It’s no secret that changing your routine is a huge obstacle as far as getting in shape is concerned. Humans are creatures of habit and adding to or removing something from our day is often an uncomfortable task. So, until we can get to a point where we are used to working out regularly, it is always going to feel like a chore. But if we know that we have to make a habit of it, why do so many people still struggle to workout consistently?
The truth is that many people struggle with time management and prioritization. There are only so many hours in a day for us to manage, many of which can’t be manipulated (sleep and work). Therefore, the time we have left has to be managed well in order to fit in things like working out. Additionally, our priorities play a major role in determining what we choose to do with our time. So, if your goal is to include fitness in your routine and keep it there, some time management and prioritization is going to be key in your success.
Setting Your Priorities
We all have a hierarchy of priorities that we store subconsciously. These priorities heavily influence our decision making on a day to day basis. As such, the things that you spend most of your time on during the day are usually tied to the things you prioritize the most. For many people, this might include things like spending time with family, working hard at their job, having fun with friends, or even watching their favorite television show. In some way, these activities are associated with deeper priorities or values which they find most rewarding.
What is important to distinguish here is that conscious thought over what should be important and the subconscious manifestation of your priorities does not always match up. This is why so many people say they want to work out but don’t actually follow through with their good intentions. They know they should work out for some reason or another, but deep down it isn’t fulfilling any of their priorities. Because of that, they subconsciously will devote their time to other things that do fulfill their priorities.
So the key here is finding out what your priorities are and making sure they align with your fitness endeavors. Maybe your job is one of your highest priorities. In this case, think about how working out regularly will enhance your ability to do your job well. More energy, better mental clarity, and a generally better mood will certainly help you perform well at work. Another priority might be your family. While it may seem like your workout is pulling you away from that, think about how it will enhance your time. More energy and better fitness to play with your kids. Less lethargy and better mental presence. All of this will make for much better quality time with your family. Whatever your priorities, you have to think of what you are adding rather than what you are taking away.
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Knowing your priorities and how to tie them to your health and fitness is just part of battle. At the end of the day, you still have to find the time to fit a workout into your life. This is where you might have to analyze your life and find out where you can be more efficient. Often times we have more time than we may think when we really make use of every moment we have.
The most important things we have to consider is that a workout doesn’t have to take 2 hours or even an hour. When starting from scratch, a 20-40 minute workout is enough to get the job done. And doing this at home makes it even easier as far as time and effort is concerned. Consider waking up 40 minutes earlier to work out before you head to your job. That way you don’t have to worry about it after work and you’ll save time by avoiding a second shower. That’s just one example of how you can make your time more efficient and fit in some time for a good sweat session.
Weekends are also a better time for most people to get their workout on. If you know that you weekdays are more hectic, make time for your health on the weekend. A morning bike ride, run, or even a weight training session make for a productive start to the weekend. Not only will you feel good about yourself but you’ll have more energy for the rest of the day!
Lastly, you may consider the following helpful tips:
- Meal prep to save time on cooking during the week
- Utilize your lunch break for a long walk or gym session (especially if your workplace has a gym)
- Set reminders on your phone to workout
- Install an app on your phone that sends you messages about why you are working out.
- Pay other people to do time consuming chores so that you can have more time for a workout
- Involve your kids! (Use them as added resistance or let them follow along)
There is no doubt that making your fitness a priority can be a difficult task. But a few tweaks to the way you think about your workout can make a world of difference. Take the time to figure out how working out will enable you to do more of the things you prioritize most in this world. Everything from you job, to family, and even your social life can be improved by staying in shape. This will make it all the easier to stay motivated and keep fitness in your daily routine.
Additionally, you’ll need to make sure that you employ some time saving techniques in order to make room for your training. Find out where you may be wasting some time unnecessarily and use that time for your training instead. Another way to ensure you can work out is to purchase some equipment for your home. That way you don’t have to waste time driving to the gym but you still get in a great workout. In the end it comes down to setting priorities and making the time. Hopefully the tactics outlined in this article will help you live the fitness lifestyle!