Monday, July 21, 2014

Week 76 - July 14-20, 2014

The hospital where we teach Eikiawa has beautiful art displays.  We enjoyed this display of summer fans this last week.  It is in the waiting area of the hospital (doctors offices).
 Another beautiful flower arrangement at the International center this week.  They often display flower that are in blossom locally as the white lilies have been of late.
These flowers seem almost to be volunteers.  They are growing in the parking lot at the apartment building for the Kumamoto/Nagamine Shimi (Sisters).  I took the picture after we checked their apartment this week.  Japan has amazing flowers. 

We also checked the Kumamoto/Nagamine and Yatsushiro Choro (Elders) apartments this week.  The missionaries had worked hard and had clean apartments.  We enjoyed lunches at all you can eat Yaku Niku and nan curry (curry and fried bread from India) with these faithful missionaries.
We had the Kumamoto Ward/building open house Saturday.  Members and missionaries invited friends, contacts and Eikiawa students to the event.  There was a program and then a wonderful potluck/taco rice dinner enjoyed by all in attendance.
Early in our mission we had the mission doctor from Tokyo come and share ideas with the missionaries on how to stay healthly while serving the Lord as a missionary.  He and his wife did the exercises above alternating exercising days and jogging days.  They are in their seventies and had served more than one mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since retiring.  Elder Koberstein and I decided to try their exercise routine. 
We had sons and daughters setting good examples of controlling their weight through exercising and eating habit changes.  We decided we needed to get on board with them, if we wanted to continue to enjoy the outdoor activities we all love with our children and grandchildren.
We started jogging 3 or 4 months ago.  We have consistently jogged for 30 minutes a day on Monday, Wednesday and Friday (even in the rain). We have sons and daughters whose advice to us when we started jogging was to start slow and work up to your goal.  One of our daughters recommended we use the C25K Free program for our ipod touch.  She had used it.  We downloaded it and started running.  It was quite an experience for me.  The first day I was not sure I could complete the 30 minute workout which included a 5 minute walk, then alternate 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for the total of 20 minutes and last a 5 minute cool down walk.  
I hurt my knee before our mission and knee replacement was discussed.  When we started jogging it bothered me and so I pulled out the brace I had bought from the United States to wear.  With the brace on I have been able to jog.  I have consistently used the brace until Friday.  I forgot the brace and did not realize in until later in the day when I saw it on the bedroom shelf.  My knee had not bothered me.  Maybe my knee is getting stronger.  Some of our children told us muscles get stronger as you build up your activity slowly.  I am a believer. 
I see good results from this decision.  I have fought high blood pressure for a few years.  I had worked with weight watcher and lost over 40 pounds.  I thought I was exercising by biking but have found out that jogging is a much better form of exercise for ones heart.  My doctor here in Japan asked me about my blood pressure this last time we were in her office.  She had noticed it consistently much lower that before.  I was proud to tell her I was jogging.  I am so happy with the results I see.
 In summary, my blood pressure is lower, my knee seems to be getting stronger and maybe someday my running times will improve but for now I am just running.  I hope to find a grandchild to run a 5K with when I get home from Japan.  Any takers? 
Scripture of the Week
D&C 88:124
Cease to be idle; cease to be unclean; cease to find fault one with another; cease to sleep longer than is needful; retire to thy bed early, that ye may not be weary; arise early, that your bodies and your minds may be invigorated.

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