I hear from people all the time who say they don’t have time to workout. I am not one to doubt someone’s word, but I think there are plenty of opportunities to squeeze in a workout if we are creative…and committed.
One day last week I had a crazy day and I found myself at back-to-back soccer practices for the kids. I had not thought ahead, and didn’t have running clothes on…and I was wearing Crocs. But I can walk in Crocs! So, grabbing the baby jogger that is always in my trunk, I plopped #8 (C.C) and #9 (Sam) in, and away we went. We walked the track around the soccer field for an hour. It was all I needed to get my heart rate up and get some kind of cardio workout in. I knew the next day was not going to be any easier. So when I got home from soccer, I called my friend, Susan, and we planned an early (5 a.m.) run for the following morning. On the day after that, which wasn’t any less chaotic than the previous two had been, I decided to fit in a strength workout at the gym over lunch (when #9 Sam went down for a nap). Since I had only 40 minutes, I used my little timer and did a set of six one-minute exercises three times through. It was quick and dirty, but effective… and that’s what I’m looking for.
I used to believe that a workout had to have certain characteristics…it had to be at least an hour, I had to sweat a lot, and it had to include mostly cardio, with a little strength training thrown in at the end. I finally realized however, that in order for that to work, I was going to be perpetually tired because, as a homeschooling mother of nine, there wasn’t any other time during the day to fit it in, except in the pre-dawn hours before the rest of the world got up! Once I reached my 40’s, that just wasn’t going to happen on a regular basis anymore. I like my sleep too much…Heck, I need my sleep too much!
So my perspective has changed. I no longer stress about fitting a workout into my busy life. I am committed to getting it done, and I look for opportunities to squeeze it in. This doesn’t mean I don’t plan. In fact, I have to think ahead. However, I have discovered that the challenge is almost as much fun as the workout itself. “When can I run today?”, “Is there a track at the field where the kids play soccer?”, “Can I walk with a friend while #7 (John) has his swim lesson?”, “Can I lift some free weights at home while #9(Sam) takes his nap?” Usually I find with a little effort and some cooperation from my kids, I can make it work. And because it changes everyday, I rarely get bored with an exercise routine. Maybe that’s because I don’t have a routine! But I can live with that; that’s my nine kid life…and I like it that way!
What do you do to fit in a workout in your busy life?