It is not always easy, or should I just put it right out there and say it is not easy to find time to work out and get on a schedule. I used to always struggle with making time. My workouts suffered, and would fall by the wayside as life got in the way. Working out on a consistent schedule really didn’t occur for me until last summer when I started training for the Chicago Marathon.
What changed? I figured out how I needed to re-arrange my life to make workouts a priority without taking away from being a Mama, Wife, Employee, etc. I discovered ways to motivate myself when I didn’t want to get out of bed. I started discovering how much better I felt after working out and wanted to feel that way more and more. It felt good; I felt like I had energy and was seeing progress after a while.
- Figure out why you want to run or workout? Make a list of all of the positive benefits that will come from working out.
- Create an easy goal that is within reach in the next month if you stuck to a workout plan. Maybe it is to run a mile, to be able to play with the kids without needing to rest, to lose 5 lbs. Whatever you think you could accomplish after a month of working out however many times a week you are capable of.
- Make a list of your excuses, what has held you back in the past? Once you have your list, take a good look at it. You can have every excuse in the book if you want to. They are easy to make up. We both know that the excuses will get you nowhere. You can overcome them with a few simple tricks though, and stop letting them become an easy way out.
- Find a time that works for you and the days you want to work out. If for now it is 1x a week that is great! Start small and manageable. If you have not been following a routine, do not attempt to work out 6 days a week right off the bat. You can always build on it later. For me, the best time to work out is in the morning before work. Yes, 5 or 5:30 am. I developed that habit over the summer. Not that I like to roll out of bed that early, but I like how it feels and I like having it out-of-the-way first thing! I take care of Mama first so Mama can take care of everyone and everything else in the day.
Alright, you now have a time and a date.
Figure out a plan and write it down. What do you want to do? If you are new to running check out a Couch to 5K or Jeff Galloway. Want to work out to a DVD? Find once that seems like fun and go for it.
Now, what to do when that excuse monster rears his ugly head? You know he will. He showed up at my house this past Sunday morning at 6am. I couldn’t sleep, but was nice and warm, and snuggly. The thought of traipsing downstairs in the cold to do Insanity did not sound like fun.
- Find a support network. Someone or a group of people to motivate you. This is a great way to stay accountable. Shout your goals to the world, and it is ok to be terrified of failure. We all are, but once they are out there you will push harder. Now, this support network can also be in the cyber world too! I follow so many inspirational people on Twitter and Facebook. At 5:30am, when I am laying in bed not wanting to venture from my warm blankets I just have to grab my phone from the nightstand and get some Twitter updates. There are always quite a few people announcing they are starting a workout or have just finished one. Talk about motivating, I may not know these people in real life, but as soon as I tweet my intentions and congratulate a few people on getting their workout on for the day I am motivated and ready to get it over so I can tweet I completed it. There are also many Facebook groups dedicated to pretty much everything, search for one that works for you, support the other members and they will return the love.
- Lay out your clothes and accessories the night before! My workout clothes are always laid out the night before. This is especially important if I am heading out for a group run as I would much rather be looking for a missing glove or something the night before, not the morning of. Hey, if you really need to sleep in your clothes. Also, it is kind of hard to keep ignoring them, waiting patiently for you to use them to work out in.
- Post the list of reasons why you should work out somewhere you will see every day. You can not have enough constant reminders. I have my home screen on my phone set with this Whole30 reminder showing me visually why I am doing what I am doing.
- If it was only that easy, right? I know it is not, but it is worth it. With constant positive thoughts and actions, sticking to a workout schedule will become second nature. It just takes time and perseverance.
What if you fail? According to Women’s Health, 78% of people who plan to hit the gym in the morning decide against it. I used to be one of them, but the more I kept getting up and getting out there, the easier it became. I cherish my morning workouts, they are quiet and I find my day goes much easier. If I wait till the evening so many other excuses come up.
Also, you will fail. We all do. But you know what you do? Accept it, figure out why, and move on. Tomorrow is another day.