I’ve been a project management, time management, process oriented, efficiency junky for as long as I can remember. I analyze my day, my week, my month, my year to figure out when I am at my best. You can bet it is not after 9 pm any day! Like my dear Dad, I am one of those ‘early bird gets the worm’ kind of people, much to the chagrin of my sister who likes her morning zzzzz’s and would get annoyed with my bright eyes and bushy tail. My day usually starts at 5 am. So that means by 9 pm, I am ready for bed.
When are you at your best?
I had a friend once who said I get more done before 9 am than most people get done all day. The problem is, by 11 am I am beat. LOL. Nonetheless I look for ways I can be more productive and that means timing is everything.
I try not to schedule appointments first thing in the morning. This is my time TO DO stuff. Whether I am working on a sewing or scrapbooking project, planning our meals and grocery list for the week, getting creative on that piece of furniture I’m going to refinish or working on projects for my valuable customers, the morning is the time for me to get it done.
So that means if I want to be successful in getting stuff done in other parts of my day, I have to get creative.
I’ve even gone so far as to look at the days of the week and the weeks of the months for my likelihood of success.
Exercising has been one of those love-hate tasks. I love how I feel after I go, I hate the idea of going. I am most motivated the first of the week. Forget about exercising after Wednesday any week. I recently read ‘exercise because you love your body, not because you hate it’ and that really hit home for me. That helped get my heart in the game, but I was still struggling with how to fit exercise into my life to be successful. There’s so much to consider- what type of exercise, when, how long, where, how hard to push it. I have this ‘if you’re going to go, you might as well go all the way’ attitude and I think that leads me to set unrealistic goals. Plus I keep forgetting I’m not 20 years old anymore! Drat.
What Are the Times of Day You are at Your Best?
Are you a ‘morning person’ or a ‘night owl’? As I mentioned, I’m a morning person. For years I had tried to exercise in the morning. Hey that’s when I’m at my best right? Wrong. At least wrong for exercising success and what about when the weather changes? You can be guaranteed that the very first day the temperature dips below 50, I am NOT getting out of bed, let alone out of bed to go for a walk!
I’m cheap so I don’t love having a gym membership and the few times I’ve tried them, I have been unsuccessful. Where I live I do have access to three gyms. So I don’t need a membership. That’s a bonus, but I still need to figure out what works.
I also had an a-ha moment recently while on a customer call. Somehow John and Wayne from Turf Fashions and I got on the topic of exercising. I referenced a co-worker who runs on his lunch break and John said that Wayne exercises before he goes home. Hmmm I hadn’t tried THAT one before probably bc I am usually starving during my 35 minute commute.
In Florida, the problem with exercising outside on lunch is you sweat most months, or you get rained on. I don’t have time to eat, exercise AND shower at lunch. Plus even though I am not actually allergic to anything seasonal, I do have allergy-related symptoms when I exercise outside.
For months I’ve had ‘Starling Club’ (one of the gyms in my community) on my calendar for 7 pm. The trouble is, I get home, cook some food and get comfy on the couch with my Pumpkin kitty curled up in my lap and my favorite show on Netflix. You can forget about me going anywhere, let alone to the gym!
Are There Days of the Week that You Are More Motivated for Certain Activities?
Are there certain days of the week you are more motivated for certain activities? I am more motivated to eat pizza on Friday, do laundry on Saturday and cook on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and maybe Wednesday. By Thursday, I am sick of following a schedule, to do list and holding myself accountable. I just want to go with the flow by Friday.
I’ve also noticed I am more motivated to exercise on Mon, Tue and Wed. That’s not what the experts recommend! I know. I don’t care. I’m aiming for success here. I have previously tried exercising Mon, Wed, Fri and that Friday never happened.
My 30 -Day Challenge
Is there a point to this story? YES! Here’s my point….
After years of analyzing, I finally figured out what works for me for exercise success. I set a 30-Day Challenge to:
- Wear a FitBit One EVERY day
- Mon, Tue and Wed walk 30 mins at lunch AND
- Mon, Tue, Wed walk 30 mins after work at the gym.
- During lunch, I walk in a large, climate controlled storage room. I vary the direction of the route and use figure-8’s so I don’t get dizzy!
- Have a snack ready for after work to prevent getting hangry.
- Bring my favorite show with me to watch on Netflix from the gym and some music to listen to at lunch.
- Now I also like to track what I’m eating. So I rejoined Weight Watchers Online and tracked my points EVERY day, no matter how bad it was. I did not swap fitness points for food points.
- I had attended a seminar put on by Spectrum. They said:
- ‘Trust the process’
- ‘Throw away the scale.’
- ‘Redefine success.’
- so I weighed myself on the first day and the last day. THAT’S IT!
- I put ’30-Day Challenge’ on my calendar and reminders Mon, Tue and Wed at lunch and after work.
When Life Gets in the Way
I think a lot of time, we get so focused on our goal that when life gets in the way, we fall off the wagon and quit. We have to remember to give ourselves some grace. Sometimes, life is going to get in the way and when that happens, we need to keep on keeping on.
The 30-Day Challenge was my priority, but sometimes life got in the way. For example, I usually work through lunch when I have Drs appts. One week I had two Drs appts! One on Tue and one on Wed. Shoot! Normally, I would have been mad and made myself ‘make up’ those walks on Thu or Fri. But this time I didn’t. I granted myself the grace to let life happen, but not to let life derail me. The same thing happened one night after work. I just didn’t feel good. I needed my bed. I have an autoimmune disease. These days happen. As Mom always said ‘When you fall off, you need to get back on that horse.’ So I did just that and was back on the Challenge the next day. Forgive yourself when life happens, but don’t let yourself make up excuses.
I had to keep reining myself in.
- How many steps, how fast, which incline… none of it matters. # of steps is all we care about on this challenge.
- But I can do arm exercises at the same time. Who cares?
- This would be better with ankle weights. Add that to the next Challenge. Stay focused on THIS Challenge.
Timing is everything. Take some time to figure out works for YOU, when it’s best for YOU and when YOU can make it a priority. Tune out the experts. Stop worrying about the ‘Right Way’ to do it. Just get out there and move. You are only going to be successful if you put a plan into place that is sustainable.
After my 30-Day Challenge, I lost 3 lbs. I’m waiting to schedule my next 30-day Challenge because I want to be sure I set realistic goals. The next three weeks are going to be very busy as my son and niece graduate from high school. I have to make sure my challenge is accommodating to that.
Timing is Everything. Set your own 30-day challenge and see what you can do. What have you got to lose?