I really think one of the biggest challenges with living a healthy life is finding how you can fit it all in. Working out, cooking healthy meals, spending time on yourself… it’s all SO important, but also, time intensive and exhausting! Some days it’s so much more appealing to forget it all, and curl up on the couch and pretend that equals a healthy lifestyle.
Over the years, I’ve found some things that work for me for finding a way to fit it all in (especially when it comes to juggling a full-time job, marathon training and still having a social life).
Finding time to work out
This is by far one of the most challenging things; some days there simply isn’t time (hi early morning work meeting followed by client/work dinner to get home at 10 p.m., exhausted) and other days… you just aren’t feeling it. I like to schedule out what my workouts will look like before the work week starts; that way, if I know that I’m going to have a crazy busy day, I’ll make that a rest day. I also try to balance between waking up early for workouts and running after work; I know that Mondays are harddd for me to get up, so why torture myself by getting up super early?
During ultramarathon training, I also learned the art of two-a-days. These are amazing. Sometimes getting up at 4:30 a.m. to run 12 miles before work is not that appealing, but doing 5 miles before work and 7 miles after? Totally doable.
And lastly, sometimes it’s about getting something in. If you have 20 minutes, you could do a tempo run for 10 minutes and weight training for 10 minutes. Something is better than nothing, always.
(I also believe that marathon training plans are built out to be as long as they are because it takes into account how “life” things come up… that sometimes you won’t get all of your workouts in, but that’s okay, because you have other weeks to make up for it. I’m not sure if this is true, but it makes sense in my head. Haha.)
Spending time on yourself
This is also a hard one to squeeze in because I feel like with how busy things are in today’s world, you sometimes need to schedule this in — and it’s the first thing that goes when things get crazy. I count spending time on yourself as something that you’re doing for you — like going for a solo run, reading a book, meditating, getting your nails done (hehe, my favorite).
Spending time on yourself is *not* cruising through social media or the internet. I think it’s good to take a break from technology and truly step away from everything.
So, how do you fit it in when things get busy? Again, like working out, even 15 minutes does wonders. Step out of work for a break and walk around the parking lot (used to do this a lot in Austin) for 15 minutes, sans phone. Spend 15 minutes before bed reading a book. Schedule an appointment in your calendar to get your hair or nails done, or some other activity to pamper yourself.
Getting enough sleep
I’m not sure about you, but when I get stressed, it makes it harder to sleep and get good quality sleep. My mind runs a million miles a minute and it’s hard to relax enough to fall into a deep sleep. There are a few things I’ve done to make sure that when it’s time to go to sleep, I can turn off my mind and maximize that time:
- Turn off the phone – it’s so tempting to lay in bed and scroll through email, Facebook, you name it. Nope, put your phone on the night table or wherever you put your phone, and leave it there. (For the longest time, I was reading political news on my phone, in bed, before bed. Yeah, that didn’t go well… I ended up so riled up that it would take me for-ev-er to go to sleep.)
- Only sleep in your bed – This is one of the things I read about years ago, and try to skip reading in bed or watching TV from bed. It makes a difference because you “train” your body to know that when you lay down, it’s lights out.
- Find a way to turn off your mind – Count sheep, meditate, whatever it takes to truly clear your mind so that you can go to sleep. Sometimes I count backwards in 3s or 4s (starting at a random number like 983) or focus on my breathing (I’ll breathe in and out slowly and count each in and out as one, counting up as long as I’m awake). I’ve never made it to 0 or past the number four for breathing.
Drinking enough water
I’ve mentioned this a few times these past few weeks, but I’ve been TERRIBLE at drinking water lately. I’m not quite sure why, but it’s not like it used to be… I used to have a goal to drink 32 ounces by 10 a.m., and now I’m lucky to have one glass.
Carrying water with you everywhere helps me quite a bit, along with doing some fruit infusion. I also drink La Croix or Polar as a “treat” if I hit my goal (and it still counts as water!). And my new favorite app, Plant Nanny, has honestly been helping me the most. It’s a work in progress everyday, just like everything about fitting it all in to live healthy. 🙂
Eating all the veggies
Don’t get me wrong, I love my vegetables… but somedays, it’s REALLY hard to get all of the servings in. Especially when I’m on the go and grab a PROBAR Meal for lunch.
Something I’ve recently tried and love Effervescent Greens from Amazing Grass. These are little tabs that you drop in a glass of water, and BAM, you have a full serving of greens and veggies! So if you know it’s going to be a day where healthy eating is a little bit harder due to whatever you may have going on, just slip these in your bag and you got it covered.
(P.S. Use code SweatPink to save 40% on your purchase at Amazing Grass! I personally love the Amazing Grass Evervescent Greens Berry flavor the best!)
PLUS, it’s like a 2fer –> you get that water intake, too! 🙂
What do you think is hardest when you’re trying to fit it all in?
Any other tips for fitting it all in?
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