You will hear us say time and time again that planning and preparation is fundamental to your success. So often, we get into the craziness of our day and before we know it, it has flown past. With busy schedules, it is easy for time to get away from us. Making excuses not to hit the gym because of time, not having food on hand and making poor choices, choosing to eat out all too often. All of these things that can hinder your progress can be eliminated if the week is planned appropriately from the beginning. Get a weekly planner or utilize the calendar function on your phone to plan out your weeks & days. Sometimes, I have to plan my days by the hour if I know it is very busy.
Take a look at your week from the beginning. I like to do this on Sundays. Take into account your work week, other obligations, your children’s schedule and anything/anywhere else you need to be present for. Then, see which days you are going to make your rest days. If you know you will be busy from 8am – 8pm on Tuesday, KNOWING you will likely skip the gym that day, fine… that just became your rest day. The great thing about our body is that it has no idea which day it is. You don’t HAVE to work back on Tuesday, move it around to suit you.
The next thing to be done is carve out time for your workouts. See when this fits into your week. Do you have to wake up an extra hour early to get your workouts done before work? Are you able to get to the gym after dinner or after your children fall asleep? Whatever time that might be, put it into your schedule, in permanent marker and STICK TO IT. You should be able to identify at least one hour a day depending on how many training/cardio days are given to you by your coach.
So, you have identified rest days and built your week around that. What you cannot do is identify more days of rest and skip the gym because “you’re too busy”, that is an excuse & we aren’t making excuses for ourselves any longer. Once you develop a healthy relationship with working out, you will see that you WANT that time in your week. Think of gym time as personal time. This is your time to be selfish and work on you. You cannot be the best you for everyone else if you are constantly struggling. I digress….. Okay rest days accounted for. Now, this is where you may have to compromise a bit. Knowing your schedule is jam packed, that means you may have to wake up a bit earlier or use the evenings to get your workout in. Identify that. If you need to wake up an hour earlier or get home an hour later, so be it. That time is chiseled into your working week and we do not derail from that. Make the commitment to yourself, regardless of how bad it will suck (this is temporary, I promise) that you WILL get your workout sessions in. I am telling you, it will become the best part of your day. This obligation to yourself is so important.
Treat your workout time as mandatory. We never really feel like going to work or shuttling kids around, etc… but it gets done because we HAVE to do it, no one else is going to do those things for us. Working out now becomes your second “job” if you will. The “I don’t feel like it” isn’t going to work anymore.
Okay, I think you get my point here.
The next big part of planning your week is to devote 1-3 hours for meal prep. Yes, it is time consuming, we understand that. However, a little bit of time spent in the kitchen (I do this on Sundays as well) will save you TONS of time during the week. Not only does meal planning/prepping save us a ton of time, it eliminates guess work. We have identified that we are super busy, it is easy to eat out or have to grab something where options that are on your meal plan are slim. Having food with you, prepped, tracked and ready to go eliminates the frustrations of “omg what am I going to eat?” Meal prepping saves money & macros. Utilize it. It is invaluable. An entire document on meal prep will be coming to you in the next coming weeks of LLS.
Do not forget to rest! I know that rest may seem impossible and it is extremely hard for us to slow down. Our body needs it! Sleep is where our body resets and repairs. It is invaluable.
This week, work on your schedule. Look at the big picture. Creating a ROUTINE is a crucial step in a leading a healthy lifestyle. Obesity is the number one preventive cause of death worldwide (Chung et.al, 2018). Rates continue to rise, especially in our childhood population, predisposing us & our children to type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, high blood, pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease and even some forms of cancer (Chung et al., 2018). This is your chance to reverse that, leading a healthy life as well as teaching your family the same ways! PLAN PLAN PLAN!