Weight Loss – I Struck Out This Week

I love baseball. If I had been any good at it, I would have played professionally. My dream as a kid was to play in the Major Leagues. But, I couldn’t even make my high school team. I did make the Little League All Stars when I was twelve!  But, that was the peak of my baseball career. 

Because I love baseball so much, I coached. I first started coaching my son and his baseball team way back in 1976. I coached my daughter and her fast-pitch Little League team from 1987 to 1992. In 1990, I coached them to a first place finish and was chosen as our league’s All Star Team coach. We won District and missed winning the State Championship by one run. 

I was the head baseball coach for Augusta Christian High School, and we went 9-9 and tied one game called on account of darkness. 

Then in my public school career. I was the head coach for both baseball and fast-pitch softball. I coached us to county championships in both sports. One of my biggest thrills was beating a coach who played in college and then went as far as the AAA level professionally. 

My last hurrah was coaching my grandson, Gabriel (navy blue shirt) and his Dixie Youth baseball team in Eufaula, Alabama, last spring.  It is 300 miles from my house to Eufaula. I stayed alternately with my son and daughter in Dothan and commuted home on the weekend. 

It was great fun. I couldn’t play the game, but I knew how to coach it. 

 I guess I’m thinking baseball because this time last year, the Eufaula rec director gave me and my son a team with some misgivings.  How was I going to make practices and games living 300 miles away?  But, he gave me a team, and I will be forever grateful to have coached my grandson and coached with my son who was my assistant coach. 

Weight loss for me is kind of like a baseball game. You win some; you lose some. The World Series winners always lost games on their way to the World Series. But, they won far more than they lost. No team ever made the World Series with a losing record. 

And in baseball, you strike out, and sometimes, you strike out a lot!  One thing that I couldn’t stand as a coach was when a player took the last strike without swinging. I used to yell from the dugout, “You got two strikes on you. If it’s anywhere close, if it’s not over your head or in the dirt, you’ve GOT to swing!  Don’t let the umpire punch you out!”  I would rather see him ground out, pop out, fly out, or go down swinging than strike out looking at strike three! Make an effort!  Don’t just stand there and take strike three!

That’s the way I feel about my weekly weigh-in today on my bathroom scales. I struck out, but I went down swinging! I made the effort to eat properly and walked almost eight miles last week. 

I weighed-in this morning at 236.9 which is a gain of 4.1 pounds over last week!  4.1 pounds!  I couldn’t believe it, but the scale doesn’t lie. 

That’s the first week I’ve gained since I consciously started to lose weight by healthy eating, eating smaller portions, and walking at least a mile every day!  I had lost weight for six consecutive weeks!  

Looking at it from a baseball standpoint, I went 6 weeks out of 7 at the plate. That’s an 858 batting average. What baseball player wouldn’t take that? 

So, this morning instead of wallowing in self-pity and feeling depressed and wanting to quit by saying, “What’s the use? I just can’t lose weight.”  I went to the batting cage for some extra reps to try and figure out why I struck out. 

I was dipping my shoulder too much at the plate. I was stepping out on the pitch. After seeing my mistakes last week, I left the cage with a new resolve to hit a homerun this week. I’ll eat even smaller portions and walk three miles today. I walked two yesterday and think I can walk three with no problem today. The soreness in my calves has finally gone away after several weeks of walking. I played through the pain. I should be good to go today. And, it’s a gorgeous Georgia winter day in the 70’s and not a cloud in the sky. We’ll take the Shelties and walk in the  beautiful 1200 acre Georgia Wildlife. Management Area. 

It’s a worship experience out there too. No sound but the leaves crunching under our feet on the wooded trails and occasional barks from Sophie and Lilly at a bird we’ve spooked. 

Walking in the wilderness lets me focus on how much I’m gaining with God through the process of trying to consciously lose weight, and it makes me all the more determined to keep playing this game until I achieve victory. 

“I’m running hard for [home plate]. I’m giving it everything I’ve got. No sloppy living for me! I’m staying alert and in top condition. I’m not going to get caught napping, telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself” (1 Corinthians 9:26-27 MSG). 

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