“I just don’t have time.”
This is the number one excuse I hear when it comes to people needing to lose weight or get in shape. Yet, a recent report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed 95% of people 15 and up spend an average of 5 hours a day doing leisure activities like watching TV, socializing, or exercising. Out of all the activities, watching TV made up of half of the time. Since people spend 32 hours a week online, I would guess a lot of the other time is spent online – because only 20% of the people surveyed said they spent it exercising.
The moral of the story is we HAVE the time, we are just not USING the time wisely.
8 ways to manage your time better so you can make time to get fit:
1. Set a schedule. Your workouts should be just as important as arriving to work on time. Work is an investment and so is work in the gym. If you just hope you have time left over each day, you will never workout. You must set aside the time and make it happen.
2. Schedule your social media time. Instead of getting on facebook and twitter all throughout the day, schedule times to check it quickly, reply and get off. You can suck up a ton of time trying to make sure you don’t miss the latest greatest post online. It won’t kill you to wait a few hours to find out your BFF had suchi for lunch without you.
3. Turn off your iphone app notifications. Every iPhone app asks you if you want Push notifications. If you’re not careful, you’ll be getting some kind of notification every freakin’ second. Sure, notifications are very helpful – especially when starting social media. But, as your social media grows, so do your notifications. Notifications are not only be very distracting, and suck up battery life, they waste a lot of time. If your phone notifies you every time you get a tweet, mention, app update, post or game requeest – TURN IT OFF. It will “push” out precious time you could be “pushing” weight in the gym!
4. Remove or reduce email alerts. Half the emails that once pinged my phone, ipad and laptop were ads, promotions and junk. Although I do get a lot of work email, they aren’t going to die if I don’t respond 30 seconds after they email me. Instead, check your email every 2-3 hours depending on your email traffic. Some people may only need to check it once in the morning and once at night. But, bouncing from Word, to web, to email every time your computer dings is completely distracting and will have your mind and time all over the place.
5. Stay focused on your priorities. Most of us are huge procrastinators. TV, internet, cell phones, ipads, skype, ichat – you name it, distract us from doing important tasks. You have 2 options: you can bounce all over the place and barely complete anything, or you can stay focused on what matters most before you allow for distractions. This means do the hardest work first. Then, move on to the next important thing. As you prioritize, you find you will have less time and your free time will be stress-free.
6. Organize errands. When I lived 45 minutes away from town, I learned to bundle my errands up in one productive trip. However, living in a town where I can pretty much go anywhere in 5 minutes, causes me to be a little less careless with my errand time. If you really want to save time, keep a list of errands that need to be run and plan them ahead of time. You’ll spend less time driving around, and take fewer trips to the same places, if you simply think it out before hand.
7. Quit being so available. If you are like me, you’ve probably answered the phone while in the shower. Really?! I mean, what are we thinking! I think it won’t kill someone to wait for me to take a darn shower and dry off before replying. Before we had cell phones, portable phones and answering machines, there used to be something called “no answer”. Yep, imagine that! The phone rang and no one picked up – and it wasn’t the end of the world. Next time you are in the middle of something. and the phone rings, let it go to voice mail and call them back as soon as you can without it slowing you down.
8. Learn to say no. This one is particularly hard for me. I have a real hard time saying no. I always want to help, and I hate letting people down, but always saying yes to everyone will kill you – and kill a lot of time. This is especially important with socialites. They have fear of “missing something” if they don’t go to every party, lunch, meeting, and social event. Choose your social time and friends wisely, always putting your family and loved ones first. If you say yes to everyone all the time, ultimately, they are not the one that will suffer – YOU will suffer. Then you’ll be no good to anyone.
NOTE: The CDC’s recommended exercise is for good health. 10 hours a month is 4 30-minute workouts per week. Of course you want to workout more to LOOK fit, but to fight disease and improve health, 30 minutes a day is fantastic. 🙂