One of my hobbies is cycling. I have done it for almost 30 years now. I originally started it because I had Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) in my knees, feet and ankles. I saw it as a way to strengthen my legs and get fit at the same time. Prior to getting RA I was a runner.
When I was younger it was normal for me to ride 40-60 kilometres per day. I would aim to 200-300 kilometres a week from Monday to Saturday and have Sunday off for rest and church. My goal was to average 30 kph pace for my rides.
These days I usually ride for time. Mostly I ride for 20-40 minutes and it is at a much slower pace than in used to be. Now in my mid 50s I am happy to cruise along at 15-20 kph. Funny how we mellow as we age!
Now I have three bikes that I rotate depending on how I am going and what time of the year it is. I have a racing bike for times when I want to go faster, a mountain bike for when I want to ride the trails, and a single speed city bike that I use as transport.
Depending on what gym sessions I am doing at the time I ride from 2-3 times a week. If I am doing three gym sessions a week I alternate gym and cycling 3 days each. If I am doing a 4 day split, I only ride 2 times a week.
Cycling for me is much more than fitness these days. It gets me out in to God’s creation and I often find myself praying and reflecting as I ride. I get fit physically and spiritually as I ride. It is nothing for me to ride off on a trail in town and pause to look at God’s creation or just sit and pray for a while.
I am hoping cycling is something I can do in to my old age. I would be great to still be riding well in to my 80s or 90s.
One of the things I was just pondering is how most Christians would like to be more active physically and spiritually. They would like to be “fitter” in both areas.
Most people I talk to on my journey would like to get a bit fitter and lose a few kilograms. For some not exercising is a time issue, for others it is due to illness or others it is just about motivation.
In many ways this is like being spiritually fit. Most Christians would like to read their Bible or pray more because they know that it will help them to be spiritually fit too.
One thing I have been blessed with is discipline. I am very disciplined in both fitness areas. I regularly read my Bible and pray and I also have a regular fitness program.
I started my current exercise fitness program in 1985 and my spiritual fitness program in 1989. They are both things that are set patterns in my life.
So what is my advice for people who have not set up disciplined patterns? What would I suggest for people who are doing no exercise and no Bible reading?
My best advice would be to start at five minutes of each per day. Walk for five minutes at a comfortable pace five or six days per week. Then each week add an extra minute until you get to 30 minutes.
The same goes for Bible reading and prayer. Read your Bible for two and a half minutes and then pray for two and a half minutes and add a minute each week until you hit the 30 minute mark in total.
You might think that five minutes of each is not much, but at first it is about establishing a habit of doing it and of developing the discipline. Before long you will be doing ten minutes of each and so on.
Establishing a healthy fitness routine will make a big difference for you both physically and spiritually. It is just about getting started and establishing a routine.
I have decided to begin afresh and start a new blog on WordPress. After blogging since 2005 mainly on PASSIONAustralia.org, I decided to hit the delete button and start again from scratch. It is something that I have thought about doing for a while. But it took a while to take the leap!
As you can imagine 15 years is along time and things change a lot. Fifteen years ago I lived in a capital city, now I live in a small country town. I had young children, now they are grown up and have left home. I worked in the government, now I have worked as a country church Pastor at several churches.
Those things alone are a lot of changes, but I have also since starting blogging I have attended Bible college. This changes you too. So much so that much of what I wrote 10-15 years ago, I would not write today or I would say it differently.
So what I am going to write about? Being an ex Pastor and a former Bible college student I want to write about faith, life and the Bible. I will also share my sermons I preach, the articles I write, and others resources that I have written over the years.
So I hope you enjoy my new blog. I am hoping to post a few times per week.
God’s Richest Blessings,