While I was back east with my kids–especially the first day of our visit to Washington, D.C., I became very convicted in my heart about how sedentary my kids have been during the years we have homeschooled. I value physical education and activity, so why haven’t I made that a vital part of our homeschool curriculum? Time, primarily. It *is* hard to do all the other subject areas and enrichments (like music) and make time for exercise. BUT…I must.

So, since we had ended two units–one in history and one in science–just before leaving on vacation, I decided upon returning home to make a deal with the kids. I won’t ask them to do science and history (per say) during the month of May IF and this is a big IF, we plunge ourselves headlong into a month of family fitness. Not a huge diehard program, but of daily being active in some way and daily making some small little choice in our eating to say no to self.

We would journal each day about how we feel physically, emotionally, spiritually and, at the end of May, evaluate what we would do for June. It is like an experiment. (Of course, Michaela pointed out that a true experiment has only one variable and we are throwing in too many variables for it to be a true experiment…sometimes she is too smart for her own good.)

Additionally, we are reading the Harris boys’ Do Hard Things. This is an amazing book. I am totally motivated! It exposes the Myth of Adolescence and challenges teens to “rebel” against low expectations. Oh my word…I am excited about what my kids may feel led to do as the “Do Hard Things” that God is calling them to do.

This past week, these changes in our homeschool curriculum made life SO much richer for me. I hope for them, as well. I guess technically, we only really did this stuff for a couple of days…starting May 1.

You may wonder how I would feel about logging and journaling my own physical activity with the kids and/or doing a regular exercise program of some sort, given my past and how I have avoided returning to obsession by avoiding any kind of regular program at all.

God brought something important home to my heart this past week. And now it is time to see if I can follow His prompting. Of course I can! He pointed out in my spirit that I enjoy freedom with my eating, right? No food is off limits, right? In fact, at Thin Within, we use Colossians 2:20-22 to point out that it is so easy for us to try to control the food to feel righteous when what we need to do is to control the heart. I have not had any difficulty with the concept that I no longer need to control the food. I understand and embrace the fact that my heart must be submitted to the Lord–no food is evil! When I go bonkers with a certain food, it isn’t the food that is an evil “trigger,” but it is proof that my heart is still chained to the food and my heart must be dealt with.

I understand, believe, and live that with food.

Well, what about exercise, logging and journaling and so on? God convicted me that a regular exercise program also is not some great evil I should avoid. By avoiding it, I am controling an external instead of my heart. I must, instead, allow him to teach me how to walk in freedom amidst exercising and logging and journaling. In essence, it is time for me to “grow up” in this a little bit. Besides, while I have always loved exercise, is it possible that my heart is deceiving me…that I really am…dare I say it…lazy…and just don’t want to exercise?

While it *is* true that I don’t want to become dependent on exercise to have a body that I am willing to accept…as I believe that is total captivity (where you live in fear if you don’t have time to exercise, or have a legitimate reason not to or something)…by the same token, God wants to train my heart to cope with those things in life…and that exercise is good for my heart.

I know that I have a very active life compared to most just by nature. Yesterday I exercised three of my horses, for instance! That required quite a bit of *me*. My arms are strong and my back has to do a lot, too (last night it was screaming at me that it had done too much!). But I know that, like my kids, I would *feel* better if I was fitter. If I was able to enjoy mountain biking for instance…When I used to run all the time, I will never forget the first time I tried true mountain biking in Lake Tahoe. I was fit enough that I could do it without having ever done it before. Either pedaling up some hills or getting off and hiking with a bike up hills was no big deal to me because I was fit.

I live in mountain biking mecca. I would LOVE to mountain bike with the kids. It would be great to be *able* to without dying. Yesterday when I was riding Breezy, I saw some guys sailing…I don’t know what you call it…it wasn’t hang gliding, and it wasn’t parasailing…but it was like a parachute…they hiked up the hills and let the sail carry them around…Oh my…it was breathtaking to watch. I want to do that and must be able to hike up those hills to do it. (Which shouldn’t be too tough given my usual routine involves climbing up steep hills with a feed bucket full of hay spreading it in the hillside forest for the horses! LOL!).

Anyhow, this month will be a training time for me…not just physically, but spiritually–that I don’t return to captivity–obsession. We have a 2 week free pass to a gym that we used to be members to. We will enjoy using that, too, after everyone is totally well. Maybe that will be our last two weeks of May or maybe I will save it for the first two weeks in June! We have to drive 45 minutes to use it, so the gas costs are expensive. The kids and I have enjoyed playing racquetball there before. Talk about a workout!

All for now!