Fit tip Tuesday: Scheduling workouts {BusyTips}
Jan
14th

This week, I’m excited to be joining a new link-up hosted by Lisa at The Skinny on Health: Fit Tip Tuesday! The timing is perfect, because A) I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while, B) someone kind of asked me about this topic yesterday, and C) it just so happens to be an unconventional fit tip!

One of the questions I get asked most often – as a blogger, by family and friends, and in interviews – is how I manage to juggle so many things without epicly failing at all of them (i.e. law school, teaching, blogging, fitness, and everyday life). My answer is always the same: time management. Honestly, I feel like I could write a book on this topic, but instead I’ll settle for some blog posts, starting with this one!

I attribute my own time management skills to college, specifically, to pledging my sorority. It was an enormous commitment on top of an enormous course load as a science double major, so I just had to figure it out. Sink or swim. Luckily, I swam. I never really let up after that, and I’ve developed a mini arsenal of tools to make it work. Today I want to talk about the most basic of those skills: calendaring.

BusyBod BusyTip CalendaringNow stop, before you run away screaming and just hear me out! Calendaring/scheduling can address not one, but two major barriers to a regular fitness program: lack of time and accountability. Note: I know it isn’t for everyone and can be an anxiety trigger for some, if that’s you, please ignore me 🙂

As you can probably tell from that little graphic, I block out my entire day in Google calendar. Google calendar is the best in my opinion, but any program will work. If you don’t have a calendar you use already, great news, I can almost guarantee you have one with your email account! It will sync to your phone and any other device and be with you wherever you go. Most likely though, you have one that you use for true appointments and not much else. If that’s the case, you’re missing out on its full potential!

When I say I schedule everything, I mean everything, and I do it for a reason. I block out time to get ready in the morning, I leave gaps for travel, I block time to make dinner, read blogs, do work for school, literally, everything. Despite the high level of detail, making my calendar only takes a couple minutes, and it easily saves me hours each week by keeping me on track.

Fit tip calendaring

I want to be clear that calendaring is NOT about being rigid. The goal is to keep yourself on track, not lock you into fixed regimen. I still rearrange my calendar constantly, sometimes several times per day. If something takes longer than I expect, I just adjust.

The benefit of calendaring is that it forces you to be realistic about how long certain things will take. I treat it like a visual to-do list. A regular to-do list doesn’t account for how long certain things will take, which for me leads to procrastination. But it’s much harder to say to yourself “I can finish this later” when you can look ahead and see that you really can’t. If you ever have that feeling that your day “gets away from you” or you are frequently surprised when you run out of time in the day, I promise this can help. As an added bonus, it helps you see how much time you really have in your day, and I bet it is more than you think. That’s where the FitTip part comes in.

One of the biggest barriers to exercise is a perceived lack of time. While I’m not denying that some people truly have no time, most people can regain enough time for a short workout with better time management. So, even if you don’t schedule anything else, at least try to schedule your workouts. If you write down your workout on your calendar or in your planner, and you treat it like a meeting with yourself, it’s more likely to happen. Again, you can move them if you need to, but scheduling it creates an added accountability with yourself.

BusyBod Busy Tip Schedule your workouts.jpg

For me, scheduling workouts forces me to think about when they can actually happen. If I don’t work out in the morning, sometimes I can’t workout at night. If I know that, I’m much less likely to skip the morning because I know it’s my only shot for the day.

I feel like I have a million more calendar tips I want to share, but I just scrolled up and saw how long this post is getting (I told you I could write a book), so I’m going to wrap this up. However, if you have ANY questions about how you can effectively use your calendar to get more time out of your day, please reach out.

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Looking for even more Fit Tips? Make sure you head over to TSOH to see what my genius blog friends are sharing <3

Questions: Do you use a detailed calendar? Would you like to see more posts on time management? Be honest, did you read over my calendar graphic for a sneak peak into my life? (I know I would!)

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26 comments on “Fit tip Tuesday: Scheduling workouts {BusyTips}

    1. BusyBod Post author

      I feel like it can be a little different when you work full time. I’ll probably still schedule my mornings and evenings though!

      Reply
  1. erin @ The Almond Eater

    Ohhhhh…ahhhhhh…I love Google Calendar! Except I don’t use it….but I need to! I still write everything down in a planner but I ammmmm always planning. Always. I don’t think I’d get anything accomplished if I didn’t schedule it into my day.
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    1. BusyBod Post author

      I’m exactly the same! It’s been a few years since I switched from the planner but I’m so glad I did. Take the plunge!

      Reply
  2. Davida @ The Healthy Maven

    I’m horrible with writing things down. I try to use my iCal but I forget…At one point in my life I was pretty neurotic about calendaring but I’ve eased up and managed to go in the complete opposite direction. Now that my schedule is kind of all over the place with Kewaza I really need to get more organized!
    Davida @ The Healthy Maven recently posted…Tush Toning Pyramid WorkoutMy Profile

    Reply
    1. BusyBod Post author

      I definitely border on neurotic at times, but it varies with what’s happening in my life. Like during vacations I don’t schedule anything, and when I was working this summer my schedule was a little less detailed, since work is sometimes just an eight hour block labeled research, but it still works.

      Reply
  3. Ashley @MilesonOats

    PREACH! I feel like so many people make excuses about not enough time, which just isn’t true (for the most part) I work full time (mon-fri) go to ASU full time and still make time to workout for 1 hour a day, 6 days a week. Granted, waking up @ 4:30 am isn’t ideal for most people (not even me 80% of the time) but I do it because I make the time for it. Also, like you I can’t workout after the day has started because I have class at night. If a working mom supporting a family can hit the treadmill once a day, surely I can to!

    I LOVE your tip for using Google calendar. I carry around my planner like it’s my child. Constantly crossing off and adding on. I am so happy you brought this topic up and gave examples for us to manage our time better. You are living proof fit is possible in the midst of a chaotic routine! Love it 🙂
    Ashley @MilesonOats recently posted…MIMMMy Profile

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    1. BusyBod Post author

      I love everything about this comment!! No excuses!! I was exactly like you treating my planner like my baby through grad school. I didn’t ditch it for google calendar until a few years ago but I’m so glad I did, so much easier to edit, and I don’t have to worry about running out of space 🙂

      Reply
  4. Lisa @ The Skinny on Health

    I am SUCH an organization freak!!! I write everything down on my calendar and have a zillion to do lists for every day! Writing your workout down on a calendar makes it so much more concrete. It makes it feel like a commitment, rather than an option. Awesome fit tip! Can’t wait to collaborate!

    xx
    Lisa
    Lisa @ The Skinny on Health recently posted…Fit Tip Tuesday Link Up #1!My Profile

    Reply
  5. Amy @ Long Drive Journey

    Love this! I am a scheduler to the max. It was the only thing that got me through undergrad. I haven’t been that busy since then, but I still swear by having a calendar and blocking out small increments of time when necessary. Absolutely LOVE the idea of scheduling workouts. It helps with variety, too!
    Amy @ Long Drive Journey recently posted…Chunky Potato Leek SoupMy Profile

    Reply
    1. BusyBod Post author

      It definitely helps with variety! And I totally agree about doing smaller increment when necessary. I plan to a crazy level of detail because I have to, but for most people a less granular approach is perfect!

      Reply
    1. BusyBod Post author

      Planning the night before is a great ritual. I usually do a few days in advance, but it’s all about keeping it regular. If it works for you, that’s what matters 🙂

      Reply
    1. BusyBod Post author

      I totally get that. I was glued to a hard copy planner for a long time. I tried to go digital but it just didn’t work. As long as it works for you though that’s all that matters! Even now, sometimes I just need to see things on paper.

      Reply
  6. Ashley @ Mint Sparkles

    I totally do this with my google calendar too! I like to use my google calendar to let me know when I should be doing something, and my paper Erin Condren planner to write down the details of things (like school assignments and blog posts). Google Calendar is one of the best planning tools i’ve ever used!

    Reply
    1. BusyBod Post author

      You’re the second person to mention an Erin Condren planner. I may have to look into one for blog post thoughts. I’m still working out a system for that, my notes are scatters everywhere (blogger fail). But for day to day life, google calendar is the best! I’m happy to meet another addict 🙂

      Reply
  7. Jan @ Sprouts n Squats

    I always workout in the mornings before work to get it done as otherwise life takes over. I don’t need to schedule in anything else but I use outlook to schedule all of my reminders to help me remember things and then use it for both work and personal events I need to remember so I forget nothing 😉

    I’d love more time management tips, you would definitely be the master at it 😉
    Jan @ Sprouts n Squats recently posted…I now eat like a horse…WIAWMy Profile

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  8. Alex @ Kenzie Life

    I try to have set days and times when I go to workout, and I make sure that I can get there no matter what. I think what helps me keep on track with my workouts is that I go to Pure Barre, so it’s not just an open gym, go whenever format. I go when the teachers I like are teaching and I don’t miss their classes unless something urgent comes up. I love time management tips even though I think I’m pretty good with managing my schedule, though I am always trying to be even more efficient and I love seeing what works for others!
    Alex @ Kenzie Life recently posted…The Extreme Self-Care ProjectMy Profile

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    1. BusyBod Post author

      Going to classes definitely helps with accountability. That’s how I started, I never wanted to miss my favorite classes with my favorite instructors. I love the flexibility of working out at home, but you definitely have to force the schedule and hold yourself accountable.

      Reply

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