Is It Too Late To Start Exercising Now?

Laurette Willis 072213 B&WPerhaps you haven’t exercised in a l-o-n-g time.

Maybe your schedule at work or home demands too much of your time or you simply fell out of the routine. I have good news for you! If you haven’t exercised in months, a year or ever—it’s never too late to begin making fitness a part of your life.

I know. For most of my life I hated exercise and did not follow a sane food plan. I fought excess weight and overeating since I was a child. As a teenager, I tried lots of kooky diets. I even went on a water fast for 10 days (and believe me, there was nothing spiritual about it; I just wanted to be “skinny.”). I became skinny all right. I also developed pneumonia and looked horrible. The weight piled back on shortly thereafter, with an extra 10 pounds on top of it!

After I came to Christ in my late 20s, the Lord delivered me from alcoholism, helped me quit smoking, redeemed my life from the deception of the New Age movement (metaphysics, mysticism and yoga), and brought a loving husband into my life. But overeating and lack of discipline continued to plague me.

“Father,” I prayed, “You have removed so many negative things from my life. Please help me overcome this, too.”

Victory in this area did not come as quickly for me as it did for the other addictions which had held me captive. In fact, the fruit of self-discipline is something I must be conscious of walking in every single day in order to experience the freedom the Lord promises us.

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.” (Galatians 5:1)

For me, freedom from “couch potato-ism” and overeating is a choice I have to determine to “stand fast” in daily. Thankfully, the more I “exercise” self-discipline, asking for God to help me, the more I find myself actually wanting to be more active, eat more healthful food and saner portions.

Do we have to exercise?

Well, that’s up to you. If you want to be what I call a “fit witness” for Christ, have a healthy body (“the temple of the Holy Spirit,” according to 1 Corinthians 6:19), full of energy and strength to do all the Lord is calling you to do, it is certainly advisable.

You may already know some of the problems associated with not exercising:

• weight gain

• decrease in flexibility, strength and balance

• increased blood pressure and cholesterol levels

• aches, pains and other medical issues

Hey! You told me there was good news…

There is!

Even if you’ve not been consistent in years, beginning some regular exercise now can help in a number of ways:

• reduce the risk of heart disease and osteoporosis
• relieve stress, anxiety and depression
• achieve and maintain a healthy weight and fitness level
• strengthen bones and joints
• strengthen the immune system
• increase energy levels
• decrease risks for various diseases (including diabetes, colon cancer, plus high blood pressure, stroke and degenerative diseases associated with age)

While plastic surgery is only skin deep, exercise benefits us inside and out. Some encouraging news for those of us over 30 years of age appear to gain the most benefits from exercise. After the age of 30, the body responds quite well to the overall “tune-up” exercising brings.

So, why don’t we “Just Do It”?

I could tell you all the things the world tells us to do to motivate ourselves—all of which boil down to a Nike-inspired, “Just Do It!”

It’s not that easy though, is it? That’s probably why research from Johns Hopkins is predicting that there could be a 75% obesity rate in America by the year 2015.

But we don’t have to be part of that statistic. As believers, we can lead the charge to change. We can be “fit witnesses” for the Lord, leading others to health in spirit, soul and body through a relationship with Jesus Christ.

Does the Bible have answers to help us with weight and exercise? Yes!!!

Galatians 5:22-23 lists the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

Patience, faithfulness and self-control are the three fruit of the Spirit I’ve found most helpful in going from being a “couch potato” to someone who actually enjoys walking and getting some exercise in every day.

You already know how to yield to the Holy Spirit and the fruit He is developing in your life in some areas.

For example: When someone on line at the grocery store is taking a long time paying for their purchase, you don’t throw a wall-eyed fit anymore, do you? You don’t stomp your feet, jump up and down and bang your shopping cart into the register, do you? Of course not!

You’ve learned to yield to the Lord and the fruit of patience. “Okay, I’m letting patience have its perfect work in me. The Word says it’s by faith and patience that I inherit the promises of God. All right! I’m up for that!” You may not do that spiffy a job of it, but at least you’re trying.

Why not plant some seeds toward developing the fruit of patience, faithfulness and self-control in the area of exercise, too?

Here’s an idea:

1. PLAN:  Tomorrow—or today—plan to take a brisk walk for 20 minutes. Or do a quick workout (there are several quick exercises and workouts with accompanying scriptures online which you can do at home or the office at my website ).

2. TIME: Choose a time you will get some activity in.

3. ASK: Speak to the Lord and ask Him to help you keep your commitment to honor Him by taking good care of your body (the “temple of the Holy Spirit”) by doing some physical activity for 20 minutes.

4. DECIDE: Make the decision now that when the time comes to fit the activity in, you will NOT yield to any excuses, but yield to the Lord.

5. YIELD: When the time comes, dedicate the time to the Lord, and go for that walk, Christian Fitness workout, or whatever you’ve purposed to do.

6. PRAISE: Praise the Lord for His faithfulness to you as you have just begun a new habit. Go through the steps again for the next day, and the day after that.

With time and practice, the fruit of faithfulness, patience and self-control will become more fully developed and you’ll find yourself actually looking forward to moving your body and praising the Lord! By giving your time and yourself to the Lord in this way, you’ll find His grace sustains, maintains, contains and retrains us to be all He’s call us to be.

And now I’d like to invite you to get my free guide, 5 Simple Steps to Looking & Feeling Fabulous, at

Christian Fitness Expert and Certified Health Coach
Laurette Willis is the Director of PraiseMoves Fitness Ministry with DVDs,
Training, and Classes by Certified PraiseMoves Instructors on six continents (

*Disclaimer: This forum is intended to provide general health and wellness information only. It is not a prescription and/or endorsement for any specific health/medical brand, product or program. You should ALWAYS consult your physician before starting, changing, modifying, or stopping any non-prescription and prescription medications, herbs, treatments, alternative therapies, exercise/wellness programs, physical and/or psychological therapies.

Special Guest: Hannah Webb

Hannah Webb 072213 B&WNot too long ago an inquisitive individual asked me a series of questions, “Do you feel like you have missed a lot of your childhood by growing up on the road? How in the world did you prepare for Miss North Carolina?” and my favorite, “Do you ever get tired of being on the road?”

Growing up on the road with the two greatest parents in the world, it has been the ultimate joy and honor. Starting my high school years as a “new” homeschooler and taking a full time position with the Rick Webb Family Music Ministry, I feel as though I gained an education that a majority of my peers will never have the opportunity to experience. That education that the Lord has so graciously given me is something that I do not take for granted and each day I am humbled by the fact that He has awarded me this opportunity.

As a child, growing into a young woman, I developed an introverted, shy personality and gained an excessive amount of weight. Answering the call to music ministry at age 16 was a major “feat” for me, as it was a personal battle just to step on a stage. Just a little over a year ago, I took on a brand new journey of my life after I competed at and won the title of Miss Gaston County, a local preliminary competition to Miss America. Loosing over 90 pounds and “stepping out of my comfort zone”, the Lord has released me of many insecurities that I had developed over the years. I have taken on a completely new healthy and active lifestyle and my goal is to inspire and encourage others to take care of the bodies that God has given us as 1 Corinthians 3:17 states. So how did I prepare for Miss North Carolina while on the road? I educated myself on proper health and fitness and I made the extra effort to take care of myself, despite the unhealthy choices on the road.

When I was 17 years old, I experienced poverty for the first time when Compassion International took me to the Dominican Republic. I came home and started personally sponsoring a little girl from Indonesia named Irma. I truly believe that the letters from my little “Indonesian sister” has played an enormous part in my growth. In January 2013, I was able to experience poverty, again, at its lowest in Haiti. Witnessing the light that Compassion is in such a dark country made me fall even more in love with the work and ministry of this incredible organization. I also fell in love with a little girl named Kelida and started sponsoring her, as well! Being a sponsor of two children while being apart of a faith-based ministry gives me an opportunity to trust that the Lord will provide the money to send … and boy, does He! What a blessing Compassion International is!

When I sit back and think about the Lord’s timing, I am blown away at how incredibly perfect it is. I imagine the Father chuckling to Himself as we fret over situations that are out of our control and then at our astonishment when He shows up. As a “Doubting Thomas”, I have finally learned to wait for Him to reveal His awesome wonder. Do I get physically tired while on the road? Yes. Am I constantly on my toes, like a game, waiting for a new blessing to arrive? Absolutely and I am re-energized each time I think of what an amazingly, precious God I have the privilege of serving.

I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.

Acts 20:24 

Hannah Webb is a Christian Music Artist with the Rick Webb Family

and Miss Gaston County (NC) 2012.

Cool Summer Salad Combo

Are you looking to avoid the preparation of large, warm meals during these brutally hot and humid summer days? You’re not alone! Firing up the oven on afternoons such as these is a recipe for disaster as temperatures rise and appetites wane. Keeping adequately hydrated and nourished can evolve into a dilemma as we seek to trade off the excess heat, so here’s a favorite combo we think you’ll find light and refreshing on the warmest of days!

KC’s Chicken Salad Sandwich

Serving Size – 2

2 Cups of Freshly Cooked Chicken (Can be Substituted With Canned Chicken To Avoid Heat)

1 to 11/2 Tbsp of Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip

1 Stalk Freshly Chopped Celery

Onion and/or Garlic Powder To Taste

Salt and Pepper To Taste

Mix Well

Served on Bread of Choice and Topped With Lettuce and Tomato

KC’s Cucumber Salad

Serving Size – 2

1 Medium Freshly Sliced Cucumber

1/2 Small Freshly Sliced Onion

*1 Small Tomato, Small Wedges (Add Just Before Serving)

1 Tbsp of Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip

1 Tsp of Vinegar

Salt and Pepper To Taste

Chill Before Serving


KC’s Beverage Selections

Serving Size – 1

1 – 8 Ounce Glass of Iced Tea or Mint Iced Tea OR

1 – 8 Ounce Glass of Water Served With a Wedge of Lemon or Lime.

Back To Basics

Is your frustration with money (or the lack thereof) keeping you from attempting to create a warm and welcoming haven for you, your family, and guests? Perhaps you have a plan for a major house renovation, but you’ve abandoned the idea because you’re discouraged with the tallying of the estimated costs and now you don’t feel you can do anything. Well my friend, take heart, because while you are budgeting and saving for that next big project, here are a few small things that can make a difference:

1. Keep it clean. It doesn’t matter if you live in a mobile home or a million-dollar mansion, keeping your environment clean and fresh can make all the difference. My, what a little soap, water, and elbow grease can accomplish!

2. Keep it organized. Organizing your surroundings will often times help you organize your thoughts, yours actions, your days, and your lifestyle. Take advantage of “to do” lists, files, folders, drawers, and totes to keep you on top of your busy household and schedule!

3. Un-clutter. Schedule times throughout the year and unload the excess baggage. Donate items that are in good condition to the local thrift store, church care closet, or to someone you know who might be able to use them. If you’re looking for some extra change (to save towards that big project) or want to donate some funds to a worthy project, have a yard or garage sale

4. DYI (Do It Yourself) projects. Changing or updating fixtures on kitchen cupboards, lights, switches, etc., can give any room a new appearance. A little fresh paint can provide a new look or dimension to an old space or item. Simple throw pillows can add a different element to living spaces. Restoring old furniture or an antique can give any room or the outdoors a fresh look and a bed and breakfast feel. Adding flowers, greens, and mulch around shrubs, walkways, and/or trees can totally redefine your outdoor landscape.

Making small, gradual changes will allow your living spaces to take on a whole new personality and charm, while providing you a relaxed and comfortable surrounding that will simply welcome you home.