I have so far still been unsuccessful in my search for an additional six hours in the day but as promised, the second I find the hours I will for sure share this with all of you. I have made a lot of changes to my lifestyle and routine in order to maximize the time available to me and save time whenever possible and one of the changes I have had to make is to somehow fit my workout into my day.
When I first started working out a few years ago, I was single with no kids and had nothing but free time. I would work out for an hour after work and still have time to cook myself dinner, watch an episode or two of America’s Next Top Model, talk on the phone to friends or my boyfriend at the time and even maybe go out to dinner…on a school night. Fast forward to present day, I work an hour away from my house, have a husband and kid and if I can fit in half an episode of the Real Housewives of New York when I leave work, pick up my son from school, make him eat his dinner (yes I said make, everyday is a struggle to get him to eat), help him with homework, pack up my lunch for the next day, laundry and put my son to bed, its a lucky day in my life.
In spite of this crazy schedule, I still managed to fit in an hour for my workouts because the alternative of not working out at all was not an option for me. The issue I encountered however, was that if I had to work late this threw off my entire schedule and by the time I came home I would be too exhausted to workout for an hour. So on those days I would workout for thirty minutes instead because I was determined to make my workout fit into my schedule. But with working out after work, I was always in danger of missing a day because of how unpredictable the work day can be and the only thing that would keep me from not postponing my workout was my motivation for being fit and healthy.
Then it occurred to me one day— why not exercise first thing in the morning instead. This way I got the workout out of the way and I don’t have to worry about it for the rest of the day. Shaun T and Jillian Michael’s, my favorite trainers had plenty of pretty intense thirty minute workout programs where you worked just as hard as you would for an hour so this would work perfectly. I set my alarm for an alarming 4 a.m. and excited to have a plan of action I went to bed. Well, let me tell you, it is all well and good to talk about waking up at 4 a.m. when you’re awake and pumped up to have a plan, but actually getting out of bed at that ungodly hour is another matter altogether.
That first week, the only thing that got me out of bed was my motivation, not wanting to fail and knowing I would be disappointed in myself if I didn’t get my butt out of bed. I found out though, that getting out of bed is the hardest part. Once I’m up I am good to go. So every day, I would get out of bed half asleep, wear my workout clothes and workout and every day I would be so proud of myself for following through and not giving up.
I’ve been doing this for five years now and yes, it has definitely gotten easier to wake up that early and my body is used to being up and I wake up now even before the alarm goes off. I would be lying if I said that some days it doesn’t take all the motivation I have in me to get out of bed but I can tell you with all honesty that the only days I don’t get up that early to workout are if I am sick, I don’t have work that day or I am taking a muscle break.
Knowing that at the end of the work day, I don’t have to worry about getting my workout in, is the most awesome thing and I can use that time for something else. It is a sacrifice to wake up at 4 a.m. to exercise but it is a sacrifice I am willing to make because my health and fitness are important to me and should be to you as well.
Follow me on Instagram: @fitinstilettos