When There's Not Enough Time
What better time to write this blog post than on the one day of the year that we all lose an hour. I need to be honest. Not long after I wrote my first blog post, sharing about my dedicated commitment to my glorious morning routine, life quickly shifted. Nap time disappeared. For any parent, you know the heartbreak that this brings. For those not familiar, basically overnight, both my morning routine and my two hour built-in break from mom-ing each day just vanished.
And in their place was a toddler asking for milk at 5:30AM and piles of laundry and dishes that suddenly had no time to be done. Exercise?! For as much as I promote healthy movement and boy do I love it, it quickly fell down a few pegs on my priority board.
I spent all of January, and a good part of February, complaining about this new lifestyle that had been thrown on to me. I was so mad. I was so frustrated. I was so disappointed! And then it suddenly hit me that complaining wasn't going to help me figure out how to get my work-outs in.
And it definitely wasn't going to help me get my toddler to magically sleep. Once I finally got tired of listening to myself complain, I decided a new plan was needed.
Enter: new mindset.
I decided to be willing to, for this season at least, give up structure. My beautiful, beloved structure. I made peace with the fact that, for now, it was gone. In it's place, I decided, needed to grow a greater sense of flexibility and creativity. And most of all, perhaps, was a lot more grace.
I wrote down on paper what my new daily "schedule" was looking like, and tried to find new pockets of time that maybe I didn't notice before. I am NOT a evening exerciser, usually, but that was the big obvious space in my schedule that stared right back at me. Other down times in the day were our daily bath routine at night and the time in the afternoon where we watched a cartoon and had a snack...I decided maybe I could survive missing the latest Paw Patrol episode if it meant getting some movement in.
So here's what I've been doing: During bath time each night, I do some planks, mat exercises that can fit in a hallway, and some squats. It doesn't seem like much, but doing this every night, I can already feel my strength building! During cartoon time, I get on the floor to do more mobility and stretching (and hope my toddler doesn't think I'm inviting him to play WWE). And at night *sigh* I have hopped on my treadmill and gone for a light jog or walk, while catching up on my latest favorite reality TV show. There are some nights I am way too tired to do anything but fall into bed, and on those nights, and I've decided to be okay with that, too. Grace, right? The key is I'm still making movement a priority in my life, but in this season, it just looks different.
Honestly, I miss my morning routine. I am a morning person by nature, and for me, I really enjoyed that burst of energy that came with starting my day with movement. But...I do see how this shift in mindset has brought me some good things, too. Finding new times and ways to workout has helped me (well, forced me) to create new goals for myself that I didn't have before. I haven't run in years, and I forgot how much I enjoyed it. And timing my planks each night has been a really fun new challenge-I forgot just how hard those are!
When we feel like there just isn't enough time for exercise, it's maybe a good time to adjust our mindset. Let go of perfection, or what we think exercise is "supposed" to look like. Let go of the 1 hour workouts. Look for the spaces in your day where you can get creative. Once I stopped complaining, this new approach actually helped me to get excited about new goals and
challenges, and it really gave my daily workouts the refresher that maybe they needed!
I'm still going to hope for my morning routine to come back-and I'm sure someday it will-but I'm grateful for the new skills that this season is pushing me to build.
If you're struggling to find time for exercise in your day, I hope this has encouraged you! And I hope you know that you are very much not alone. A majority of my current clients are VIRTUAL private clients that pop-in weekly for a 30 minute pilates session. These sessions can be just pilates mat, or you may also add weights as well (really whatever props you have at home!) to create a full-body workout customized for you. You'd be amazing how great you can feel in just 30 minutes! If this sounds like a good fit for your busy schedule, please reach out and let's chat more. I'd love to help you make time for movement in your day-it really can make all the difference.
For more info, please contact me at: info@marystarpilatescom