Finding Time for Exercising

It’s getting to be about that time.

You know what time we’re talking about. The time when the gym starts getting a little father away. The time when that cookie starts looking a little more appetizing. The time when it’s too cold/warm/rainy/sunny/light/dark to do any exercise. Yep, it’s a month or so away from that New Year’s Resolution, and the passion has faded, and if you haven’t fallen completely off the exercise wagon, then at least the ride has started to get pretty bumpy.

While your resolution has its heart in the right place (namely, your heart), implementing it so that it lasts the whole year long remains the biggest obstacle. We lead busy lives, and there are always other things to do. However, by making exercise a priority, and by understanding, and getting others to understand, that exercising isn’t an indulgence, but a necessity, you’ll not just find time to start getting in shape, you’ll start making time to get in shape.

Alicia on ‘Help Them Help You’

‘I have too much to do.’ How many times have I said these words when thinking about exercising? And it’s true. I do have a lot of things on my plate. Work. A child. A husband. A home. The list could go on and on. But somewhere along the way, the list of obligations becomes a list of excuses. This is where another of our three rules to getting buttoned-up comes into play: learn to delegate effectively. Sure, I have bills to pay, but why can’t my husband help out? Yes, I’ve got an article to write, but why can’t I ask a co-worker for some assistance? Once you stop carrying such a heavy burden, holding on to every aspect of your life, and start learning how to delegate, you’ll suddenly start to find the time you said you didn’t have to exercise.’

Sarah on ‘Knowing Your Goals’

‘The secret to sticking to it is about goals, and making sure you set the right ones for yourself. Don’t set goals for yourself that make you too intimidated to even start. Instead of saying you want to run a marathon, start with saying you want to go to the gym 3 times a week. Instead of saying you want to be the size you were in high school, say you want to lose 5 pounds in a month. By setting realistic goals, you won’t be too intimidated to start trying to reach them, or too frustrated if you don’t reach them quickly.’

Let’s start getting you on the right exercise track. A few tips:

#1. Keep Track Of Your Progress
As much as we wish it were true, transformation doesn’t happen just by getting that gym membership. You need to set goals, plan how to reach them, and keep track of your progress. We use a cool thing called Fitness.doc, available at the Container Store or to help stay focused and on track. It’s got three sections: one for setting goals, one for food, and weight tracking, and one for tracking your exercise progress.

#2 Find and Exercise Buddy
It’s a lot harder to drop off your routine if you’ve got another person doing it with you. The added motivation of one more person helps keep you on track, plus you’ve got someone with whom you can be secretly (or not so secretly) competitive to see who is getting in better shape. When you add a partner to the mix, those New Year’s Resolutions quickly change from a chore, to something you actually look forward to.

#3 Once a Week Peace of Mind
When you work up a good sweat, you often find peace of mind. But when you’re juggling many different responsibilities it can be difficult to get in a decent, hour-long workout. But it is possible to do at least once on the weekend. Many have found that first thing Saturday morning is the best time. If you have children, you might even see if you can alternate watching the kids one weekend morning with your spouse so that each of you gets one day to recharge with a proper workout.