Fit Fitness into Your Schedule

By Denise Sala - ExecWell's Head Fitness Coach, NASM – CPT, CES

One of the most important tools we have in our toolbox as working professionals is our calendars. Whether they are on our computer, phone, or desk, calendars are extremely instrumental in organizing both our work and personal lives. Without our calendars, we would be rudderless in an open sea, so to speak. 

Yet how many times do we schedule everything from business meetings and travel to social events, spa/massage appointments,  and our children’s activities onto our calendars but fail to schedule fitness? For us to be successful in anything we do, we have to plan it, schedule it, and then implement it. Fitness should fit into our schedule (calendars) just like everything else we do. It’s that important.

How can you fit fitness into your schedule and make it a priority so that you don’t skip anymore trips to the gym or outdoor fitness activities? Here’s some important tips to get you started:

  1. Put it on the calendar. It’s that simple. Once you put your workout time on a specific day and time on your calendar, make it as important as anything else that is on there. Make fitness a set priority on your calendar and in your life. Once you see your workout time as an important event, you will make it one. It’s a mindset.
  2. Have a plan. Know what you are going to do in the given amount of time that you have to do it in. For example, if it’s a workout at a gym, have your workout printed out or on your phone and know exactly what you are going to do once you get there. Your designated time will be more efficient and effective. You don’t come to a meeting unprepared, so neither should you come to a workout unprepared. You get out of it what you put into it.
  3. Put your plan into action. Arrive at your location (gym, hotel workout room, home gym, hike/bike trail, etc.) at the designated time and place as you have on your calendar.  Be on time. Workout for the whole amount of time designated. Do not cheat by leaving early because you are too tired, hungry, etc. You will only cheat yourself. Put your best effort into this time that is on the calendar to make you a better YOU!
  4. Set a goal for yourself. Then break it down into smaller steps. Start with a fitness goal you want to achieve for yourself. Look at the big picture but break your overall goal into smaller ones. If you have a large event to plan for your company, you don’t do it all at once. You break down the overall plan into to do lists of what needs to be done leading up to the event. The same is true for your overall fitness goal. Whether it’s to lose 40 lbs, get ready for your first 5k run, or do the Ironman Triathalon, you must first break down your training regimen into monthly, weekly, and daily activities/workouts. For example, if you are going to compete in a 5k run in two months, you might want to first start with one-minute sprint intervals for 30 minutes two days a week and a mile-run one day a week on weeks one and two. Break down your overall goal into smaller goals until you.
  5. Create deadlines. Not only does everything we do in business require a plan, but it also requires deadlines. Deadlines are what drive us on a daily basis to get things done. Otherwise, we would all be procrastinators. How long have you been procrastinating about fitness? Stop procrastinating and start doing!

  6. Reward yourself for meeting your goal. Then move on to another goal. Once we get a big project done, we don’t stop there. We pat each other on the backs and start a new one. It’s the same with fitness. Once you’ve reached a goal. Take a moment to reward yourself for a job well done. Buy a new workout outfit. Take a mountaineering course. Enlist a family member or friend to join you. Then create a new goal for yourself. Fitter is better. You can never be too fit!

Put fitness on your calendar. You will see it as an important appointment in your life, and you will get it done. Make fitness a priority. It’s only going to make you better in everything you do.