So you want to feel and look better, have more energy and all the other benefits of exercise. But there is one thing getting in your way: you’re busy! We all hear ourselves saying we’re busy when we catch up with friends. “How are you?” “Oh, I’m so busy.” But “busy” is not something you hear from high achievers who are probably busier than most but still find the time to exercise.
We all get the same 168 hours per week — Oprah, Bill Gates, that mother down the street with four kids. So how do some people with a full family, work and social life still find time to exercise?
Simple, it’s important to them. Here are a few tips to bump up the priority of exercise so you realize you do have time!
Know your why
We often procrastinate when we haven’t connected to the reason we’re exercising in the first place. Ask yourself: “What is the goal I’m looking for with my exercise and why is this important for me now?” Think about how your life will be different when you achieve it. What feelings will you have? What will your energy be like? Write out your why and put it somewhere you can see it everyday as a gentle reminder.
Adjust your happiness thermostat
We all have a level of happiness that we’re accustomed to. We have ups and downs but inevitably we return to our unique level. But if the hard work of exercising and being fit and healthy pushes our thermostat too high, we may find ways to sabotage our efforts. To adjust your thermostat, practice gratitude by writing down five things you’re grateful for everyday that are boosted by being fit and healthy and focus on why they’re so great. This simple activity will crank up that happiness thermostat and you’ll begin to believe that you deserve to be fit and healthy.
Make a date
It’s easy to put energy and time into other people, things or work. We put ourselves last only to end up drained, stressed and resentful. Make yourself a priority by scheduling all your workouts at the beginning of the month, block out all your workouts in your calendar and book your appointments around them. Tell your colleagues and clients not to call you when you’re likely to be training. Make a date with that very special person, you!
Foolproof your environment
Minimize petty excuses like not having your gym bag or forgetting your towel. Want to hit the gym after work? Have a gym bag in the car. Want to move first thing in the morning? Have your exercise gear of choice next to the bed and get into it before you have time to make an excuse!
Keep it short and sweet
Forget hours of treadmill dread! If you think you have to spend hours torturing yourself, you’ll put your workout into the “too hard basket.” Shorter bouts of high intensity exercise have been proven to get great results. Check out HIIT or Tabata training. You’ll see that indeed less is more!
Get clear on why you want to exercise and set yourself up to succeed. Then you can really get busy. That kind of busy that leads to the best version of you!