Most of us struggle with trying to balance family, work and fitness in our daily routines. All-to-often we put our family’s needs above taking care of our own personal health because we feel they deserve it. (Spoiler alert: you do, too!) And at other times, we feel the need to prioritize work and customer relationships because that’s just part of life. This tricky juggling act can make it easy to drop the ball on health and fitness by letting those demands take priority over our personal needs.
Fortunately, it is possible to find the right balance to making your wellness a priority with these three tips!
If I haven’t scheduled something out on my calendar, then it just doesn’t happen. This same concept can be used to schedule your workouts on your calendar - just like any other appointment - and is one of the best ways to make sure you have the time available to get it done. Not only does this strategy keep you from scheduling another event at the same time as your workout, it also reminds you of your upcoming break from the stresses of everyday life.
Put it into action: Try adding your personal workout time on your calendar for one full week and don’t let anything take its place! If you find this proposed schedule does not work for you and your family without having to make sacrifices, then try a different schedule the following week.
So much of how we treat our health and wellness is based on the perception of what self-care looks like. If you find you’re having to force yourself to set time aside to workout, only to trudge through a grueling routine you despise… while glancing at the clock every 30-seconds to see if it’s over yet, then let’s change that mindset. Having a positive attitude towards your health is essential for enjoying what you’re doing, knowing why you’re doing it and sticking with it over the long-term. Do you find an hour of going beast mode and sweating-it-out under heavy weights invigorating? Or would you prefer to attend a yoga class to calm your mind and soothe your soul? The more you view your workouts as something which enhances the overall quality of your life, the more likely you are to stick with it.
Put it into action: Find a workout which makes you feel good about yourself once you’re done, and gives you something to look forward to. And if you haven’t found your ideal workout yet, try something new to get a feel for the movement first! Many gyms offer free or discounted trials before you join as a member which would give you the opportunity to try a class.
Lots of people shy away from making workouts a priority because they don’t feel like they know what they are doing or don’t have a plan. Having a plan ahead of time is important so you won’t waste time thinking about what you should do once you’re at the gym, or feel frustrated and end up not working out - at all. A few solutions to remedy this are to have a simple routine plan in mind to follow, join a group class, or hire a personal trainer to teach and motivate you.
Let’s be realistic and admit sometimes Plan A doesn’t work out. Maybe you arrived at the gym a little later than usual only to find every free weight and weight machine is occupied, your favorite group instructor has a sub, or your personal trainer is sick and had to cancel. It’s OK to move onto your Plan B which will take the guesswork, hesitation and possible avoidance out of your workout!
Put it into action: If you’re using a calendar to schedule your workouts (see Tip #1!) try adding notes about the specific routine you anticipate performing, along with quality substitutes in case you don’t have full access to equipment, or your best gym buddy can’t join you.
Finding that balance takes time and practice, but if you’re having trouble making your health and fitness a priority then start small and try these three tips to help get you started and keep you going. Remember that building a long-term, successful workout routine into your overall lifestyle doesn’t happen overnight, so just take it one day, one choice and one moment at a time!