Getting in shape begins with a mental exercise. It was your positive mental attitude that got you off the couch in the first place, and it will take a positive mental attitude to keep you off the couch.

To become physically fit you must become mentally fit. Your success for reaching your genetic potential will come from the strength of your mental attitude. To avoid hitting a plateau in your progress, keep a positive attitude.

It's amazing how our spiritual lives run a similar parallel. After we learned about the Lord and His love for us, we received Him as our Savior and were born again. Our outlook on life changed--we perceived things differently than before.

But over time, if we are not careful about maintaining a close relationship with the Lord, our spiritual fitness will suffer, and our spiritual effectiveness will plateau. Keep in mind that the reason why you do anything in life should be to honor the Lord. This attitude wins every time.

So for the next two months, I want you to follow the training and diet strategy outlined here. Likewise, make extra time for the Lord. Stay in the Word and talk with Him daily. Adjust your attitude so it is positive, focused and God-pleasing.

START THIS: Your first two months have been your break-in period (see "Phase One" in the January/February 2003 issue). Now it's time to add resistance training to the mix. The greater your muscle mass, or lean weight, the better your conditioning becomes. Your body will benefit from improved heart strength and function, greater caloric expenditure, plus improved performance overall.

Choose any cardiovascular exercises that you enjoy and bump up the time to 25 minutes per session. Do this three days a week for this month. Next month, add 5 minutes to each session.

Include these resistance exercises with your cardiovascular training program: Perform three sets of 10-12 push-ups. Vary your hand spacing for hitting different chest, shoulder and arm muscles. Perform three sets of 15 deep knee bends (to a chair). Keep your back straight, your eyes looking forward and feet shoulder-width apart.

WORK THIS: There is a saying in the world of bodybuilding: You can't flex fat! If it has been a long time since you've seen your toes while standing and you've forgotten how many you have, then remember to keep hitting those abs!

Add reverse crunches to the regular crunches from Phase One. Lie on your back with your feet off the floor and your knees bent. Place your hands, palms down, alongside your hips. Press down with your hands while curling your knees to your chest. Lower your rear to the floor and repeat for three sets of 10-12 reps, three days a week. Alternate the crunch and reverse crunch for variety and priority.

EAT THIS: Try drinking one 8-ounce glass of water every waking hour until you consume half your body weight in ounces. Sip water before, during and after your workouts.

To lose that extra body fat around your waist, try avoiding carbohydrates at night. Make your last meal 2-3 hours before going to bed. Include protein in each meal and snack for muscle repair, plus a fat-burning effect.

PRAY THIS: I challenge you in your daily prayers to commit your body to Him. Allow the effort and sacrifices you are making toward a healthier more fit body be for His glory.

By turning away from your former frame of mind and taking on a new attitude that places Him in the center of your life--body, soul and spirit--you agree with what the apostle Paul said in Philippians 3:13-14: "Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus" (NIV).


Joe Christiano is a recognized fitness expert and author of Seven Pillars of Health (Charisma House). Visit his Web site at bodyredesigning.com.

Best Magazine Deal. Subscribe now and get 3 magazines for the price of 1. Get Charisma, SpiritLed Woman and Ministry Today, all for $24. YES - I want this deal!

3 Reasons Why you should read Life in the Spirit. 1) Get to know the Holy Spirit. 2) Learn to enter God's presence 3) Hear God's voice clearly! Click Here to draw closer to God!

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Donald Trump certainly needs your prayers.

    Why You Must Pray for Donald Trump

    Here are eight ways I plan to intercede for President Trump regularly.

  • Pastor Jim Garlow in a file photo shown praying.

    Conservative Christian Leaders Gather in DC, Calling Trump's Election an Answer to Prayer

    "Although the news media is predicting protests, what I'm seeing is that everyone is abuzz ...

  • Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    I have been puzzled about the subject of inner healing for some time.

  • Here's a prophetic word for Washington, D.C.

    Prophecy: The Lord Is Raising Up Daniels in DC

    I believe we're on the precipice of a Third Great Awakening the Lord spoke to my heart about in ...

  • 2017 is the year that swords will clash.

    Prophetic Word: 2017 Will Bring a Clashing of Heaven and Hell

    "This is a time to cross over and not pull back."

  • Bishop Eddie Long died at 63.

    Bishop Eddie Long Dead at 63

    "Although his transition leaves a void for those of us who loved him dearly, we can celebrate ...

  • Roadblock

    6 Roadblocks That Will Stop Your Spiritual Growth

    God wants you to grow in your faith, but many of us get stuck along the way.

  • The devil will try to silence you in any way he can. Don't give him the satisfaction.

    Satan's 2 Most Potent Lies to Render You Ineffective

    There's something in you so powerful that Satan doesn't want it out. Kyle Winkler reveals ...

  • Watch for these danger signals for choosing poorly.

    4 Signs You're Making a Bad Decision

    Avoid distraction and disappointment by testing your choices with these 4 principles.

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit