In most of my blog posts I  focus on emotional or spiritual health, and I often talk about ways that these are connected.  In my everyday life, I try to maintain a healthy balance–paying attention to spiritual, emotional, mental, relational, physical  health. 

Taking care of my physical body is challenging for me; I would enjoy spending the entire day at my computer; that’s not a good thing to do.  My chronic muscle pain gets worse when I neglect exercise. Walking is the best exercise for me.

Despite that, motivation to keep my muscles in shape becomes harder every winter. When the roads are icy, it’s raining, or the temperature is near 32 degrees F., I can very quickly talk myself out of going for that daily walk. 

As I confess in the  following poem, “the ones  (muscles) I need for sitting are the ones I use the most.” To get myself back into the habit of walking in inclement weather, I recently signed up for a membership to walk at a local athletic hall.  A friend, who’s been equally delinquent in exercising, agreed to join me. 

My Muscles

My muscles are important;
I only have one set.
If I jerk and snap them
I know they’ll feel upset.

They will scream and grumble;
Yes, they’ll complain.
And if I do not listen
They will turn up the pain.

My muscles won’t keep working
For days and months and years
Without some recognition—
Some evidence I care.

Food, fresh air, and movement
Are what they need to stay
Awake, alert, and happy;
They need some everyday.

My muscles are not rigid–
Like stuffed upholstery;
They’re fluid; they keep changing;
They’re a living part of me.

They notice when I’m angry;
They get prepared to fight.
When I choose to hold a grudge
They pinch me in the night.

They notice when I’m anxious;
They stiffen right away.
They do not let me sleep at night
When I fearful stay.

They notice when I’m tired,
They tell me, “Get some rest.”
If I refuse to listen
They do not speak in jest.

My muscles work together
In antagonistic pairs—
A team to help me lift
And a team to climb the stairs.

Some to help me breath
And some to work my heart—
If I had no muscles
I would fall apart.

Some muscles I keep hidden;
Others are exposed.
But the ones I need for sitting
Are the ones I use the most.

My muscles are important
I will listen when they “talk,”
Try not to get them triggered,
And be patient when they balk.




4 Responses

  1. This is so true and so well written. You could have written it for me – except you seem to exercise more than I do. I really need to get back into a plan. My muscles have been speaking and I need to listen. Thanks for the reminder.

  2. I am not enjoying the “aches and pains” of aging and I don’t understand why my body is so stubborn and resistant to exercise. It seems like this is a common complaint.

    1. Thank you for your comment, Judy. I can relate to what you feel and are experiencing. Finding the balance between what is ‘enough’ and what is ‘too little’ exercise is difficult. But I usually error to on the ‘too little’ side.

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