“I don’t have time to do the usual, so I’ll do nothing.”

Let’s suppose you’ve gotten started in a workout routine. You are doing 30 minutes of something (walking? jogging? biking?) four times per week.

Then comes a week when there’s an extra event here, there’s something going on there. You’re looking at your calendar saying, “I don’t have time to exercise.”

(We could paraphrase that into, “These other things that are going on are more important than my health and well-being.” But I digress.)

Instead of ditching exercise altogether, you could do less, break it up, or do something else.

do less: If you’re normally doing 30 minutes but you don’t have 30 plus time to shower, do 20 minutes. Or 15 minutes. Ten minutes is better than no minutes.

break it up: Can you squeeze in 10 minutes here and there instead of 30 minutes straight? What about 15 minutes first thing in the morning and 15 minutes at lunch?

do something else: If you’re not able to do either of the above with whatever your normal routine is, can you do something different? If your routine is typically cardio, can you do bodyweight exercises (strength training) this week? Instead of an evening jog, can you take a walk at lunch? Instead of 1000 meters in the pool, can you bike to work?

If you are honest, there are very few days when absolutely nothing will fit. Remember that if absolutely nothing else, exercise is an excellent counter-measure against stress, and if your schedule is over-booked, you’re probably stressed.

What do you do when you’re “too busy”?

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Michelle on 21 September 2010 at 07:41

    Do you have a way to listen to my thoughts? 🙂 It’s like you’re speaking to me. Scary.

    When I’m too busy – I cut something else out, if I can. I make sacrifices where I can, because I’m not willing to let this go. And, if I can’t get to the gym and/or make a change to my routine to incorporate something because I legitimately have conflicts I can’t get out of, I don’t sweat it.

    However, I also make sure that this reprieve I give myself isn’t the start of a “well, since I didn’t make the workout yesterday, I won’t go today either” mentality. Very easy to do. So, I make promises to myself, and this helps me to get back at it as soon as possible. I also count on my kids for accountability – if I promise them we are going to the gym and we don’t, I hear about it. It’s a lot harder to explain to a 4 and 8 year old why you aren’t working out than it is to justify the reasons to yourself.

    • You touched on two really important things: 1-sometimes “no time” is legit, and not beating yourself up about it is important; 2-it’s just for that specific conflict, not that day and the next day and the next day and …

      That’s excellent that your kids hold you accountable for going to the gym (and that you let them!)!

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