Lifestyle change is an adjustment. It can be time-consuming learning how to undo old habits and create new ones and practice them until they become habit. One of the biggest adjustments is learning how to manage your time. People struggle with finding the time to workout, or in some instances, meal plan and prep. In times like this, we need a new perspective is needed.
Without much thought, we have all created daily routines that have become a staple for our survival. We wake up, get ready for the day, go to work, eat lunch, get off work, stop at the store, go home, change clothes, cook dinner and eat dinner watching our favorite show, and then we are off to bed. When the weekends come, we often use that as our time to catch up on things we did not have time for during the week. Sometimes we get invited to do things that we have to decline on because we already have something planned.
If you are serious about developing a healthy lifestyle, time management is a must. The first approach is to change your perspective about adding healthy habits to your schedule. Many people make the mistake of looking at it as they have to find the time, and I am here to tell you, you will never “find” the time. It is up to you to MAKE the time, and make it a staple in your daily routine.
For example, the night before work, prepare your lunch while fixing dinner. Pack a gym bag while you are getting your clothes ready for work and on that next day, stop at the gym or the park on your way home so that you can work out for at least an hour. When you get home, you can still enjoy your favorite shows with your dinner by having them recorded. This will even save you a little time by giving you the option to fast forward through commercials. Your weekends can start with your workout. Make working out the first thing you do in the morning. When you wake up, put your gym clothes on and go for a run, or head to the gym. From there you can start your day, and will find that you have more energy to get everything accomplished.
But that is not where it stops. It has to become a fixture in your lifestyle. For example, if someone asked you to go out for a breakfast date on Tuesday morning, chances are you are going to tell them “I can’t, I have to work” and you will schedule it for another time that is convenient for you. The same thing applies to your fitness. If someone asks you to go to happy hour or shopping, or out to dinner, your response should be “I can’t, I have to go to the gym” and then schedule it for another time.
The same applies to healthy eating. It can sometimes take a little more time to prepare your meals in advance, especially if you live on fast food, junk food, and microwaved meals. But preparing your food for the next day, next few days or for the week can be accomplished while you are enjoying your down time. For example, you can sit down in front of the television, or talk on the phone while you wash, cut and contain fruits and veggies. After cooking dinner, you can separate your foods into serving size containers while you are cleaning the kitchen. These small steps allow you to open the fridge, grab your food and go. If you prefer drinking smoothies for breakfast, pack all the ingredients needed in a zip lock bag so that all you have to do is put it in the blender, add, water, milk, or juice, blend and you’re out the door.
A healthy lifestyle requires multi-tasking and maximizing your time. This type of proficiency will not only benefit the pursuit of your healthy lifestyle, it will spill over into all aspects of your life. The worst that can happen is that you will become a fit, healthy, organized person who is proficient in multi-tasking their life…sounds like a winner to me! 😉