So one thing I hear a lot in practice is that people commonly feel they do not have the time to complete and/or meet their behavioral/health goals.
Here is the process I witnessed time and time again: a client comes in, ready to make change- they come to their appointment, talk about what they want to do better, and start. However another common thing I saw- was as soon as life got “tricky” (as it has a way of doing), or the routine changed- it is very easy for people to let go of their new-found healthy behavior.
I think that is just part of the culture we live in – as a whole I think people aren’t always willing to (or even see it this way) of putting their health and well-being as a priority. I was one of those people – a busy week at work used to mean that it would be a week I didn’t work out.
The job I currently work results in some pretty long work days, and I started this job when I was still training for the marathon. So here was a typical day: 6AM wake up, 4-9 mile run, 9am-9pm work. I realized that a year ago I would have NEVER gotten up before work to run. I would have slept every second I could up until leaving for work, and just not have gotten a work out in. Additionally there were some days when I was so exhausted in the morning that I could not run, so I would get home at 9:30, and run 3-4 miles on the treadmill.
Granted. This was a lot easier when I was getting ready for the marathon than it has been since. BUT. Let’s take a step back and look at the big picture. A year ago – I NEVER WOULD have had this attitude, three years ago I weighed 15 more pounds than I do now, I didn’t eat that great, couldn’t run more than 3 miles, and didn’t like the idea of working out (watching tv, or reading a book was way more inviting).
Did it happen over night? Nope. But if I can do it, anyone really can. So in practice when I’m told “I don’t have time” – that is not a response I accept. There are 24 hours in one day, and 168 hours in an entire week.
I typically ask my patients to work up 150-180 minutes of physical activity per week. So if you follow the same goal, you won’t even be spending 2% of your week exercising. Yup, 2%. Doesn’t seem so bad when you put it like that does it?
So in closing – whether your goal is to run, to lose weight, to get in your 10,000 steps – there is almost always time. The real question is when will you make your health, and your goals a priority?
Stay tuned as my next post will be about applications and devices that help with these fitness goals.