If I had a dollar for every time someone told me that they would work out, if only they had the time, I could have retired years ago in the Caribbean. It is a common problem and even people who are completely dedicated to the craft can struggle fitting exercise into their schedules. Lives change, schedules change, and day to day activities seem to consume every minute of the day.
Simply put, the only way to consistently make time to exercise is to have a predetermined period of time that is completely dedicated to that activity.
Free will is a wonderful idea. The ability to come and go as you please and make decisions in the moment is a fantasy most people dream about. Unfortunately, free will isn’t always the best option for people looking to be productive and efficient. One thing I’ve learned over the years is that people respond to structure. If your boss told you to come to work if you feel like it, companies would be folding left and right. Knowing exactly what time, what day, and what process is involved helps human beings structure their time and energy efficiently. Writing things down on paper also helps to give visual aid. Many successful people have their entire days charted out ahead of time to properly maximize each moment of their day. Life can be frustratingly volatile, so a schedule helps you to have some sort of control over your day.
Aside from free will, a common roadblock people have is becoming overwhelmed. Like most things in life, exercise is a process. You can’t get overwhelmed at the thought of the final product. If you were to see a before and after photo of a remodeled kitchen, you would be ignoring the painstaking process involved to get there. Sometimes a detailed, long term goal can deter a person because they think too much time and effort is involved. Instead, focusing on smaller short term goals has proven to be more effective. Instead of focusing on the 50 pounds you want to lose, start smaller with just making sure you schedule 3, 30 minute sessions your first week at the gym. Sit down and figure out where those 30 minutes can come from. You may notice small gaps in your day that may add up to a lot. Once the schedule is set, treat it like you would a doctor’s appointment, or work. Many successful athletes and trainers adopt a military style when it comes to training. Everything has an exact time and step in the process and there is no making excuses or cutting corners.
There is no magic formula to health and fitness. What I love most about it is you will get out of it what you put in. There is no hiding from it or masking your results. Science and medicine have proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that even a small amount of exercise a few times per week have both immediate and long lasting benefits. It’s easy to get bogged down by the day to day grind, but once you take the power back into your own hands, the rest falls nicely into place. Not every day or week will play out the same, but simply blocking and scheduling your exercise time will make the whole process much simpler. Exercising has endless physical and mental benefits and it’s worth dedicating even a small part of your day to your mind and body.
About the author: Justin Hall and his wife Lilia, are committed to helping others achieve healthy, happy and productive lifestyles. Find out more on their blog The Healthy Couple.
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