I’d just like to start out by apologizing for the lack of activity this summer/fall. Preston and I have both been on 60-80 hour a week schedules and unfortunately the blog ended up taking a back seat to the “real world”.
In my first post back I’d like to talk about finding balance. Like many mid 20′s Americans, I have two jobs. During normal office hours I work as a leasing consultant for one of the largest apartment complexes in Blacksburg, VA. However, when the sun goes down and the lights of downtown Blacksburg illuminate College Avenue, I jump to the opposite end of the spectrum and work through the night at a popular college bar.
Typically I spend an average of 60-70 hours a week at work, and while this is normal for a person of my age, it made me realize how easy it is to forget about the physical fitness goals that one may have had prior to a schedule such as this one. I find myself exhausted most days. Whether I’ve gotten home at 5am from a shift at the bar or at 5:30pm from a day at the office, going to the gym has gotten harder and harder over the last few months. While I’m still figuring out ways to motivate myself post exhaustion, I still feel like the gym is home for me. The last few months has been a battle trying to beat back fatigue.
So lets talk about how to defeat the work day blues so that you can get back into the gym on a regular basis. Waking up earlier than you have to in the morning sucks, but so does heading straight to the gym after a long day at work. Not only are you going to the gym at the same time as 100 weekend warriors, you’re tired, hungry, and the last thing on many of our minds is jumping right into a physically exhausting activity. Counter this by waking up earlier. I know what your thinking, “Sunday night football isn’t over until 11:30! The Pats and 49ers are playing this week!!” here’s a tip, skip it. Go to bed early and start your week off on a positive note because I’m going to tell you exactly what’s going to happen. The 49ers D isn’t what it was earlier in the season, Tom Brady is going to roll over teams this December as the Pats fight for a first round bye. Wes Welker and Aaron Hernandez will both score via Air Brady. Ridley and Brady will both rush for a score in the first half. The game will be out of hand by the end of the 3rd quarter. Come on, Man! It’s Foxboro. You should know this.
Back to work.
Don’t think about waking up at 6am. Think about going to sleep at 10pm and getting 8 hours of quality sleep. Wake up, grab a snack that will add some fuel to the tank (so that you aren’t passing out in front of the senior citizens that beat you to the gym everyday) and finish your workout before you ever begin to contemplate skipping it to meet your friends at happy hour. I’m not going to lie to you, this schedule is going to take getting used to. It’s going to be worth it.
Tip 2: If you’re sitting at a desk all day it may be hard to remember that you still need to hydrate your body. Take a water bottle that holds more than 32oz in with you everyday. Make sure you’re refilling it at least a couple times through out the day. There is a direct correlation between dehydration and fatigue, and if you’re set in your ways and still want to roll into the gym at 5pm every day, you’ll need all the energy you can get.
Tip 3: Pack snacks. Your body is still recovering from yesterday’s workout. The last thing you need to do is go into a caloric deficit and waste all of that hard work you just poured into getting back in shape. Protein shakes work for me, they’re quick and easy when you’re on the go. If you get tired of shakes but you’re still adamant about reaching your macro/micro nutrient requirements for the day, try making a batch of healthy muffins (Kurt Weidner gives you his recipe in a step by step tutorial @ http://youtu.be/_nThG8mL9sE ). Regardless of what you choose, you should make sure that you’re eating enough to support your activity levels as well as supplement your recovery. Waiting for your lunch break and then stuffing your face with the largest salad at buffalo wild wings isn’t an ideal lifestyle for a healthy individual. (I say this because I’ve done it. I know… I know…Tragic)
Tip 4: Prioritize your time. I know that you’ve seen that episode of How I Met Your Mother at least 3 times.. I have too. Skip it. Laying on the couch may be relaxing in the present, but think back to how many times you’ve skipped your workout because you didn’t want to get up (Guilty). While none of us would like to admit to it, we’ve all done it. It doesn’t matter if you’re using this new found time in the gym, or simply reading a book. Kick the lazy habits and become mentally and physically active. Use the 2 hours that you were wasting watching reruns and make your meals for the week. Planning ahead, especially in terms of eating, will put you in a position to stay on track and keep you away from junk food.
Tip 5: Set Goals! Demand the best from yourself. Prove somebody wrong. Hell, Prove yourself wrong. Everyone wants to be that next big transformational story but there aren’t many out there that have the courage to get off their ass and do something about it. Start slow if you’d like. Aim to do cardio 3 times next week, then 4 times the week after that. Challenge yourself. Do more than you did last week. No one is asking you to be the next model on the cover of Health and Fitness, but living a healthy lifestyle will lead to a healthy physique, and a healthy physique will lead to a higher level of confidence. Set a deadline for yourself. If that means signing up for a marathon, tough mudder, or a bodybuilding competition, do it. Knowing that you have to perform in front of an audience is going to do more for you than anyone else can.
As always, I hope this article helps at least 1 person. To the readers that have missed us, we’re going to do everything we can to follow these tips ourselves and find some consistency. If you have any questions or you’d just like for us to address a specific topic in our next post, head over to our Questions page.
Thanks for reading. #Conquer