I don’t have kids (only two furbabies), I have a full-time but not excessively demanding job, a healthy but not out of control social life, a small house requiring limited up-keep, a partner who does the majority of the cooking and (sometimes more than) his share of house and yard work, I’m not a member of any team, I don’t do any volunteer work (pretty shameful), live less than 2 minutes drive to my gym…and yet I often tell my self I have no time for ‘-insert activity here-’. Why? It is patently not true. Am I just disorganised? Unmotivated? Lazy? A little bit of everything perhaps.
Being able to fit in 70 minutes of exercise a day (my current goal) would sound like a dream to some with actually busy lifestyles, but I can realistically fit it in and then some…unless I sleep in (even though I consistently get 7-8 hours sleep). Or I don’t feel like going to the gym. Or I plan something else for that time (like watching the latest Game of Thrones episode…).
The main reasons I miss exercising, if I’m honest, can be summarised as:
- Sleeping in
- The weather isn’t right (too hot or too cold)
- I ‘don’t feel like it’
- I prioritise something else
For example, this week I have slept in twice (once I snoozed so many times my alarm stopped going off) and not managed to fit in a single work out on Sunday where I had no particular plans (I went to the markets, did a bit of cooking, did some mothers day stuff (important), read my book….and then holy cow its 8 pm and the gym is closed).
OK, so I need to get my act together. Here are some strategies I have used in the past/read about somewhere/brainstormed to get me moving:
- Set out clothes for exercise AND work the night before. My husband normally is still in bed when I get up and it is ‘such as hassle’ (am I overusing inverted commas??) to get my shit together in the dark without waking him up.
- Go straight from work to the gym. Even if I don’t feel like it or am hungry (I find once I start working out I stop thinking about food pretty quick) or just want to curl up on the couch with the heater on. This is definitely harder in winter (which is coming on quick here in the SH. Winter is coming).
- If I’m waiting for a class at the gym (i.e. I arrive early from work) just jump on the treadmill for a quick run, even if its only 2 minutes!
- If I really can’t bring myself to go to the gym (using weather or not wanting to leave the house as an excuse), work out at home. I have some workout videos (who has videos? No-one. Actually they are on my computer – P90x for those who know what that is) which I am experimenting with and have a range of weight training/cardio/yoga options.
- Only snooze twice. No, ONCE. Alarm goes off – boom snooze. Goes off again – UP YOU GET!!
- Buy myself a few treats to get me motivated to work out, for example some new, not permanently smelly gym clothes. I think I will go through my sports clothes draw and get it organised better/weed out the stuff I never wear any more. I might even start a ‘gym stuff’ draw to consistently put my HR monitor and assorted goodies. That way, instead of dithering around for 20 minutes trying to find where I put my watch I can be like ‘shirt, pants, HR monitor, water bottle, towel, iPod – GO’
- I think I will also get one of these and keep it in my workout draw so I’m not scrambling around trying to find jackets with pockets for keys/phone etc on my morning walks. That takes more time than you would expect. I mean, I know what jackets I have right?
- If I miss a morning walk, no excuses for an evening gym/home workout session.
- Fit in more on the weekends and plan activities around my work-out plan. WRITE IT DOWN and TICK IT OFF. Who doesn’t love a list?
- Write-up/figure out a proper City2Surf plan of attack, do up a countdown calendar with mini-milestones and stick it up on my mirror (gradually start increasing distance and pace and incorporating some sprints and hill work).
- Pimp my iPod playlist with some updated favourites and make up different mixes for different days of the week.
- Think about my goals and why I want to get fitter:
- I want to run City 2 Surf in sub 90 minutes
- I want to MTB (yeah, that’s short for Mountain Bike for people in the know) for more than an hour without wanting to die
- I want to have high snowboarding stamina to smash the weekends we are going down to the snow this year. No stopping for breaks, breaks are what the lift line is for!
- I want to run parkrun in 30 minutes consistently (5km run every Saturday).
- I want to feel ALIVE over winter and not like a hibernating bear.
Right. Let’s go… do you think I have time for a quick nap?