Getting Fit, Losing Weight, and Helping Hunger

In 2011, I was committed to health and fitness.  I did great!  Lost about 40 pounds and completed a half marathon.  I still had more weight to lose at year’s end, but I had NEVER felt better physically, spiritually, and emotionally.

Then, the beginning of 2012 happened.  Life happened.  I tried to stay focused on staying fit, but I just couldn’t.  In fact, I am thankful that I’ve only gained about 15 pounds this year, not 40 (or more!)

Now, 2013 is approaching.  My husband and I both feel out of shape and a bit slobbish (made up word).  We registered for a half marathon in November and began training.  But, I went to Honduras the week before the half marathon…a week of training we couldn’t afford to lose.  So, we didn’t participate.

Let’s face it. I didn’t want to finish with a slower time than the previous year’s half, so I pulled out (i.e. afraid to fail).

Since then, we’ve not resumed training because there’s no race looming.  We’ve been recording our food, but Thanksgiving blew said recording out of the water.


We have a few options…eat whatever until New Year’s Day.  (It’s the holidays!  We deserve it…yeah, right!) Continue sleeping in because it’s too cold to run in the mornings. While this sounds awesome, it’s not.  We are both sick and tired of feeling sick and tired.  I read this and knew we had to change…

There are 925 million people in the world who are hungry, while 1 in 6 Americans face hunger. We are gorging.  They are starving.  Something’s wrong here.

Indeed it is.  Something is very wrong here.  Steve and I want to steward God’s blessings well.

So, we’re acting.  Beginning November 26 at 5:30 a.m. back into gear we go.  This time we are excited because this isn’t our normal weight-loss endeavor.  We’re getting fit for a cause.

From November 26 to December 16, Steve and I are joining Clare at Peak313 in 21 Days to a Hunger-Free Holiday.  Each time we choose to say NO to unhealthy and YES to healthy, we will put money in a jar.  For example, if we exercise, money goes in the jar.  If we pass up the cookies at the party?  More money in the jar!  If we indulge, no money to the cause.  We’ve discussed different amounts for different choices from exercising  (we plan to pay ourselves per mile) to saying no when faced with junk food.

On Monday December 17, we will donate the money we collected to the Latrobe Street Mission, a homeless shelter in Parkersburg, West Virginia, that will open at the beginning of December.  I love Latrobe’s mission because they offer a hand up, not a hand out.  The program is structured to help the homeless long-term.

I agree with Clare’s observation, “I’ve found that we are more apt to do something hard on our end, on behalf of someone else…We can justify our time and sacrifice if it means someone else can benefit from it!”

We plan to write our sacrifices and shares using Clare’s notes.  These will be especially helpful for our kiddos as they’ll be joining us too.  They will donate minutes of service for healthy choices instead of money.

Our family will also memorize these verses:

John 6:35  “Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.” 

Hebrews 13:16 “And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices, God is pleased.” 

We’re getting fit for a cause.  We hope you’ll join us! And, this is only the beginning of what we feel God leading us to…

Steve (my husband) is researching races (from 5K’s to half marathons) that support causes we love.

On my blog in December, I am sharing 12 Days of Giving.  Then, in January, Steve and I (and we hope you!) will begin Pound for Pound.  In a post the week of December 17, we will detail our weight loss and fitness plans for the new year along with our plan to donate one pound of food to the homeless shelter for each pound we lose.

The schedule of posts and charities (including the Latrobe Street Mission) for December and January are coming soon, but we still have a few more amazing stories to tell as part of 30 Days of Story!

Thanks for “walking” with us!  We’re grateful.  To Him be all the glory.


  1. Michelle Wilson says:

    This is another reason why we can see Jesus in your eyes….Love you my friend

  2. Love this! So glad to have you on board with us! You are so focused–I’m impressed! BTW–I’m from Belpre and went to church in Parkersburg. Small world!

    • Thanks, Clare:). I actually knew you were from the area. We have a mutual friend: Ashley Misel. She is in my care group, and she trained me for and participated with me in the Columbus half marathon. She speaks highly of you:)

      • Oh my goodness! Love Ashley!! Well, thank you for following the blog. Many blessings to you and your ministry (and your part of the challenge!)

  3. Laura Gardner says:

    You are such an inspiration to me. I have been trying to find a way to motivate myself but I seem to have just given in to bad eating habits and not exercising. This blog has motivated me and I hope I can keep it going. I plan to give food to the food pantry our church supports in Cross Lanes for all my right choices for the next 21 days. Their pantry was pretty much wiped out with the storm in June so I’m sure with the holidays they can use all the food they can get.
    Thank you for always being so inspiring and doing things I have only dreamed about. Your mission trip pictures were awesome.
    Looking forward to a healthier end to 2012 and a healthy beginning to 2013.
    God bless you with all you do and all the people you inspire.
    Laura Gae

  4. I love this idea. It is exactly what I need right now. I did very well and lost weight throughout most of 2011 and have continued working out, but my eating has been out of control. I just volunteered at Feed My Starving Children last night and felt sick about what I had eaten when most of the kids only get something once every few days. I am joining you on this and look forward to it! Thanks for the details.

    • Tammy…I am so glad you’re joining us! We’re also doing a Pound for Pound challenge beginning January 1. For each pound you lose, you donate a pound of food to a local charity. Sounds like you already have a great place to donate. We’d love for you to join us in January too…praying for you and your journey:) Sarah


  1. […] yesterday I joined Sarah Farish, who introduced me to the challenge, as well as Clare and her community in the quest to get […]

  2. […] I am still in process…still losing weight, I am thankful my husband has joined me for 21 Days to a Hunger-Free and Healthy Holiday.  We started on Monday. Both of us feel better already.  We donate $1 to the Latrobe Street […]

Leave a Reply to Sarah Cancel reply