Guest Post by Crystal Breaux, Your Fitness Designer
I remember my thoughts, very clearly as I as sat drinking coffee at 5:30 one morning. It was the week before I went back to work from maternity leave for my second child, Zach. I was now a family of four and remembered all of the words of friends and family who said, “two kids changes it up.”
As I sat there, I began to realize all of the things on my plate of life. I did a quick check list:
· Full time job
· New business
· Volunteer work at church
· New schedule with Hannah (my daughter) starting kindergarten
· New baby
How would I even find time to take care of my health with exercise, which I enjoyed. I wanted to keep it a priority and realized there were things I would have to take off my plate to make it happen.
· Saying “yes” to things before thinking it through
· Having my house perfectly cleaned and organized at the end of each day
· Working hard to make sure everything goes according to MY plan (that can really take up a lot of time)
· Less TV and internet time (social media)
I don’t think I am alone in feeling overwhelmed with life with no time to exercise consistently. I often hear women say, “I get started, but sticking with it is impossible.”
When life changes, I know I have to sit down and recreate a new fitness plan that I am able to maintain with a few steps and reminders.
Make it a priority
At some point, a decision has to be made that living healthy will be a priority. There will never be a time to do something if it is not REALLY important. Once health becomes a priority, we can see clearly what we need to let go to have more time.
Schedule a time for exercise that is realistic
Once it becomes a priority and a time is established, schedule it. Be specific for a time to exercise. For me, first thing in the morning has always been my favorite. Oh, the days before kids and crazy schedules, when I actually had 1.5 hours 6 days a week. That is so not realistic for me right now.
I still keep my early mornings, but realized instead of blowing it off because I no longer had 1.5 hour, I had to work harder in the 30-40 minutes I did have.
In other words, “when you can’t do what you want to do, do what you can do.” (A quote that has become a motto for my life.)
If trying to exercise at an unrealistic time of day that does not work for you or your family, it will be easy to quit. Find the extra time from the things you have decided to let go or put on hold.
Choose something that you enjoy and works for your schedule
Who cares if everyone you know is running, swimming, biking or you fill in the blank. If you don’t like it or it honestly does not fit into your personal schedule, it will never be something that can be maintained. Choose something that you like or at least can tolerate and could do long term. I recommend working up to 3 days of cardio, 1-2 days of strength and always seek a professional if beginning a new program.
Choose the right motivation
Our motivation changes with the season of life. Of course, in my 20’s, my only motivation was to look a certain way or to be the fittest. Today, if I tried to use that as a motivation to exercise, I would quit. Being the “fittest” is not a desire at this time in my life. What does motivate me is to be an example for my kids of good health, to have the fitness level to be active with my kids, to honor God by taking care of my body, and keep my mind healthy by reducing my stress that comes through exercise. We have to be sure we are choosing the right motivation to keep us going on the days we want to give up.
As women, we will go through so many seasons of life. We have to be willing to change our plans and find what personally works with a new motivation that fits where we are in life to make exercise a habit.
For more tips, email me to get my Top 10 Ways to Stick to Your Exercise Program at firstname.lastname@example.org. Place Top 10 Ways to Stick to and Exercise Program in the subject line, and I will send them straight to you.
As a licensed Wellness and Christian Life Purpose Coach for women, Crystal Breaux owns her own business, Your Fitness Designer. She coaches women how be fit on the inside and out by managing their time, eat healthy, exercise and discover God’s purpose for their life. She does this through individual (by telephone and face to face) group coaching, group classes, workshops and providing her Simple Designer Meals to make healthy eating at home easy.