When I first started to commit to fitness I was in college. Not only did I have a full time class load, but I also worked 3 jobs totaling over 40 hours a week. Working the equivalent of a full time job as a full time student doesn’t leave a person with much time for other activities, but I was determined to get into a steady routine at the gym.If you’re reading this, you probably understand the struggle of trying to fit fitness into a busy life. Maybe you work 2 jobs, have kids, or just have a lot of responsibilities that take up most of your time. Let me start by saying, congratulations! You’re taking steps toward improving your health by looking for advice and that alone is commendable. Personally I don’t find those posts that say “you have the same number of hours in a day as Beyonce” very helpful or inspiring–you also don’t have the team of trainers, nutritionists, personal assistants, chefs, etc. that Beyonce does so how is that a fair comparison? I want to leave you with some actionable advice for staying active and healthy when life wants to get in the way. Let’s get into it.
Every Workout Doesn’t Have To Be Great
Sometimes at the gym I feel like I’m on top of the world. Britney Spears is blasting through my headphones (don’t judge, Work B**ch will forever be my get pumped jam), I hit a new record on a lift, and I leave feeling those endorphins flowing. Other days, I forget my headphones or I’m having an off day, none of my lifts are as strong as I would like, and I leave feeling weak and defeated. Both of those are okay. What isn’t okay is giving up after one of those bad days. I have literally had workouts that lasted 10 minutes. If I really don’t want to go to the gym I’ll make this deal with myself–just go and if you still don’t want to do anything when you get there, head back home and you’ve still accomplished something. Usually I end up coming around to it by the time I’m there, but if not I don’t worry about it. Staying healthy is a marathon. Don’t burn yourself out with workouts you hate, just keep yourself in the pattern of getting up and doing anything that furthers your goals. Realize that not every day can be record breaking and sometimes your body just isn’t feeling it. Do what you can, don’t beat yourself up, and just keep coming back.
Fit The Time You Have
Let’s be honest, sometimes taking a full hour out of your day to get in a workout is HARD. But, let me ask you this–do you have 15 minutes of downtime to do some squats? Can you get in a 10 minute power walk? These things may not sound like much, or really feel like they count at the time, but every minute that you get off the couch and move your body is a minute that brings you closer to your goals. The little things add up so don’t take that for granted!
I have always been fairly obsessive about planning my week out (if I lost my planner I might lose my mind), but even if you aren’t, taking a look at your week ahead and seeing when you will have time to fit in exercise is going to make a difference. Is Tuesday looking crazy at work? Then make sure you break a sweat on Monday. Have an early meeting Wednesday? Plan for an after work session instead. Pre-planning your workout schedule makes it non-negotiable. Set that appointment with yourself and, no matter what, don’t cancel. Your health is the most important thing you have so treat those workout sessions like any other meeting and hold yourself accountable.
Getting into a consistent routine at the gym can be one of the hardest parts about maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but following these tips will hopefully make it less daunting. Do you have any other tricks for keeping yourself active with a busy schedule? Leave a comment and let’s connect!