Input and output: Nutrition and Church

Pick any fitness routine and they’ll tell you something along these lines: “Muscles are grown in the Kitchen” or “Nutrition is the base for all we do.” I’m here to tell you that I believe that is true. CrossFit’s basic ‘guidelines’ for nutrition is “Eat meat and veggies, seeds and nuts, some fruit, little starch, no sugar” in an amount that will allow you to sustain exercise but not promote body fat. Maybe you’re thinking to yourself, ‘I do pretty well’. That’s awesome! Keep it up! But for those who are like me that struggle with having a healthy relationship with food (or maybe too healthy of a relationship with food), I hope that making a connection between what we put in and what we put out will help, as I’ve experienced this to not only be true in the gym, but in the church as well.

Eat meats and veggies, seeds and nuts, some fruit, little starch, no sugar. This is my base. Does it mean I don’t enjoy a nice IPA or Iced Coffee? absolutely not. But I know that the more I stick to this plan of meats and veggies, seeds and nuts, some fruit, little starch, no sugar, the better my performance will be in the gym. When I stick to that plan, I feel as if I have more energy, I am able to move quicker, I’m able to move heavy things over long distances quickly. The type of food that we eat impacts our performance in the gym.

I joke with some of my closest friends and coaches that “mass moves mass” and while this may be at least partially true, if it’s not the right kind of mass (i.e., muscle mass v. body fat) mass can also lead to obesity, type-2 diabetes, osteoarthritis, among other many concerning health issues which we’ll just call ‘chronic disease’. Eating fast food or drinking soda non-stop not can cause you to lean closer to the stage of chronic disease instead of health. I’m not a doctor, so don’t take my unprofessional opinion, but I want my athletes to reach whatever goal they want. Want a 300lb deadlift? I also want that for you…but lets start by evaluating your nutrition. What to shred for #HotBoySummer? Same (seriously…same…)so let’s take a look at your food diary and see what we can improve. What we put into our bodies will affect the output we have in the gym, but also the output we have mentally within ourselves as well. Personally, I find food to be a comfort item. It’s something I turn to when I’m upset or sad (Cheese Curds from Culver’s) and food and I have had a love-hate-LOVE-hate relationship. Knowing my family history, and my own personal health issues thanks to regular doctor visits, I know that if I ever want to play with my future kids, or be able to work on missions trips with my youth group…I need to evaluate what I’m putting into my body, so I can get the best output now and in the future.

The same goes for us as the church. What are we putting into the ‘body’? Is it something that we can expect a healthy output? If you’re ingesting gossip, bullying, etc. You can’t expect to have a healthy output in your relationship with Christ and here’s why: Each person made in God’s image has a role to fill in the Body of Christ. When we consume anything that is not love, joy peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Fruits of the Spirit, Galatians 5:22), we are filling ourselves with less than stellar choices which will give us less than stellar output. We can’t be a healthy church and make unhealthy choices. At the core of our being has to be love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. These fruits are embodied by Christ Himself, and they’re the base for the church’s ‘nutrition’ for output(outreach).

How is your nutrition (physical and spiritual)? Do you also struggle with making good choices?

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