Sometime in late December, I fell off the fitness wagon. I could blame it on a nasty cold and a particularly hilly run on Christmas Eve, but the truth is, I think after months of training, riding, and racing, my body and brain decided they were just about done. D-O-N-E done.
For a while I beat myself up about all the things I was not doing, and all the upcoming events where I would pay the price. Then I decided to stop worrying and just take the month of January off, in part because as a friend pointed out, my definition of falling off the wagon has changed substantially from years past.
Because I was still moving, just not in the way I had the year before. I started swimming (which is a story for another time about how, it turns out, I have been swimming incorrectly my whole life). I ran sporadically. I rode my bike in the woods when I could. I walked with my dog. And I dusted off the Xbox 360 and danced with my daughter (I do not have moves like Jagger).
And I contemplated what training would look like when I re-started in February.
While I want to be someone who has a set fitness schedule, the reality is our life cannot accommodate too many set pieces. Fitness, for me, needs to be flexible. Adaptable to the ebbs and flows of our schedule.
So, instead of setting a training schedule for the month, I’m going to set it each week, recognizing that weather, client appointments, kids, pool closings, whatever may disrupt. Putting them on the schedule helps make sure the workouts happen – important appointments with myself, that make me feel better, stronger, happier and more focused.
I’m going to continue to be creative, and take the opportunities when I find them – a run at lunch, back-to-back trainer sessions on the weekend, swimming in the morning, dance sessions when I want something different, outdoor rides when the weather is good.
And I’m going to be prepared – bringing workout clothes to the office, keeping the bike setup on the trainer – for when those moments become available.
These are the ways I will make working out work for me. (How about you?)