We’re all busy, kids or no kids, working mom or working-at-home mom. And no matter our situation, taking care of ourselves is often the easiest thing to let slip. Over the years, though, I’ve learned that I’m a better colleague, employee, wife, friend, and now mom (also known as being a better person in general!) when I make time to work out. For me, it’s far and away the best form of stress relief and gives me the energy I need to propel me through some crazy days. Here’s how I fit it in:
I only do workouts I like. It’s easier to follow through that way. For example, sometimes I’ll do short yoga sessions at home, but an hour-long class in a studio would bore the pants off me (there I said it)….so I don’t even bother.
I wake up early. Sorry for this one, but it’s true. That said, I also make sure I get enough sleep so I have the energy for my time in the gym, so it’s also about balance.
I make every workout count. Sometimes I only have 30 minutes – or less – in the gym before work. There’s no plodding mindlessly on the elliptical or treadmill – I’m doing intervals with a resistance level or speed that’s high enough to be uncomfortable. The less amount of time I have, the harder my workout is. I also change it up so I’m not doing the same workout two days in a row, ensuring I have a good balance of cardio and strength.
I’m realistic about what I can accomplish in any given week. Most weeks I squeeze in 4-5 workouts. Sometimes it’s more like 3 though, especially if I have a lot of early morning meetings. And that’s perfectly OK. I spend a few minutes on Sunday evening reviewing my schedule for the week and plotting out when I can realistically work out and then…
…I make working out non-negotiable. Like spending time with my kid and husband, going to work, pumping while I’m away from my kid, and eating; exercise for me is not a choice that I can opt out of. I don’t even give myself the option because it’s that important to me (the whole being a better version of myself thing).
Any other secrets, fellow busy women?