I can remember from all of my Physical Education and Health classes through school being taught that what you put into your body fuels you energy and physical output. So basically, what you eat helps determine what you perform. For example, you can’t put 87 octane fuel in to a rocket and expect it to work, you must use rocket fuel. Here we are in the same thing relating to our bodies. We are created in such a way that the foods we eat fuel our bodies and in doing so determines how we perform in our daily lives. I have noticed in my own life as I have begun my re-entry to the life of an athlete, the way I eat really effects the way I recover and feel the next day. If I eat junk, my workouts are not as productive and I feel lethargic and lazy.
As a coach I try to teach my cheerleaders this truth. The problem was that I was 100 lbs over weight, so they didn’t really want to hear what I had to say on the matter. So, I started my journey through CrossFit and eating right. Now, they see the change, and hopefully even the changes in energy level and production as a coach.
The reality is that this truth does not only apply to the physical, but the mental and spiritual as well. What you take into your system mentally and spiritually affects what you put out in those areas. If you take in garbage, you put out garbage. Spending time watching worthless television or playing mindless games does not allow your brain to function in such a way that it builds strength and productivity. So, when it comes time to use your brain it is not conditioned to do so in an effective way. This can really hurt the cheerleader who is required to remember routines and eight counts. The inability to think on the spot can really hurt the performance of an athlete. Mental sharpness is important for an athlete and taking in garbage will leave the brain unable to work when it is called upon.
I think that both of the previous things feed into the spiritual realms as well. We are spiritual beings living in a physical world. The things that we do physically effect the spiritual and visa versa. Spiritual health is as important if not more important than the following, but I believe that the three are linked in a beautiful way. Our physical condition is often a physical representation of our spiritual. Not always, but usually. Sometimes we spend hours intaking scripture and things of that nature, but not much time doing what it says. Just like we spend many hours consuming food, but when we don’t do anything physical, we blow up and physically represent the fact that we lack activity.
Jesus refuted Satan saying that “man cannot live off of bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” Matthew 4:4 (ESV) Jesus also said to His disciples who wondered where His nourishment came from that “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.” John 4:34 (ESV) The problem is that we cannot do the latter without consuming His word. In addition to this if we do not commit our whole lives, the spiritual, physical, and mental, to the service of the One who called us, we will not fully be effective in the work of His kingdom.
If you are lacking in any of the areas listed above, be proactive and change your diet. Take in the proper foods to perform to our maximum ability and to be the most effective you that you can be. In order to be the most effective, though, you must do so in all three areas. Seek out the King, take in Jesus who is the “bread of life” and put out incredible results. Be the you, that you were created to be!