Yesterday morning I opened up an email.
One of the first emails that I get from people when they decide to let me infiltrate their inbox 24/7 contains their biggest struggle when it comes to fitness and training. The struggle that I read in that email wasn’t a new one. It had certainly crossed my inbox multiple times before. But I happened to be trudging directly through the same swamp that this particular person was struggling with at the exact moment that I read it.
Talk about hitting you right in the feels.
These emails are always some variation of “I don’t have any time”.
And people don’t have time for legit reasons:
- I work 80 hours a week.
- I have 6 kids.
- I commute 3 hours each way.
- Life is busy and full of distractions and I just don’t want to make time to train!
So here’s the obligatory blog article about how you need to avoid distractions, schedule your training, and just do it, right?
Listen. It happens to all of us. Every day.
We get seduced away by distractions. Or we legitimately are spread thin. Or we just don’t feel like working out at all because pieces of our uterus are sloughing off.
And it’s okay.
Rome wasn’t built in a day. And it won’t be destroyed in a day either.
Rome wasn’t built in a week. And it won’t be destroyed in a week either.
It’s super easy to heap guilt and admonitons upon yourself when you’re letting your training slide. It might not just be your training that is sliding either. Maybe you can’t even remember the last time you took a shower.
I’m all for prioritizing self-care, but sometimes that’s an additional stress that I don’t need. That YOU don’t need. Because you know what sounds better than just being stressed out and pressed for time in general? Beating yourself up for not taking time out for yourself on top of it.
Here’s my go-to thought about just relaxing into the utter chaos of a shitty week:
I know how to be okay after I wasn’t. — LOUIS CK
Basically, you’ve salvaged yourself out of shitty weeks before. You can do it again. Try to erase at least that one piece of stress for the moment.
Lastly, sometimes it helps to commiserate with others. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. In honor of that, here’s a list of things that I did this week instead of train:
- Watch “Finding Dory” 7 times.
- Catch up with my friends from “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”.
- Eat cookies.
- Eat chocolate.
- Spend WAAAAAAY more time than necessary on social media. Like to the point where I looked up and hours had passed. #ripvanwinkle
- Think about training and how much I didn’t want to do do.
- Plan to train, but know deep down that I’m probably not going to.
- Play with Play-Doh.
- Put together puzzles.
- Color in coloring books.
- Eat more cookies.
- Write this mediocre blog article.
- Half read, half skim other, much better blog articles.
- Worry about losing my roster spot because I’m not training this week.
- Stare listlessly at the pile of books I’ve been planning to read.
- Read a book that I’ve already read. Twice.
- Color code the next month in my planner.
- Literally ANYTHING other than going to the gym and training.
The truth is that I FEEL so busy but when I look at that list, I know that I’m not. I could easily train instead of eating cookies or fit in 30 minutes here and 15 minutes there.
But I’m embracing the suck.
Stressing about it won’t make it suck less.
And I know that I’ll come out of it.
This! For me there is the additional stress of recently moving to a new city and a new team, so I don’t know anyone else well enough to feel connected at training and they don’t know me well enough to miss me or ask why I wasn’t there.
I am working on making a connection, though – I went to an extra-curricular event earlier this week and volunteered to NSO at a bout where I am not on the roster so that I can join the road trip.
Baby steps until I come out of this! (And I know you will too!)
I agree. It’s that much harder when you don’t have people supporting you. Whether purposefully or just due to circumstance. I just find it surprisingly comforting to know that it’s not forever and things will be fine. Baby steps!
I almost NEVER get sick, but this week I did. I missed a practice and two workouts, and it bothers me. I had perfect attendance for practices this year! No more.
I love training. I have a tendency to overtrain, and your blog + the resting HR monitor on my Fitbit are helping me modulate that. I’ve yet to play my first bout, but it’s coming up, so it bothered the hell out of me to miss a practice. So this post came at a good time for me. Missing one practice isn’t going to ruin any progress that I’m making.
I think training a bit too much is common. You might find that taking it slightly easier for the next week or two leading up to the bout will produce some great results. Especially if you’ve been pushing yourself really, really hard. Giving your body a chance to rest and recover can have you making some big gains too. Good luck in your first bout of the year!