Exercise is awesome. Running, swimming, pilates, weights, yoga, basketball, tennis…It’s all good. But have you ever considered that exercise is as much for your SOUL as it is for your BODY?
I have a route that I like to walk. Now, don’t poo-poo my walk because it’s a WALK. This ain’t no ordinary walk. It’s my “walk to the freeway.”
Basically straight up a hill (to where the freeway runs) and then straight back down again. Four miles round trip in an hour. Straight up; straight down. I’m telling ya, that’s bookin’ it. When you hit the road called “Branch Drive,” and you’re already huffing and puffing, and you look at how steep it is, you know this isn’t just a walk in the park. It’s 10,000 steps up and down and 4 miles in an hour. A killer hour.
But here’s the thing. As great as this hour is for my calves and thighs and heart, it’s even better for my SOUL. I can’t do this route by myself. It’s just not happening. I have a group of good friends who walk with me. They are the kind of friends who talk about deep things or silly things, sad or secretive, the type of friends that I can pour out my whole soul to. This is what these walks are all about.
Sometimes I walk with Sarah, sometimes with Katie or Thomas or Drew or my little posse of dear friends. But always, when I am finished, I feel lifted, strengthened, happy. It’s not just the four miles, it’s the friendship, love, companionship, trust and joy I give and receive while trucking up the hill.
I firmly believe that our physical bodies, our emotional states and our spiritual selves are all connected. When one of those pieces falls apart, the rest sort of follow. What we need is to build up all three. Find activities that strengthen the entire YOU. Yes, the physical is important, but mental and spiritual strength are equally so.
Finding a balance, a rhythm which uplifts the entire YOU is where true strength and power and peace come.
That is the beauty of my morning “walks.” That is the beauty of Soul Strength.
What do you do to strengthen your soul???