Finding time to work out

The struggle is so real.

Whenever I do my yearly blog surveys, this concept is ever-prevalent and something I think that is challenging for most of us:

finding time to work out. 

I totally feel ya on this one. Maybe you have fitness goals you want to accomplish, or like me, you NEED the endorphins for your mental happiness. Life gets in the way, chores pile up, kiddo-related to-dos are mounting, and the workout can slip lower and lower on the priority ladder. I know that I’m a happier, healthier human when I get in a consistent workout routine, and I thought I’d share some of the tips that help me make it happen. 

Running 2

Here are some of the things that help me find (or make!) the time to work out: 

– The earlier it happens, the better. This is not to say that I’m an early bird (we all know I have difficulties with that whole “waking up” thing), but the sooner I can get it done, the more likely it is to actually happen. As the day goes on and tasks pile up, my energy also decreases. I have the most energy when I’m awake, possibly fed, and the girls are at school. By the end of the day, a workout isn’t as likely to happen, or I’ll just go through the motions because I’m so tired. 

– Take advantage of gym and studio childcare. This can be a tricky one because not all kids like childcare and that can make it really tough. Liv wasn’t comfortable with me leaving her in gym childcare for longer than 15-20 minutes until she was at least 2. We kept trying, with zero pressure, and on the days when I knew it wasn’t going to happen, I’d work out at the base gym in the munchkin room. (They have a play area for the kiddos, so you can see them and they can see you while you work out. The equipment is very limited, but it gets the job done!) When Liv was younger, I was also fortunate to be teaching at a health resort close to the house, so many of my workouts were either classes I taught, or my own workouts when she was asleep and the Pilot was home.

With P, she got used to gym childcare very early. I was teaching at Point Loma Sports club and they have the BEST childcare I’ve ever encountered. It’s super clean, the girls who work there are all fun and caring (and genuinely love kids), and it was a great experience. It made it so easy to be able to let her play/chill in there while I taught or got in my own workouts. This was when she was at the height of her reflux, so I was strategic about when I’d take her to the gym (usually when she was just about to fall asleep or when she was just waking up. I couldn’t transport her within 15-20 minutes of her eating). 

Barre3 2

(Shout out to barre3 for their amazing play lounge) 

– For my mama friends who don’t have access to gym childcare, or their kiddo hates it, try to work out at home or involve them in any way you can. When we were in Valdosta and the Pilot was gone, I’d spin in the garage while watching them play outside, they’d join me in dance cardio workouts, or I’d do barre on a mat. They usually copy me until they get bored and find something else to do. The beautiful thing is that Liv has noticed that I work out because I enjoy it and it makes me feel good. One day I was super tired (after multiple night wake-ups. Yeehaw) and Liv was like, “It’s ok, mama. When you work out, you’ll feel better and have more energy.”

– Start the day in atheleisure. This is so I don’t feel like I have to change to take a class or get in a workout. I’m already dressed for it, so might as well make it happen. 

– Schedule it! I feel like when it’s in my schedule, I’m less likely to ditch. This is especially true for classes with online sign-ins and you lose the class money if you late cancel. If I signed up, I’m going. Even if you don’t have time to make a class, schedule in a workout block to get in a home workout or hit the gym. 

Lifting weights

– Work out at home! This is a HUGE one. I’m a big fan of online classes (there are so many great ones now!), apps, and fitness equipment (like Peloton). Some of my favorite at-home workout options are here. 

– Break it into blocks. It can be daunting to try to find a 45-minute block in a jam-packed day. Instead, find 10-minute blocks throughout the day. There are 3 or 4 hiding somewhere, you just have to find them. 😉 For one block, focus on cardio, the next you can do strength, then core, then stretching. Boom; workout done, and bonus EPOC sessions from multiple workout sessions (assuming you’re working hard during those blocks).

How do you find time to work out? Any tricks or hacks that you’ve found to help?



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  1. Jamie on September 11, 2018 at 11:50 am

    I’m training for my first marathon (NYC…yikes) and was struggling to find time to work-out between working full-time and pulling “single” mom duty while my husband and I are living separately at the moment due to work. I ended up joining a running group and now I make super early AM plans with people to run for the majority of my runs. Waking up at 4:30 SUCKS, but it gets the run done and doesn’t take away time from my kids. And my son (who’s 14), is enjoying making $20/week by watching his sister for a bit when she wakes up in the morning on those days.

    I am so tired though…lol.

    Prior to this, I have always been a huge fan of working out at home or running on my lunchbreak. I use for most of my at home workouts and it’s been extremely convenient for me and my crazy schedule. I also LOVE Yoga with Adriene on youtube when I need a good yoga practice.

  2. Heather on September 11, 2018 at 12:03 pm

    I work out super obnoxiously early before anyone in my house is awake (I have 3 boys 6 & under). The mornings when that is unbearable, I’ll try to squeeze in a workout at lunch (my office has an Equinox level gym that is free). If neither of those happen, I try to do a quick strength workout in the evening after the monsters are in bed (squats, lunges, core is my basic go-to – about 20 mins- I’ve been known to do most of this while making dinner). Not great but better than nothing. My last hack is my run commute to work once a week. It is 8 miles. I’m a little late to work but much more productive when I’m there! The route is gorgeous, which helps!

  3. Rachel on September 11, 2018 at 3:34 pm

    I really believe that incorporating more exercise is so important. I feel like we all tend to put it on the back burner when life gets busy and we think that there will always be time later to do it. But we need to start making it a priority and I truly feel like it will make a difference. I have been finding time daily to do more exercise and I feel great. I am writing a lot about little things you can do to make a difference in your day and exercise is one of them!

  4. Tracy on September 11, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    I always got up super early so I was finished before anyone was up. Now that my kids are older I still get up super early to workout because I’m so used to it!

  5. Maggie on September 11, 2018 at 8:08 pm

    If you’re a morning workout person, I think having as many things as possible prepped the night before is a game changer, too. I pack my work things, lunch, I even get my coffee set up to brew in my aeropress. I’m able to get out the door a lot quicker without running around doing all of that stuff in the morning.

    PS – I don’t see the a link on “here” for your favorite at home workouts – is there supposed to be one? I’d love to see it!

    • Fitnessista on September 17, 2018 at 1:56 am

      i was going to link to a post but realized it’s 7 years old lol. i think it needs an update!
      totally agree that prepping as much as possible makes a huge difference.
      hope you had a great weekend!

  6. Shayna Rodriguez on September 12, 2018 at 9:50 am

    These are great tips. I have a newborn and I look at moms and wonder how the heck they squeeze a workout in. Thanks for sharing your secrets 🙂

    • Fitnessista on September 17, 2018 at 1:55 am

      you’ll get there! when liv was a newborn i literally thought i might not make it out of the house again 😉

  7. Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious on September 12, 2018 at 10:01 am

    I 100% believe in scheduling in your workouts. I look at it like getting my car maintenance or a doctor’s appointment. You need those appointments to keep your car running well and to keep tabs on your health so why wouldn’t working out take just as much priority. I think the real problem is people think if they can’t do it 100% well or every single day of the week then they won’t do it all. Even some small amount of working out is better than none and it doesn’t have to be every day of the week.

  8. milania on September 12, 2018 at 6:50 pm

    great ideas! i’m a fan of working out at home now; also going out for walks, light jog for about 20 mins. goal is to move, doesn’t have to be intense. I love yogawith Adrienne too.

    • Fitnessista on September 17, 2018 at 1:54 am

      i still need to check out her channel!

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