I sat and had a coffee with a client for two hours. We had not seen each other since November, but remained in contact here and there. The theme of the two hours was:
It’s hard to juggle everything and you shouldn’t feel shame or guilt because you cannot workout right now—internally or from someone else.
“If it’s important to you, you’ll make it happen—make yourself a priority.”
I agree with the sentiments. Our health needs to be a priority in our life. But as my responsibilities have shifted over the years, no longer is my time, just “my time”. So I have realized the sentiments are just not that simple.
We ALL have access to DIFFERENT hours and energy levels in a day.
As Fitness Coach Karen Preene notes, some people need access to childcare, ensure employee’s needs are met and their bosses are happy. They have romantic partners to show up for, friendships to nourish, and parents and loved ones to care for, finances, disabilities and illness to manage.
I have clients trying to manage all of it. Myself—trying to nurture friendships, show up for my common-law partner and run my fitness business can be a tough balance. Also trying to make sure an older family member gets to their medical apts, while you’re retaining their own medical conditions (for their benefit and yours), helping them with groceries, haircuts, prepping their food and paying their bills is a completely different layer.
So when someone tells me “time” is their biggest barrier to exercise… it’s not an excuse…it’s a reality.
If time is a barrier and you want exercise in your current routine, make it work for you. Sometimes that is walking/running, taking a class, YouTube yoga or fitness classes at home. Home programs/online training… sometimes booking time with a Personal Trainer is what you need in your schedule to keep you consistent.
Just don’t feel shame or like you don’t care, if you’re struggling to find time to “make yourself a priority”.
Also -- If you’re someone who is taking on the role of a Caregiver for a loved one… the very nuanced levels of love, gratitude, guilt, chaos and exhaustion you may feel, while trying to efficiently blend that into your own calendar needs/wants… I want to say you’re doing great.
Note: Karen Preene's work has made me do a deep-dive into this concept. Follow them for more great information. Click here.