainingformy40s

  
Some time ago, I began to use #trainingformy40s when posting my training whether it was running, crossfit, weight training or hiking. Anything athletic or exercise or training related. I did this because I decided to take a long haul approach to my fitness. I have always trained in some way, never with any real purpose or meaning behind it. Never with a goal in mind. Never with anymore thought than I should do this.

When I train now, it is less haphazard and slightly more on purpose. I want to be interesting the best shape of my life physically, mentally and emotionally by the time I am 40. On my 40th birthday, I want to look back at my life and say, ‘I have never been healthier than I am at this moment!’
As we age, too often it seems we lose the many of the things we once had in our youth. I don’t want to be that way. I want to be better than I am now and when I was younger. I want to stand on the precipice of ‘the hill’ and as I begin my descent down, I want to be in my Prime. I want to face the second half of my life better prepared than I faced the first half.

For this to become reality, it takes determination, drive, discipline and sweat. It takes getting out of my comfort zone and forcing myself to train… especially when I don’t feel like it. It is about finding a routine of training that works to cover all aspects of what I want to accomplish. It is about getting my eating habits under control (the piece I’ve always struggled with).

It is about total health.

It is about discipline.

It is about 1 Corinthians 9:27 – but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.

Sleep-Deprived Thoughts and Musings

Sleep is for the WEAKSleep eludes me sometimes.

I begun to realize my life goes in cycles of sleep. It’s been awhile since I’ve had trouble sleeping. Not sure if I could quantify why I haven’t had trouble sleeping until recently.

I wonder if it’s related to stress… although, stress doesn’t seem to explain past experiences with trouble sleeping even it might explain my current stretch of sleep elusion. So, stress maybe the culprit currently but historically it hasn’t been therefore it can’t be the answer.

Anxiety? This doesn’t seem to fit either. I could make a case for higher anxiety currently, but I don’t know if it works historically to explain it.

I suppose it possible I have inadvertently altered my sleep patterns. I’m not staying up particularly later than is ‘normal’ for me. The hang up is, even when I do go to bed I’m unable to sleep. I guess I am starting the going to be process slightly later than normal… but this feels like it would be a waste to head to bed if I’m not going to sleep.

Contentment? Could this be a reason? I feel a fair amount of discontent currently… I don’t know if my discontent and general lack of joy are strong enough to prohibit me from sleeping. It would be hard for me to identify if this reasoning works from a historical perspective. It’s possible. It could make sense. At the same time, it feels as though I have a generally discontented disposition. If I am generally discontented by disposition, then I’m not sure if this explains it due to discontent feeling like a larger over-arching theme in my life not following any sort of cycle.

It’s not outside the realm of possibility, I have sleep issues because I have conditioned myself to be awake late and therefore I am the cause of my trouble sleeping. While this seems like a potential answer, it doesn’t feel right to me. I don’t think I am conditioning myself to stay up later, I think I stay up later because I can’t sleep.

I’m not any closer to understanding why I have trouble sleeping some times. What I do know is stress, anxiety and contentment are withiny power to change.

Stress… there are countless strategies to reduce or relieve stress from our lives. For me, it’s as simple as running, training, Xbox or taking a few quiet minutes to breathe and collect myself.

Anxiety… this is a little more difficult to quiet. But, through quiet time and prayer even this can be calmed. By realizing there are things I can’t effect change upon. Understanding I can only do what I can do and I can’t do anything more. It isn’t always easy and it doesn’t always go away, but I also don’t have to hopelessly accept it always has to be present.

Contentment… sometimes, faking it is the best way to create it. I don’t have any secret recipe or potion to cause contentment. I have been able to draw a connection between my walk with God and my contentment. The closer I walk, the more contented I am. Sometimes it helps to remember not everyone appreciates sarcasm as much as I do and maybe I should be a little nicer. If I try to manifest kindness and gentleness and self-control, it makes it harder to think about how unhappy I am.

Contentment is about happiness. What do I have to be unhappy about? I live a life full of blessing and privilege.

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. (‭Philippians‬ ‭2‬:‭3-4‬ NASB)

Reinventing Ourselves

image1How often do we approach each day as just another day? How often do we come to the end of a year and face the beginning of the next one as thought it is just another day or just another year?
It is likely we nonchalantly go from one day to the next without a second thought, but it rarely happens that we go from year to year without making a big hoopla, big to do or ordeal out of the passing of one day and coming of another. Why? Is there something more special about the first day of a new year? It has 24 hours like all the rest. It falls within the context of a normal week and a normal month.
What makes it so special? It feels as though the end of the year and the beginning of the next allows us a second chance. It feels like the end of the year gives us a chance to start over. To begin anew. To start fresh. To reinvent ourselves.
Here we are, a couple days into 2015. I don’t know what 2015 looks for you, but I know for me it is going to be one full of transition, full of excitement and full of God moving in the life of my family in radical ways.
I typically shy away from making new year’s resolutions, mainly because I don’t keep them past the first day. But this year, I have set some goals for myself. Audacious goals, actually. I’m not calling them resolutions, but goals rather. I have a strong list of goals I want to accomplish in my life in 2015.
Discipline.
You can narrow down all my goals into one word, and that word is discipline. Not that I am an undisciplined person, but I feel like I could have more discipline in my life. I came to this realization about 6 months ago. I began working on becoming more disciplined, but still have ground to cover.
Everything I do over the next 12 months will be in an effort to create more discipline in my life. Becoming a better father, a better husband, a better leader, and a more complete person has at its heart becoming more disciplined. I am working to create more discipline in my training, in my eating, in following through on responsibilities and in my spiritual life.
I don’t know what your success has been with resolutions, but I encourage you to take advantage of the beginning of 2015 and use it as a fresh start to reinvent yourself to become the person you have always wanted to be. You are the biggest obstacle to setting new goals for yourself this year. My goals are big. They are audacious.
In 2015 I plan to reinvent myself. I plan to become the Eli God has called me to be. I plan to be a better father, a better husband and a better person. I am not content with selling myself short any longer
I am capable of more.
And so are you.

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