On One Hand… The desire to perspire is not your downfall. You love everything about exercise and working out: that feeling of accomplishment, that sense of strength, that hurts-so-good burn you feel after a set of sumo squats. Your closet holds more Lululemon than Loubiton, more dry-fit than diamonds, and screams Sporty Spice way louder than it does runway-ready. Basically, you’ve got motivation for days and fitness running through your bloodstream.
On the other hand… You’re a career gal, too. Or maybe a hardworking mama. Or maybe a multipassionate spirit who just cannot keep her hands off every new opportunity that comes her way. That sense of strength and fiery passion you cultivate in the gym definitely applies to the rest of your life as well – which is rad! – but usually means that something’s gotta give. And that “something,” unfortunately, needs to be your workout. Or does it?
The Balance: Fitting in fitness as a busy gal is only a challenge if you allow it to be one. Yes, really. The more we tell ourselves we have no time, the more we start to believe it and the less likely we are to spot those hidden pockets in the day which hold more than enough time for a good sweat. With a few solid strategies and a couple of choice mind games, you’ll be rocking that strong mind and bod all the way from the Bosu to the boardroom and still have time to get those other to-dos to-done. But that’s a whole other Balancing Act…
Early birds: play with time.
Are you a semi-early bird who hates working out in the dark? We get it. Just because you’re drained by nightfall doesn’t mean exercising during your peak hours is a moot point. A 9AM workout would be fantastic, but sometimes it’s just not available to us. We know from experience: in order to form lasting habits, you need to make the process the most enjoyable as possible. Slowly train yourself to get up earlier by increments of 10 minutes, then blast your favorite Pandora or Spotify station to help you join the land of the living. If the dark is throwing you off, tell yourself it’s 6PM, not 6AM as you hit the pavement or jump into the gym. The idea that the world has already been awake for an entire day can trick you into perking up and seizing the moment. We know it sounds silly – but it works!
Night Owls: change your scenery.
On the other hand, sometimes it’s the night owls that have the most trouble fitting in fitness – you get most of your physical energy in the evening, but work, family, and life obligations beckon just as you’re getting your first wind. Look around: are there gyms or studios near the places your obligations take place? Do you have a 24-hour or late-night facility available to you? Take a drive and explore; is there a park or particular street that lends itself to a jog or some plyo? You might not be able to fit in your go-to workout routine, but just by changing your scenery to accommodate the rest of your lifestyle, you know you’re getting in something…and knowing you, it’ll be good.
Workaholics: Take a (lunch) break.
It’s been said before, but we’ll say it again (because it’s true): a midday power workout can do wonders for your bod and for your business. Pack a lunch or store snacks in your desk, and instead use your lunch break to fit in whatever you can. Maybe you only have 15-30 minutes and no gym in sight. Take a super-brisk walk! Don’t think about where you’re going, just go. If you have a bit longer or can fit it in, maybe a run or even a gym quickie can work for you. Pack a pair of workout clothes, do a functional ‘do, and take whatever time you have to go hard at whatever exercise you love. Bonus: the extra oxygen will get you through that midday slump and boost your productivity and enthusiasm.
Small Wonder: Commit to shorter, harder workouts.
Commit to a 15 minute workout to begin. If you have more time and more energy, great! But the less daunting the task seems, the more likely you are to actually follow through. Hard-core fitness aficionados might be giving us the side-eye on this one, but trust us when we say you can accomplish almost every fitness goal you have with quality as opposed to quantity. Pick three exercises and see how many times you can (safely!) perform that circuit in 15 minutes. Or if today is a cardio day, steal one of our gym-quickie runs and go breathless.
People Who Need People: Build A Community.
Even if you’re the type who likes to fly solo when she sweats, a sense of community can be what gets you going when you feel like you have no time to think, let alone exercise. Choose a bustling gym, a path that other runners love, or a class with a high-energy and positive instructor. Just knowing that you’re not alone in your quest to fit in fitness as a busy gal can be the thing that gets you forming healthy habits. Prefer to have silence and space while you sweat? Make a pact with a close friend that you’ll text each other after your workouts every week. You’ll feel proud of your friend when she smashes that 5K goal, and you’ll feel supported when you report back that you completely killed that set of jumping lunges. Win win!