There’s just not enough time in the day. I hear this over and over. It’s time to throw away that excuse because you CAN find time in your day for exercise. I help my clients figure out how to make fitness a part of their daily lives even when they think it’s not possible. It’s just like anything else, you have to schedule it into your day or it will never happen. But, putting it in your schedule is just part of the equation. Try my 5 Step Process to develop a regular exercise routine:
Take out a piece of paper and write down your entire schedule (including weekends) from the minute you get up until the minute you go to bed. Now take a close look at it and answer the following questions:
- What time of day would you like to exercise?
- How can you be more time-efficient?
- Car pooling
- Meal planning
- Grocery shopping
- Can you find an extra 30-60 minutes in your day?
- Is there anything in your current schedule that you can get rid of?
- Can you get up 30 minutes early one or two days each week?
You don’t need to set aside 1-2 hours for exercise. There are some great routines that you can do in as little as 15-20 minutes! Create a basic schedule for yourself on certain days and times–like Spinning on Mondays and Thursday, strength training on Tuesdays and Saturdays, walking your dog every night after dinner.
Treat your scheduled time to exercise like a doctor’s appointment. It’s in your calendar. Protect it and guard it like you would other important events in your life. Every weekend, take the time to review your upcoming week to see conflicts you may have. Make the necessary changes to your schedule so you won’t disrupt your ongoing routine.
Make a commitment—to yourself and to someone else. If you make a commitment only to yourself, chances are you’ll let yourself down over and over. If you make a commitment to yourself AND your daughter, you’ll think twice before skipping your workout.
Make your lunch every day. You may be wondering what this has to do with sticking to an exercise program, but it’s really important. Taking your lunch to work gives you more time during lunch to MOVE! You may be able to get to the gym or go for a walk with some friends. You’ll be eating healthier AND saving a bundle by bringing a little brown bag to work. When you practice one healthy habit, it’s easier to adopt other healthy habits that all work together to make you look and feel better.
Right before you go to sleep, visualize your entire upcoming day. If you plan to go to a Body Pump class in the morning, picture yourself getting out of bed, getting dressed and going to the class. It’s amazing what this simple thought process will do for you. Trust me, just do it.
Follow these 5 Steps and you’ll be exercising on a consistent basis. If something comes up and you just can’t fit it in, don’t beat yourself up. Exercise, like brushing your teeth, is something you should do for the rest of your life. It’s okay to miss occasionally because you’ll fall right back into your routine. Be kind to your body and mind—take care of them and they’ll take care of you.
Move and Be Healthy,
This is so absolutely true for me. I think I can do all of them except bringing my lunch to work. You have to draw the line somewhere!
Sometimes your lunch is ready and in the fridge and you forget it! 🙂 Love you…
Molly, thanks for reminding me that exercise does fit into any schedule. I love step 4 and 5!
After having spent the past few months making baby food I’ve realized that every minute does count. While the kettle is boiling or my coffee is brewing I now put my snacks together for future lunches.
Another secret I’ve learned is when I’m up during the night instead of having my mind race- a few stretches, ab/back/pelvic floor exercises get accomplished and help me fall back asleep. I think I’ll throw my visualization in then too.
Thanks for the remotivation…off now to schedule my bodypump!
Those are great tips Tess! Thanks so much for sharing–and good for you for scheduling a body pump class into your busy day.
I love this! I’m still working on making daily exercise a habit. It is still a little hard somedays but just like getting enough water, I’m committed and it will get done one way or the other!
Remember you don’t have to exercise every single day. Give your body some well-deserved rest when necessary. And if you happen to miss for 3 or 4 days, know that it’s okay because you can get right back on your schedule. Thanks for your comment Elaine!
Molly – Your weekly blog hit me perfectly today – I am feeling so excited that I have an extra 30 minutes every morning to exercise before worknow that Hannah entered the middle school. Both girls actually left the house within 10 minutes of eachother today and I enjoyed a nice brisk walk with the dog.
What’s great is that you really appreciate those 30 minutes–and will use them to their full advantage. Please keep me up-to-date with your routine–I’m happy to help any way I can… 🙂
The first time I could exercise in the morning without having to wake up at 5 am! I am loving the freedom!
Great news! And school is in session too…and you can still fit it in. Keep up the good work…
As a mom I am always taking kids to practice each week. I schedule exercise into the time I wait. This way my workout is automatically scheduled into my routine. I just need help remembering to pack my shoes in the AM.
I suggest that you get an extra pair of shoes and leave them in the car. Then you’ll always have a pair and not have the extra stress of worrying whether or not you have them with you. Great tip about using waiting time to exercise! Thanks!
Chris and I got up early and went for a long walk this morning! It was nice seeing the sun come up. I was watching GMA (9/7/10) and saw that Good Housekeeping awarded two Boots No 7 products the best Anti Aging Serum and (tied) for best instant line filler. You recommended this product over a year ago. Just think how much younger I could be looking today if I had started using this product back then. Great Tip MOLLY.