I used to schedule social engagements for after work hours and get to bed just as the 11:00pm news was starting. Of course, I didn't usually get out of bed until 60 minutes before I needed to leave for work, either, so I suppose it sort of worked out. (It didn't really, though: I was chronically sleep deprived, my anxiety and depression were both in high gear, and I was 100 pounds overweight. If you discount all of that, though, I was a model of good habits.)
Nowadays, at close to a healthy weight and training for two half marathons plus a 15K (all in the next 11 weeks), my schedule looks a bit different:
- Monday morning, 7:00am - Pilates Reformer class
- Tuesday morning, 7:30am - Vinyasa Yoga class
- Wednesday morning, 6:00am - leave for short interval run (between 30 and 45 minutes, depending on which week I'm at on the training schedule, but I always add in enough straight walking to bring my total time to 60 minutes)
- Thursday morning, 7:00am - Pilates Reformer class; Thursday noon - Vinyasa Yoga class (in the gym at work)
- Friday morning, 6:00am - another short interval run
- Saturday morning, 7:00am - Weight Watchers meeting; 9:30am - 60 minute walk
- Sunday morning, 6:00am during Winter/5:30am during Spring/Summer - long slow distance run (between 3 and 10 miles, depending on which week I'm at on the training schedule)
|A display of ill temper after 7 miles of run/walk intervals in the driving rain last Sunday|
In addition, on every work day I add in 20 minutes of laps around the interior of our building at work with a flight of stairs between each floor; there are four floors and I walk each one twice) plus a 30 minute walk outside with my teammates and - when I'm able to leave work on time - a 30-45 minute walk with TCB and our Pug after work and before dinner.
On weekends, we still walk the Pug and also go for a walk after dinner.
On Sundays after my long slow distance run (and after breakfast), we go somewhere to walk for a while - our favorite location is the nearby indoor mall because there's no need for sunscreen or extra layers of clothing to keep warm.
I don't accept many social engagements on weekday evenings because I'm beat from work and also because I need to get to bed at a reasonable hour in order for my body to have energy in the morning for training or cross training activities. This change has been very good for me because I'm far more selective in the commitments I make to friends or community service organizations now rather than overcommitting and then not being fully present. I give considerable thought to which people and activities will contribute to my overall health and happiness, and, by extension, those that will not, and I choose where to invest my time accordingly.
Making time for what's important is simple but it isn't always easy. How do you fit self-care into your daily routine?