Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Maybe it's just not that important to you

I came across this quote on Pinterest not long ago, and it struck me in such a way that I repinned it, of course, memorized it, and printed it out for the bulletin board next to my desk, which is also home to a few of my favorite race bibs and motivational quotes.  The words pop into my head anytime I am feeling unmotivated or strapped for time.  When I hear other people say things like "I don't have time to work out" or "I can't cook healthy because my kids are picky eaters", I now question, silently of course, whether or not working out or eating healthy is really important to them.  I do think that we make time for the things we want to make time for, and while sometimes it comes in the form of making sacrifices (i.e., waking up at 4am for a run before your day starts), sometimes it just comes down to scheduling.  I could talk myself out of running or working out for a gazillion reasons - good ones, to boot - but I don't, because living healthy and active is something that is of the utmost importance to me.  In fact, I'd place it right up there on my priority list after family and friends. 

Not having enough time is an excuse I hear all the time.  I was guilty of using it as an excuse too, for many, many years.  That very excuse caused me to gain 15 pounds, feel sluggish all the time and lose confidence in myself until I just couldn't take it anymore.  Then, I chose to make health and fitness a priority, therefore it became important to me, and there was no more room for excuses.  Easier said than done, right?

Check out Exhibit A, my calendar.  This is a handy dandy dry erase calendar I keep in our kitchen in an attempt to organize my little family's comings and goings.  Ignore the doctor's appointments and boring stuff, but check out the stuff in green and red.  You will see that Monday through Saturday, I have something in green (my color) that corresponds to exercise: on Mondays I do either an interval run (run hard for 3 minutes then walk for 2, repeat X number of times) or a hill workout (run hard up a 100 meter hill then jog back down, repeat X number of times); on Tuesdays and Thursdays I take a Zumba class; on Wednesdays I do a shorter training run (the numbers = miles); on Fridays I do yoga and on Saturdays I do my long run.  What you don't see on here is that I also do strength training 2 times per week, but the days vary so I haven't written them in.  I never miss them, though, because they are important!  If you look at our Saturdays this month, you'll see a few things in red (color code for things that the husband and I both do): we are running a 10K race, doing a 10K practice run and then running a 10K trail race at the beginning of March.  Phew!  I'm exhausted just looking at February!

Exhibit B - Here is another view that shows 2 equally important things below the calendar: my detailed half marathon training schedule for the race I'm running on March 18th, and the group exercise schedule at the Y.  It's nice to have these things in a central location where I can glance at them and check to make sure I'm on track with training, or check to see if there is another Zumba class at a more convenient time if something throws off my Tue and Thu night schedule.  It's all about simplifying and making it EASY to fit exercise into the family routine!

I'd like for you - yes, YOU - to think about the excuses you make to yourself for why you can't do the thing you'd like to do.  Is there a truly valid reason, or is it because that thing just really isn't important to you?

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