One of the things I'm most asked about in my everyday life and via email/comments from blog readers is how do I find time to exercise in the midst of everything we call life. The answer: it's not always easy, but it's something that I not only enjoy doing, it's something that's good for my body. For me, it's not a question of if I'm going to exercise, it's a question of when. Exercise is just as important for my body asfood and trust me, you won't ever find me skipping a meal!
For the most part, I'm a pretty determined/dedicated person, so if I want to get a workout in even if my day is packed, I'm usually too stubborn not too. Now, occasionally, there are days (specifically, rainy days that call for a good book) when I've planned to run that I don't and I'm slowly learning that it's ok.
What works for me may not work for you, but I always enjoy reading about how others do things to see where I can apply some of their tips to my own life. Here are a few tips that are useful to help you incorporate exercise into your (already) busy life.
1. Make Weekly Goals
Each week, I like to run between 15-20 miles. I usually run 4-5 miles at a time, which means I run 4-5 days each week. I almost always have two rest days per week where I don't plan any exercise.
2. Check Your Calendar
We're all busy and have our time committed in so many areas, but often, there are little pockets here and there where exercise makes sense. I like to look at my calendar (I use an Erin Condren Life Planner) to see what days most work for rest days and go from there. This time of year, my rest days often revolve around when the boys have sports.
3. Plan for Exercise
Once you know what your calendar looks like, you know when you can exercise. I work out all different times of the day depending on what I have going on.
My favorite time of day to workout and run is in the morning, but that doesn't always happen. Mornings are tough, especially when you have kids to get to school and work to go to, but in a perfect world, I'd work out every morning. Some days, I'll jump on the treadmill for 2-3 quick miles (I have it down to a science) after the boys are off to school, while on other days, I take a "runch" which is my version of lunch.
I'm very fortunate that I have access to a gym at work. Some days, like yesterday, I'll jump on a treadmill and get in a few weights before taking a quick shower and eating lunch at my desk. Working out at lunch is not always ideal, but sometimes, it's really the only time I have that I can workout. This week, for instance, I've run five miles at lunch twice simply because we've had a lot going on at night. Yesterday, I watched Fixer Upper on Netflix while I ran and it really made me feel like I had a break even though I was exercising.
Sometimes, on the weekend or if the boys aren't home, I'll run at night. I much prefer running outdoors, but again, if it's really early or at lunch, I'm usually on the treadmill because I don't like being out alone in the dark.
There you have it: 3 quick and easy tips to help you fit in exercise in the midst of your busy days. If you have other tips, please share! I'm always looking for ways to simplify!