I think we can all agree that ruffled leotards, 80’s-style-leg-warmers and toast-colored tights are 3 things not to do at the gym these days.

But with the onset of all of the New Year’s gym-goers, I thought I’d share some confessions (#SMH) and offer some advice that might be helpful for you when you’re at the gym, too, sunshine.

Some may seem like no-brainers, but sadly, I sometimes do these things, so I thought we might all need a little check-up and accountability.

#1: Judge an overweight person.
Confession: I’ve looked at some overweight people and have thought,
“Why on earth are you wearing THAT?”

One day when I was thinking this exact thought, the Holy Spirit spoke to me: “Frannie, you don’t know her story. What if she’s lost 50 pounds and is working toward her next goal.”

Well if that wasn’t a double serving of humble pie!? Now, I have made a point to walk by and encourage someone who might be struggling through a workout and offer a genuine, “You are doing it!”

#2: Compare yourself to other, fitter people. 
Confession: This just happened this week.

When taking a group fitness class, I seem to hone in on the fittest person, and they become my opponent.

If they use 2 risers, I am using 3.
If they use 8lb. weights, I’m using 10lbs.
Yes. I’m ridiculous, I know. Don’t judge me.

And worse yet, I use the mirrors on the walls as be-mean-to-Frannie-reflectors. That fit person often has smaller thighs than me or buffer arms or a flatter stomach. I use the mirrors as opportunities to see what I don’t have rather than celebrate the progress I’ve made.

Rather than competing in 2018, I am making a conscious effort to celebrate others’ strength and athletic prowess (and 6-pack, too) and my own, too!

#3: Go bare. 
sunshine, raise your right hand and swear that you will not go to the gym without a towel.

There are lots of germs, not just during the cold and flu season, but all of the time. Always use a clean, personal towel as a barrier between you and the equipment you’re using.

Of course, I could go on and on about gym etiquette, but what’s most important is that you are participating in some exercise regimen to keep your holy temple in tip-top shape–body, mind, and spirit, to honor and serve The One who created you, sunshine.

“Or didn’t you realize that your body is a sacred place, the place of the Holy Spirit? Don’t you see that you can’t live however you please, squandering what God paid such a high price for? The physical part of you is not some piece of property belonging to the spiritual part of you. God owns the whole works.
So let people see God in and through your body.”
1 Corin 6:19-20 The MSG