Finding Time to Workout in 2020

I feel like 2020 has run on “COVID time” – stretches of boredom, followed by unsettling moments of apprehension, followed by days that pass in the blink of an eye. It all feels like a blur. Anyone else agree?

The first few months of social distancing were really tough. Almost overnight, the whole world had its routines disrupted and its plans derailed. Places I used to frequent – the office, the gym – became places I had to immediately avoid.

Through trial and error, I’ve found a few ways to stay on track, even while juggling more responsibilities than ever. Here’s what worked for me. I hope some of these tips might help you as well.

Your average day in the garage gym.

Keeping a Strict Schedule

Daily routines can be monotonous sometimes, but consistency is essential to achieving your goals. With so much uncertainty right now, keeping a strict schedule helps me feel grounded and focused. I exercise after work every day – no excuses. It’s just something I do, no different than eating lunch or brushing my teeth.

Having specific, non-negotiable time set aside really helps me mentally prepare for what I need to accomplish on a specific day.

I’ve heard someone say that making a decision is actually the hardest part. If you wholeheartedly commit to something, it’s less stressful than deciding whether or not you are going to do it. I think this idea applies here.

Planning My Workouts in Advance

Sort of in line with my first point, I plan all my workouts in advance. I know that on Sundays I’ll be doing legs, Mondays I’ll be doing biceps, Wednesday is shoulders, etc. I track and plan all my workouts in the Bolt app (more about that in my recent blog post).

Knowing exactly what I need to do eliminates wasting time: I get right into my workout and make the most of the limited time I have.

Asking For Help

I’m fortunate to be able to lean on family and friends for childcare. I used to be terrible at asking for help, but it’s a skill I’m trying to improve upon.

Sometimes, when we have a sitter, my husband and I are able to work out together. But other days, he’s taking care of the chores, running errands, or helping with Daphne while I exercise. I do the same for him.

Keep in mind that help comes in many forms. If my parents offer to have dinner at their house, I take them up on it. It’s always nice to see them AND it gives me back an hour of prep and cleanup – time I could use for a workout.

Basically, if someone is available and offering to help you, allow them. Then, be sure to return the favor when you can.

Including My Daughter

If you need to workout and don’t have childcare, include your kid(s).

I try to show Daphne some basic moves and encourage her to jump rope or do jumping jacks with me. Not only is it a great bonding time, it sets the foundation for a healthy lifestyle as she gets older.

I’ve seen Sarah Bowmar (@sarah_bowmar) lifting with her new baby in a little seat beside her. Andrea Allen (@deliciouslyfitnhealthy) always takes great videos with her kiddos running around.

If there’s one thing that 2020 has taught me, it’s to be adaptable and see opportunities everywhere.

This wouldn’t be a blog post without a cheesy quote, so I’ll leave you with this: “I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.” —Jimmy Dean

If you enjoyed this post, please follow along on Instagram @pearlsandbarbells and be sure to hit the “Follow” button! – Haileigh

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