This morning’s run was only two and a half miles, which is short by definition; but running any miles on already tired legs becomes a strength workout, for body and mind. I knew I would likely struggle to stay mentally positive given the condition of my legs, but the simmering early morning temperature beckoned me out of doors before the sun rose high and hot.
So today’s run would require a suitable mantra to keep my mind off my tired legs. I thereby chose words that would make me think I was something which I was not altogether actually feeling. Today’s mantra would be: “I am strong…I am fast”. And with every breath in I would think, I am strong; with every breath out, I am fast.
The power of a focused mind is an amazing thing! This morning’s run was everything I hoped (thought and breathed) it could be: refreshing, revitalizing, inspiring and FAST! But then, a funny thing happened as I walked the final steps up my driveway to the front door. As I was relishing my short run accomplishment, a thought came to mind: “It is good to exploit the weakness“. Really? Exploit the weakness? How can that be good?
Exploit: to utilize, especially for profit; turn to practical account; to advance or further.
As I allowed that idea to clank around inside my head, I was beginning to see the value of working with our weaknesses. Yes indeed, this is what strength training is all about after all, which is namely, to exploit our weaknesses so as to advance our strength and balance in body, mind and soul. Yes, that’s exactly right! To exploit or expose the ‘weak links’ in regards to our fitness and strength training is to recognize those areas in ourselves in which our natural abilities have fallen short.
Admitting your faults isn’t a weakness – it’s a strength. Having your weaknesses pointed out isn’t a slur on your character – it’s an opportunity to improve your life. James A. Owen
These areas of weakness then, really become our allies for growth, if we only accept them as such. If our focus on weakness is positive, then we can embrace the opportunity to build and improve (repair) our weak links. If our focus on weakness is negative, then we may not be able to address our brokenness and thereby we become self-defeated. This attitude transcends every area of our life. We are, after all, what we think we are…
I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ’s strength moving in on my weakness. Now I take limitations in stride, and with good cheer, these limitations that cut me down to size — abuse, accidents, opposition, bad breaks. I just let Christ take over! And so the weaker I get, the stronger I become. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 (from THE MESSAGE)