I’m really excited today, because it’s time to share a new series that I’ve been thinking about for a while. You may remember that my word for this year is Balance. It’s something that I’ve been working hard on this year; sometimes I get it right, something I don’t.
With so much going on, how do you balance fitness & life?
I think this is something many of us are working on, so I want to get different perspectives on how others approach it. My hope is that if we discuss our experiences with this balancing act here, we can learn from each other! Especially as we are getting close to the holiday season (Halloween is just over a month away), this seems very relevant to me.
Starting next week, I have some amazing women with different backgrounds and goals lined up to share their thoughts with you. Today, I’ll get things started with my own perspective.
To me, fitness is just part of life. It’s one of the things that helps me have the energy for everything else I want to (and have to) do. As crazy as it sounds, I have MORE energy to tackle a day at work or a day of vacation in a new city if I stay active.
During the times in my life that fitness has taken a backseat, I can feel that energy draining out of me over time. So, with fitness being such an important part of my life, I need to find ways to keep things in balance so it’s doesn’t get pushed to the bottom of the list or become a chore.
Here are 5 tips that help me balance fitness & life:
1. Find Your Motivation
Not everyone likes the same things. Shocking, I know! That means that just because I like to run, doesn’t mean you should necessarily run too. You have to find what motivates you. What works for your friend, may not work for you. Don’t be afraid to try something new if what you’re doing isn’t inspiring or fun for you!
When I see my motivation slip over a period of time and I’m feeling worn out, it’s my indication that it might be time for a new goal! This is one of the reasons I decided to train for a fitness competition. Triathlon and running weren’t keeping me going as they usually do, so a change was welcome. It got me excited about working out again. Does that mean that every workout is exciting and fun? NO! But most of them are good and I feel awesome when I’m done.
2. Plan Ahead
Once you’ve found something fun & motivation, plan it into your schedule. Just like you schedule meetings at work, coffee dates with friends, and date nights with your spouse – plan your fitness!! Block off time on your calendar & stick to it. You’ve probably heard this before…so start doing it!
3. Enlist Friends
This is one of my favorite way to balance fitness & life – enlist your friends to join you! Fitness can be part of your social calendar if you want it to. How about a day hike with your girlfriends, instead of meeting up for lunch. In Atlanta, we would schedule bike rides with friends and then all go to get food & drinks after the ride. This is also a GREAT thing to do with your spouse – “the couple who trains together, stays together”.
4. Plan Rest Time
I know some people ascribe to the year-round training philosophy, but I am not one of them. I think planning at least one week a year that you DO NOT work out, is good for you! It gives your body & mind a reset. It’s also a great way to really relax & enjoy a vacation – I love to take a week off when we travel. Now, I also love to see a new city while running, so not every vacation is a rest from training. These little breaks also help make you eager to get back to workouts when they are over.
5. Cut Yourself Some Slack!
Finally, if fitness is really part of your life, perfection is not expected or possible. I know sometimes you are training for an event that takes dedication to a schedule, but realize that LIFE HAPPENS. If you expect perfection, you beat yourself up when things don’t go exactly to plan. One missed workout will not derail you! So shrug it off and move on. Just don’t make it a habit.
So that’s my thoughts on fitness, life, and balancing it all! I hope you found a tidbit in my thoughts that will help you find more balance in your own life. And I hope you are excited to hear more perspectives on this in the coming weeks!
Questions for you:
Does your workout make you smile?
Do you take a rest week during the year?