In addition to running ReEvolution Health – a seemingly never ending task given the various clients I counsel, talks that I give, paperwork that I juggle, and blog posts and webpages that I write – I also direct a Masters program and teach classes at a local university, consult for various companies and organizations, travel for work and pleasure, shop for and cook lunch and dinner for my family, run a variety of personal errands, and try to keep up on the numerous chores and home maintenance tasks that come with owning a 200-year-old historical townhome that is slowly being renovated.
Not only do I struggle with getting all of this work done with a mere twenty-four hours in a day, I must also find time to spend with my friends and family. That should be a priority in my life but all too-often becomes secondary to my professional demands.
Squeezing in my workouts can thus be a challenge. I try to get in at least 4-5 strength training sessions weekly, along with 1-2 sprint or cardio sessions (such as the 30-minute MMA-style class that my gym offers throughout the week, which not only gives me a good aerobic workout but also helps me release a lot of stress by allowing me to hit things very hard without getting arrested for assault).
I’ve often wondered how successful health and wellness coaches and entrepreneurs like Mark Sisson and Dave Asprey do it. Do they drink seventeen cups of coffee a day? Do they rely on a professional and personal staff of twenty? Do they even sleep? Are they even human?
It was nice to learn that we all have faced the same problems.
Yesterday, in a soul wrenching Instagram post, founder of the Whole30 program Melissa Hartwig admitted that she too has often struggled with time management, writing:
A few years ago, my 24-hours looked like me working my ass off just trying not to fall apart, as my marriage was crumbling, my business was up in the air, and I was single-parenting my young son. Those 24 hours look NOTHING like the 24 hours I have now.
Her post is worth reading, as are the tens of thousands of comments thanking her for honesty.
Despite what the various fitness gurus and time-management experts say during those 5-minute televised spots on such pop-culture mainstays as the Today Show or Dr. Oz, sometimes we simply do not have enough time to get to the gym or plan and cook a healthy meal for our kids.
And that’s okay.
Living a healthy lifestyle is about more than religiously working out or eating right.
Sometimes the most important thing we can do – what we need to prioritize with the limited time that we have – is maintain our mental health, our emotional health, and the health of our personal relationships with our loved ones. It’s about figure out what is most important for you and making time for that.
So sleep in that extra hour with your husband, spend the afternoon playing with your kids, and order that Chinese takeout if you are just too harried or tired to cook. There’s no guilt or shame in doing that, and it’s as important to your health and wellbeing as getting to your Zumba class. After all, the gym will still be there tomorrow.