Finding Flexibility

When I sit down with one of my new clients, we talk about fitting exercise into their week. “What does that look like in your ideal week?” I ask. Her response is her Plan A. We map out some days/times she will exercise and put it on the gym’s weekly schedule. If she’s having a normal week, those are the times I will see her at the gym.

But many weeks are not “normal” and we need a back up plan. Probably a couple of back up plans. Plan B will be other times she can get to the gym. Plan C will be a workout at home. Plan D will be “Do Something”, which typically comprises of going for a run, walk or swim. Some weeks the “Do Something” is the best we get. It won’t get you ahead, but it will keep you from slipping back.

Developing flexible strategies are what keep us consistent, and if you haven’t yet made a few “back up” plans, I recommend you do. It doesn’t require a lot of effort, but it does require a commitment. A minimum commitment to at least “Do Something” each week.

I keep a blank weekly template that I update anytime my schedule changes. I have my “go to” workouts at home: TabatasInterval and these 10 min workouts.

When all else fails, I grab my iphone with my playlist and head outdoors to run a loop that I set up when we moved to our home. If you’ve never set up a good running/walking loop for yourself, here are a few tips to creating one:

1) Head out for a certain amount of time. If you want to be outside for 30 min, just walk or run in one direction for half the time and turn around and head back. You can use an app such as Runkeeper to track your route or you can physically drive your car (if possible) on your route to determine your distance.

2) Create three variations of your loop: a normal loop, an extended loop and a short loop. This gives you flexibility to choose which one will serve you best that day. It gives you some structure, and ultimately peace of mind that you completed a workout, even if it wasn’t your Plan A. I personally have a 1.8, 3.1 and 4 mile loop that I use depending on what the day looks like.

3) Settle into your new route until you get bored. Then develop a new one. I find that when I’m on a new route for the first time, I’m distracted and checking my watch to see how far I’ve gone, how much time it has been (even when it tells me). It’s tough to settle in, focus on breathing, pace and form because I’m too distracted figuring out where I am and how much further I need to go. Keep the same route for awhile so you can perfect the route. Know when the hill is coming, when the traffic could be tricky, what side of the road is best. Minimize your variables so you can focus on the most important one: you.

4) Finally, get the workout you need. If you’re time pressed, increase your intensity with some intervals and take the short route. If you need to clear your mind, don’t come back until it’s been accomplished. If you’re training for a race and need to train for endurance, persevere until your distance has been covered. Then, when you’re done, you’re done. You’re not fretting over what you needed but didn’t get.

Because of the many roles we play, we are flexible by nature. Use your ability to be flexible to create some consistency in your exercise routine. You will feel so much better.

Keep moving! 


Note: As a fitness coach, it is my highest priority to keep my clients motivated and on track despite obstacles, distractions and just human nature.  I work hard to determine what motivates each client and how much grace and truth they need to move forward.  We all need a supportive environment to maintain healthy lifestyle and habits. If you are searching for that kind of environment, check out what we do here at CrossFit 1088: Hosted by Blue Wave Fit, where our mission is to bring CrossFit to All Ages. http://www.bluewavefitocala.com or email me at: priscilla@bluewavefitocala.com

Priscilla Jones and her husband, Brian, are owners of CrossFit 1088: Hosted by Blue Wave Fit.  Their mission is to bring CrossFit to All Ages in Ocala, FL while raising their circus of four children. 

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