How do you find the time?

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life212 Comments


I posted this on Facebook yesterday when I got back from the gym:


And within a few minutes, someone had commented, "I don't know how you find the time to do this all!"

Funny thing is, I had just had a post-workout conversation with Dan about this very subject, about being fortunate enought to have both the time as well as the financial resources to go to a gym and exercise.

Time is something that on any given day, we all have roughly the same amount to work with: 24 hours. In that 24 hours, certain things have to happen. Sleep, work, cooking, cleaning, child rearing, pet rearing, Facebook posting and perusing, etc. Some things are always going to take up more of our time, leaving less for things we deem optional. (I'm talking directly to YOU Facebook.)

Since February 2009, I've been back in the world of self-employment. The great thing about my set up is that I can make the time to run, and hit the gym, and prepare somewhat healthier meals for me and my family. I am fully aware of how fortunate I am to have the time to do these things.

But I'll be honest with you, I only have made the time since January, when I started moving more and eating less. There were a whole 10 months after I got laid off from Simple Scrapbooks magazine in 2009 where I had all the time in the world, technically, but did nothing other than move less and eat more.

Then there was that time in 1997, after Aidan was born and I went back to work full-time when she was 4 months old. Back then, I also decided to move more and eat less. I woke up every day at 5 a.m. to do step aerobics with Cher (on video, mind you, she didn't come to my house every day in person) and her trainer, Kelly Roberts. Every. Single. Day. For a solid year.

That was an example where I truly had to make the time. I didn't have the money for a gym membership nor did I have spare hours in my day with a new baby. I had to take some extreme measures to make more time. And by making that time, I dropped the majority of the baby weight I was trying to lose.

My fitness binges have come on gone. At some points it's been hard to find time to conveniently make it happen. Pair that with a lack of motivation, and fitness falls off the map of my day with lightning speed.

Right now, I'm in a fortunate place where I have both the time and the motivation. I'm also striving to make fitness non-negotiable. Watching "Oprah"? Negotiable. Running 3 to 4 days a week, non-negotiable.

Where are you at? Do you have time but no motivation? Do you have the motivation but no time? Do you find time despite the fact that your life is already too busy? Or are you like I was for most of my adult life: fitness? What the hell is that?

Inquiring minds want to know.


Cathy ZielskeHow do you find the time?

212 Comments on “How do you find the time?”

  1. #1
    madeline St onge

    I have the time and most days the motivation to walk 2 miles in the morning, weather permitting. Today is going to be a no walk day because of the weather. Do not have the resources to join a gym unfortunatley. So I just need to go with the flow

  2. #3
    Wendy C

    I really relate to the old adage, if you want something done, ask a busy person. and in my own life, i understand that. i get more done, the busier i am. and i love it. πŸ˜‰

  3. #5

    I can’t believe you got up at 5am every day and worked out for a year with a baby! that is impressive!!! she must have been a good baby to give you a good enough sleep to do that! I’m so impressed πŸ™‚

  4. #6

    This is a great post Cathy. With the impending birth of my second child, and me being a fitness addict (yes, I consider myself an addict to working out) I am already planning when I will do my workouts and how I will arrange my time to make sure those workouts happen. One thing that helps me keep motivated is having a goal. For me, it is triathlons and bettering myself each time I toe the line at the start. Before my daughter was born 6+ years ago, you could not get me to set foot in a gym; once she arrived and I realized how out of shape I was, I decided it was time for a change. I joined a running group and started running. After my first 1/2 marathon I knew i was hooked and I needed to see what else I could accomplish if I set my mind to it.
    I think it is all a matter of setting priorities like you stated. I make it a PRIORITY to do my workouts for a couple of reasons… The most important one is because it makes me feel good, it helps me recharge my energy, and allows me some “me” time. When I do my workouts I am in a better mood, I feel better about myself and I am able to cope that much better with whatever else is thrown my way. To sum it up it makes me happy, and to me that is totally worth it.

  5. #7

    I have a friend I’ve tried to explain this to who is still not getting that the available time is about the choices. Yes, I’m up at 5am to workout & in bed around 9pm but I’m not watching every reality show, I’m selective about which I choose if any & they are all tivo’d. And I have time now to exercise, scrap, read & play hockey. VoilΓ !

  6. #8
    Kendra B

    Unlike everyone else so far, I’m pretty much a slug LOL Every night I go to bed and say “tomorrow is the day” . . . then the alarm goes off and nothing. I feed the pets, get online, and before you know it its time to jump in the shower and start the craziness of the day. I fall in the lack of motivation category LOL Right now I’m suffering from my back being out, so of course I’m SUPER MOTIVATED, but can’t exercise . . . I can barely walk LOL Once its better I hopefully will take the opportunity to become one of the motivated. πŸ™‚

  7. #9

    I am busy but make the time. My enthusiasm comes and goes, and I swear I gained 15 pounds in the first three years after I became a scrapbook addict, but now that I’m a total tennis addict, I am once again highly motivated to exercise more.

    I make time by running at work at lunch hour on the days when I’m not teaching group fitness or hitting tennis balls with one of the boys. My fallback plan is to run on the treadmill or go for a quick spin at the club when the boys have their lessons… even 25 minutes of cardio keep me on track most days.

    I have to say that your posts about your workouts motivate me on the days when I just don’t feel like it… and your posts about your struggles help me feel like I’m not alone in my struggles. So thank you for sharing, Cathy! πŸ™‚

  8. #10
    Judi Haines

    I started about 3months ago making it a set appt. in my day to work out for 1hr a day 4 days a week. I stick to this by having a friend met me at the gym. This way we tend not to skip knowin the other is coming.

  9. #11

    i feel the same as you about fitness right now: is non-negotiable. i work 10 hours a day, so i have to find the time. i go to the gym at least 5 days a week, i’m there from 6am ’til 7am. to be there at 6, i have to be out of bed before 5am. i don’t have kids, but i have a handicapped mom, four pets and a house to look after. it was hard to take almost two hours of my sleep routine at first, but now i believe the early exercise gets me more energised to do what i have to all day long.

  10. #12
    Jennifer L

    I make the time. From about 2:30-3:00 is when I typically leave school, and if I hurry, I can work out at least 20-30 minutes at the gym before my boys get off the bus at 4:15. If I leave school later, I go home and run, even if just a mile. It’s small workout time, but small workouts are better than no workouts. Makes me feel righteous.

  11. #13

    Like you Cathy ~ I have the time and motivation right now and being freelance I can prioratize. I have is a plan b and c to keep me going. B is to deal with bad weather (= go to the gym instead of outside), C is if I’m short of time today (= do get up early and do dvd at home. But what about a plan D for feeling sick / aching (= I’m stuck!!!). I loose momentum very quickly if I don’t keep to a routine and right now I’m stuck! so how do you keep the motivation going at times like this?

  12. #14

    Time but no motivation. My husband and I just moved to Oslo, Norway from Seattle for work – well, for his work. With no kids and all the time in the world since I am not yet working, I find it hard to get motivated to walk the block and a half to the gym. The crazy thing is I’m speaking as someone who used to play recreational soccer, go to spin and kickboxing and had a personal training, hiked regularly and even climbed a mountain this past June. My mojo is gone. I think I left it in Seattle. I’ve got the extra inches to prove it.

  13. #15

    I have time but little motivation other than wanting to avoid a personal relationship with a cardiologist. So I do go to a gym which our city provides at a pretty darn good cost. I have started taking some free classes and doing yoga again but it really isn’t enough. I need that walking and elliptical. Frequent vacations are my downfall with ‘forced’ eating with my dh more often than I’d eat at home.

    However, in my younger days, poorer days, i.e my 40s!, I used to walk to and from work. It was 1 mile each way and I had no option for parking so it was rain or shine, heat and humidity or breeze, and I lost 2 dress sizes in less than a year. (Dresses…remember wearing them to work???) I also came home with enough energy to deal with an obnoxious teenage daughter. sigh…thinking fondly of my younger metabolism and knees.

  14. #16

    The last year I was living in Paris (the one in France, not in Texas), I went to the gym everyday, seven days a week. every morning. As I was managing my own schedule, it was easy to set my daily meeting with the gym!
    Now that I moved in Tanzania and Iam in theoffice from 7.30am to 7.00pm, it has been harder. decent gym locations which fit my schedule are scarce. As I have been missing rowing, I have imported a rowing machine and I am back on it with diet.
    I am started my own eat less, move more program!!
    I am working on setting the best time for exercising! go!

  15. #17

    Great post Cathy! I am finding it hard to drum up both time and motivation lately. The only thing that comes easy right now are excuses. Ha!

  16. #18

    This time of year, I really have to focus on making the time because it is dark when I leave the house and dark by 5 pm (soon by 4:30 pm) so I have to get going on those days I want to run so I can leave work in time. I have also found that taking my running gear to work and changing at work is a great thing. Once I get home, there is no going out again. I know it will always be a battle but a brief encounter with cancer has been a great motivator for me.

  17. #19

    I’m at the “not making time” place. We don’t have the finances to be able to do fitness classes or have gym memberships, especially here. During the day, I can’t really exercise because my 2-year-old likes to help me exercise. Then starts the craziness of the before supper time. And I hate exercising at night. Morning is my ideal time. I just have to find a way to do something that my little guy can do with me that won’t interrupt. Before we moved, we had an elliptical trainer and it was great; I could pop on there for 20 minutes and my kids would leave me to do it. Now on the eating front, I have no excuses. I eat too much and eat far too much sugar. No hiding behind anything there. πŸ™

  18. #20
    Kip Mitchell

    You’re absolutely right, you have to make the time. In the past,I’ve used a ton of excuses as to why I don’t have time to exercise but no more, especially after getting my last physical report. I’m in my 60’s now and very glad I did do a lot of exercising when I was younger as it comes back easier now and I’m not totally out of muscle tone. I’d say to younger people, don’t wait until your Dr. tells you you’re pre diabetic and that you need to diet and exercise- prevent that at all cost. Cut the carb’s and concentrate on the good carbs, cut the fat and the sodium. Move, Move, Move!

  19. #21
    Alice Golden

    Oh I had to post because I used to work out religiously to that same Cher video after my first baby was born!! It was a good workout, but I always had to laugh at Cher in her black fishnet workout tights πŸ™‚ A friend gave me a copy of a recent Vanity Fair and Cher is on the cover – she looks the same! Would have killed back then for Kelly’s body – she was amazing… I’m back at the point where I am trying to regain my motivation.

    People say the same thing about scrapbooking “don’t know where you find the time”… it’s all about priorities and what you are willling to give up in order to make something happen (sleep, TV watching, computer, etc.)

  20. #22

    Cathy, I have been running long distance for 11 years now. I started when my boys were 8 and 10. I don’t do the gym, I just don’t enjoy it or running on the treadmill so for me it’s year round outdoors and I have a mini-gym with treadmill/recumbent/weight machine set up in my basement. I live in the Northeast so runnin the winter means lots of layers. I use the home treadmill in extreme weather and it set up my road bike on a bike trainer for the winter.

    Anyway, the key for me was to plan ahead and make it a non-negotiable part of my daily life. Run home after work, run to kids balls games while hubby drives them, run at lunch time,,,,whatever I have to do to make it happen. Now that I have been doing it for so many years it just comes naturally, it’s just part of daily life and I feel a real void if something interfers. My body craves the exercise.

    My backpack full of running gear goes everywhere just in case I can fit in a run sometime. Having a hubby who marathons as well is very helpful because he totally “gets” my need to run.

    I work full-time, have a family, volunteer and run 25-40 miles/week depending on what I’m training for……..I’m not a TV hater but it really is amazing how much time you can free up when you turn off the tube. People ask me how I find the time…my answer is “how could I not find the time to invest in my phycical and mental health”…and the bonus is that I feel better at almost 49 than I ever felt at 29…….

    Keeping on running!!!

  21. #23
    Nancy M

    I know, I know… I have to make the time {for me it was Richard Simmons on video}. This time of year the dark and cold just kills me, I have no motivation whatsoever.

  22. #24
    Susan Adams

    I get up every other day and run 2 miles on my treadmill (first I was too self-conscious to run outside–now MI mornings are too cold for me–looking forward to spring outdoor runs!!). By the time I get to work, I can say “Wow! I already ran today! Yay for me!!!”

  23. #25

    I’m at the “can’t make the time” stage. But I’ve been stuck there, with brief voyages into the land of the exercising, for about 20 years.

    The hard part is my husband who started his own eat less, move more campaign about 18 months ago. Since then, he’s lost ~70 pounds and started running, doing a half marathon last May. He looks terrific and is undoubtedly healthier (bonus for me!). While I want to say he’s obnoxious about the workouts, in reality he’s driven and focused and committed but he doesn’t nag. On the other hand, he’s at the gym for 2 hours a day. Add that to the 3.5 hour commute he has and working for 9 hours and he’s gone from 6:15 am to ~9 pm. Frankly, we miss him. Me and our daughter. She’s 16 and has his focus but applies it to school so feels she doesn’t have time for the gym (we’ve had the discussion about priorities and making time and funny how often Facebook fits into that conversation!). I’m a new lawyer working 10+ hours a day and have chosen to spend all my “extra” time with my daughter.

    I suppose, really, I feel like my husband’s focus on exercise makes me feel like our daughter and I are lower priorities for him. But exercise is important…so how do you balance that?

  24. #26
    Carrie O

    It’s so funny that you asked that question today, I’m a new follower of yours for the past three months and I’m a stay at home mom and should have no excuses for not excerising. Everytime I read your posts regarding excerise I feel motivated (the same way I do when watching the Biggest Loser with a bag of chips in my hand). I tell myself let’s start tomorrow and for some reason I haven’t found that tomorrow yet, but today you have motivated me and I will get on the treadmill today! No excuses….

  25. #27
    Kristen Stewart

    I have a full-time job and like you, fitness is non-negotiable. You have to be in that place where you want to do it in order to make the time. I get up at 4AM every morning. I go to the gym 3 mornings and run with friends 2 mornings during the week. When people tell me they don’t have time, I know that they are just not ready to make it a priority, b/c if you want to find the time, you will. It may not be easy at first, but after awhile, you get used to it. You do have to sacrifice and juggle. I watch virtually no TV and am in bed by 9PM…it is a commitment, but for me, well worth it.

  26. #28

    Great post Cathy. I once heard someone say “You have 24 hours in your wallet. How will you choose to spend them?” I have had the motivation to work out for a long time (baby weight hello!), and it’s only recently that I have been making the time to do so. I’m now waking up a full hour to an hour and a half earlier than usual so that I can work out, plus get online stuff out of the way before Kieran wakes in the morning. It’s HARD but it’s working.

  27. #29

    I hate when people say to me, I’d work out too if I had the time…you have to MAKE time I tell them. I work full time, have a seven year old that is constantly on the move and in activities and we go to the YMCA at least four times a week together. I do long runs on Sunday mornings while my husband and son sleep in and go for short runs on Thursday mornings before work because I don’t have to be at work until 9AM instead of 7AM like the other days. The Y really has been my savior and has helped me to make working out a priority.

  28. #30

    I’ll be honest with you-I’ve been motivated I just have NO TIME. IN May I rana half marathon-I trained from January onwards but this Fall my M.Ed courses have sucked all the fitness time out of my schedule. Other than getting up at the ass-crack of dawn (in the dark, leaving a cosy bed and husband) I can’t fit it in. I literally leave school (I’m a teacher) at 4, go home, my lovely husband cooks me dinner while I work, then I go back at it until 8/9. Then at 10 I go to bed. I can’t exercise in the night because it makes me too hyper to go to bed. It’s too dark in the morning to run…I know it all sounds like one big excuse but I WANT to run. I want to do it. I just feel like I have NO TIME!!! Any suggestions?

  29. #31

    i go to bed around 8pm and wake up at 440am and go to the gym. This past season, I became a triathlete so I would swim a few days in the early morning in the lake!! and we would run the other days. before that i would run about 5 days a week and do weight lifting the other. now that we are in the off season, I weight lift 3 days a week and run a few other days.

    getting up early just works for me. when i go back to work next year it will be interesting how i fit all this in but i will need to. it’s an outlet i can’t let go of

  30. #32
    Cynthia Friese-Hassanein

    I have tons of time since I got laid off too. I have definitely stepped up my game with creativity. But, I found a lot of time for wasting. surfing the web for pretty things I could not buy:) And Social media. So, I have finally got off facebook:) The time I save now is awesome:) That extra 15-20 minutes. I use now to enjoy reading blogs again instead. Then I get off the internet and do the things I need to do:) Hopefully working out can be a part of that soon:) Great topic.

  31. #33

    I have always struggled to make time for exercise. I’m a single mom to two kids and work full time at a job that I have 1hour + commute too. So…I found a group of peeps at work who workout at lunch. We started by hitting the gym 5 days a week. Then we discoverd we are only 2 miles away from a state park with the most amazing trails! Our goal is to run 10 miles a week. We also just discovered the rush of trail running. Truly a nice break in the running routine. I’ve also decided to try the P90X extreme home work out. I’m on day 4 and it is THE MOST challenging thing I have done. Keep up the good work and know that you inspire me!

  32. #34

    i have the time and no motivation. Im a bit like you at the beginning. I’m not a runner, I can’t ever see me liking exercise so I dont do it. Bad person I am. I am trying to get off my ass and do some movement by buying Just Dance 2 for the Wii. Not exactly hardcore but it gets me off the couch because it is fun!

  33. #35
    Sabrina L

    I have time but no motivation. I’m exhausted all of the time. My head knows that if I exercized than I wouldn’t feel this way but I’m not at the point yet where I can bring myself to do anything about it.

  34. #36

    It’s a struggle. I work full time, in my home, but for a large corporation … so there’s this expectation that I’m available from 8-5 every day. I have a husband that leaves for work at 5:30am … and I cannot drive in the dark (eye issues).

    That problem alone squeezes my day pretty tight, especially now when it gets dark at 5:30pm. Going to a gym just isn’t an option.

    Spring/summer seemed to go really well – but then again, no school & lots of daylight. Right now, I’m trying to find at least 30 minutes in the evening to get on the treadmill. If it’s a nice day – I might venture out for a run or walk at lunch time.

    Again. It’s a struggle. Oh how I’d love to get my son off to school, come home, workout – and get on with my day. But you know what they say … be careful what you wish for LOL!

  35. #37

    It is so very, very true what you wrote. I have been retired now for over 4 years and one of my goals before I retired was to do more exercise. BUT…… it is only the last few weeks that I have made time to walk 5 out of 7 days a week at least. I have put a reminder on my Outlook pop up reminders which says “at least half an hour’s exercise today” and I feel very guilty if I ‘snooze’ it! It really has helped me to keep focussed!

  36. #38
    Karen G

    For me it is movtivation regarding changing my eating habits. I exercise moderately most days, but I eat atrociously. I can’t find the motivation to change that, so I stay at my same weight 10-15 pounds overweigth. Yuck.

  37. #44

    I just try to get back onto the track. For me, I know what my plans are (gym two days, run 4 days, with family gym nights now tossed in at night, but that is more for fun and play.) And i just keep plugging away, knowing that I will feel better in my head if i get it done!

  38. #45

    Colleen, this happens. I mean, I have been there so many times when I was active, then… meh. Nothing. Its a tricky thing! FYI: Seattle always makes me feel homesick. I was born there, raised in Everett. Sigh.

  39. #49

    Just ran my 1st 25K on Sunday…so much fun! People now think I am officially crazy. I am asked “How can running 15.5 miles be considered fun?” OMG…it feels sooo good knowing you finished, I feel like I can do ANYTHING now. I am preparing for my 1st marathon in January and have put running as my priority. It is all about choices, I don’t really watch tv anymore and have “runs” with friends instead of “going out to lunch” with friends. Like the old quote says, “You can do anything, just not everything.”

  40. #50

    My third son arrived in April – that makes him 7 months old and I’m still carry 30 pounds. THIRTY! I can’t believe it, the weight fell off with the other two, but this time around I’m 35 and its not going anywhere. I seriously lack motivation. I think I would find the money & time, if I were motivated. I seriously need to find that place where I’m sick and tired of still wearing maternity clothes – for real!

  41. #51

    This was a great post Cathy. Good for you getting up everyday at 5a.m. that’s awesome. You’ve been doing great this year and by reading your journey helps to motivate me. I know it’s good for me and that I have to just do it even though it’s hard. I try to walk/jog 2 miles every day. The weather is pretty cold and always windy now so might have to start going to a gym which I really won’t like. I am a stay at home mom and once the kids are on the bus I have my w/o clothes on and just go right out the door behind them because once I start on chores, scrapping, surfing etc. then I put it off. So thank you Cathy for being my motivator and sharing your journey with us.

    p.s. I should mention my husband who encourages me and supports me and makes time to take care of kids/house on weekends so that I can go to track. It does help if you have a support system.

  42. #53

    I have time but definitely no motivation! Reading your blog is motivating, but still not enough to get out of my chair! One of these days…

  43. #54

    Recently I have made the time for a Zumba class one night a week. DH takes care of the bedtime routine for our son and then cooks my supper for when I’m back home. The rest of my exercise regime is fitted into my normal day ~ I walk everywhere that is possible to do so, and I mean everywhere. That’s about the best I can do … for now.

  44. #55
    Christine H

    I too am fortunate to have some flexibility in my life. But some weeks, no way. But in Jun2009, I made the decision to be better. I told a friend of mine…I bet if the doctor told you your child would die an ugly death at an early age if you didn’t take him/her to the gym 4 days a week for an hour starting right away you would move heaven and earth to make sure that happened. Well, it is true….at least way more likely if you don’t get moving….and our families want us around healthy and active for as long as possible. It isn’t selfish, it isn’t indulgent and, I believe, we have a responbility to ourselves and our families to take care of the great vessels God blessed our souls with while on this earth. But for moms of little ones, I know how much harder it is than for me with a teenager I can leave alone and go do what I need to do. (JUN2009- 320 pounds…NOV2010-210 pounds….still going)

  45. #56
    Leslie @ {Tiny Wings}

    Ugh — this is a topic that’s been very near and dear to me lately. I’ve definitely got the motivation, but the time has been non-existent. Over the summer, when the kids were off, I had much more time to focus on my own fitness pursuits. (I even accomplished some running goals! Woot!) But as soon as school began, all of that opportunity flew out the window! Since I have to drive my son to school at 6:30am every morning, I no longer can get up early to run. (Getting up at 5 is painful enough!!) And then the evenings are filled with their sports and homework and dinner, so if and when I finally meet the treadmill, it’s after 8pm!! So frustrating! I guess that makes me a weekend warrior now!

  46. #59

    As a busy, semi-working mom of two young boys, I could definitely scoot by and say, “aw, I’m too busy!” to work out. I work out nearly every weekday, and I find that, after working out, I am so much MORE productive for the rest of my day (not to mention happier AND slimmer!) that it more than makes up for the time I took out of my schedule to fit in that workout.

    You have to find something that works for your particular situation, and everyone’s life is different. For me, it was all about finding a gym that my boys LOVED to visit (if you have one near you, I’d HIGHLY recommend Lifetime Fitness)… all three of us look forward to going, which takes away that mom guilt of dropping them somewhere they don’t want to be!

  47. #61

    oh my God! the black fishnets! i was going to post something about her working out in that black teddy! ha. But it WAS a good workout and I loved Kelly Roberts! I bought more of her tapes too!

    And you are SO right when people say, I dont know how you have time to do that! Too funny!

  48. #62

    I had major health issues this year. I had back surgery and was diagnosed with nonhodgkins lymphoma. No worries – all is good. My good health has to be my
    priority! I am a nurse and work three 12 hour shifts a week. It is extremely hard to work out on those days. But, at least 3 out of 4, everything (except worship on Sunday mornings) takes a backseat to my health. I make plans with me every morning. For me, being as healthy and as strong as possible is the most important thing. I got my wake up call! To keep me going, I just think about how good it feels when I am done. You are a wonderful inspiration, Cathy! So glad to read your blog! Your humor is the “icing on the cake”! (please excuse the food metaphor).

  49. #63

    Sorry I am definitely in the what the hell is that category, and at the moment I don’t have the financial resources to do classes or join a gym, but even if I did have that cash spare, I think I was born without the motivation gene !!

  50. #64
    Tammy M.

    I’m with ya there Cathy! Since I started my part-time job (albeit it’s only 7 hours a week, but hey 7 hours out of my week is a lot!!) I have had to adjust my fitness schedule…the only time I have to jog is right before I pick up the kiddos from school. I’m sure my boys love smelling my sweaty self after school, but oh well…maybe it will get them started on their homework quicker?? nah…oh well.

    I’ve had to adjust and tweak my schedule, but I have found a way to squeeze it in there and I’m like you…there is no compromise with it since it’s about the only free time I get alone (other than at work) and I NEED MY ALONE TIME!! lol!!

    The thing now is, it’s starting to get pretty cold, damp and chilly here in Ohio…not sure what my alternative is going to be…can’t really afford a treadmill (at least not the one I’d like), then there is the gym and that may be my seasonal option…still debating on that…hate paying for a gym membership when God’s great outdoors is free…lol!

  51. #65
    Julie E

    Hi all! I really found my ‘me’ time about a year ago when my son turned 12 and then I could leave the house for an hour here and there, and he could keep an eye on my younger one as well. In my family, the sad reality was that my hubby kind of took first priority when it came to doing things for himself – he’s a super competitive cyclist, and he trains a lot. I don’t know why this just naturally happened, and I accepted this and stayed home. I worked around his schedule, leaving little time for me. I think that we as mothers tend to sacrifice our own needs, and I truly wish that in the past I had demanded of myself more time to take care of myself. I am now a happier mother and wife and woman, and I am FIT! For me, getting in shape was made so much easier by joining a super supportive running group (I’d never run in my LIFE!!) and I connected with one run buddy and we hold eachother accountable for being there day in and day out. But believe me, I was nervous those first few times. I joked that I did not sleep that whole night before our first group run, but I was serious! But I didn’t collapse, and no one laughed at my ability, and I just kept going back. I don’t think I ever find running ‘easy’. On very rare occasions I do find in enjoyable. But I love the group, and I love how I feel afterwards. And as I run down the road and cars full of sedentary people pass me by, I feel glad that I am out moving my body and doing this for myself πŸ™‚

  52. #66

    It’s not an option for me this time. I am getting up every day early – 5:45 – 6:00 am to walk at least 3 – 4 miles before the family gets up. It is MY time. It is all I get. And I am starting to like me more now that i make time for me.

  53. #67
    Katie Scott

    “Right now, I’m in a fortunate place where I have both the time and the motivation. I’m also striving to make fitness non-negotiable. Watching “Oprah”? Negotiable. Running 3 to 4 days a week, non-negotiable.”

    I want to cut & paste this & stick it somewhere. That’s it exactly. Fortunately, I’ve had the motivation & determination since this summer too. I don’t really have the time, but I have made exercising (and scrapbooking) my non-negotiables so they are working in my already busy schedule. And happy to report, I’m 1/2 way to my goal of losing 50 pounds – which means I’ve lost 25 pounds so far.

  54. #68

    I make the time to run on my treadmill when I put my almost 2 year old down for his nap. This means not doing some cleaning I maybe should do for the day.

  55. #69
    Lori Massicot

    Wow! I was just thinking about this yesterday. I feel rushed right now with everything going on. I make my “to do” lists and realized yesterday I need to start writing down 45 minutes…exercise. No matter what it is, gym, P90X, a long walk or a short run…I have to do it. This time of year I pack on the pounds and I’m worried without exercise I will end up on New Years Day miserable.

    Thank you for this post…truly motivating and so true for all of us!!!

  56. #70

    I have recently (The past 3 years) been struggling with major depression and have not had the motivation to exercise. Just last week I was diagnosed with PCOS – basically a hormonal problem that makes me insulin resitant. Weight gain plus no motivation is not pretty, believe me! With a change in diet and the knowledge of what is going on inside me, I have found the motivation to exercise. With aerobics and jogging four days a week for the past two weeks I have lost 5 pounds. I know it’s not a lot, but it’s a start. I took a picture of myself last week to start documenting my journey (Thanks for the template!) and I was shocked at what I look like. Hopefully by this time next year I will be healthy and fit! Thanks for the inspiration, Cathy! It’s very much appreciated!

  57. #71

    It used to be that the best thing that happened in a given day at our house was a solid nap – we were terribly sleep deprived for about 7 years with children who double-teamed us with bad nights for one reason or another. Brutal. I ate about it, a lot. We recovered enough over the last year that I went to a doctor to get help and lost 25 pounds, mainly by avoiding eating bread and sugar, both of which only make me want to eat more bread and sugar. =] Then I quit my job to have more time to work with my most challenging child, and now I am stalled on the wieght loss. My priority is figuring out how to manage with less money and make good use out of the time I have, and I have cut back again on the blog reading and computer time, but need to add in regular walks, at least. Still, my kid is doing WAY better in school, sleep has improved bunches, though we still have a bad night at least once a week or so, and I am finally getting to make progress on a lot of things we had let go since our first kid was born. It’s slow, and to me it’s painfully frustrating that it’s not happening faster, but I am trying to remember that every step forward helps. I will get to the walking and I am working on the eating right, it will just take time. 40 more pounds to go, but at a pound a week, by this time next year I could actually be svelte. =]

  58. #72
    cindy b.

    Cathy..I LOVE this post!! I can relate to everything you talked about. Now that I am in ‘fitness mode’ and when I hear people say that they just don’t have the time I want to just say..oh PLEEEEASE! That’s what I thought 2 years ago when I made those ‘excuses’. EVERYONE has the same 24 hours in a day and we get to choose how we spend the extra time aside from work. Now, I make it a PRIORITY to go to the gym. Laudry to do? Throw it in before I leave and guess what? The kiddos or hubby can throw it in the dryer just as good as I can!! πŸ˜‰ Cobwebs to clean? They’ll wait another day or two or three. I’ve got muscle to build, fat to lose and get that exercise ‘high’ so when I come home I am happier, healthier and more productive. WOOHOO!!!

  59. #73

    I have been making the time. There’s a spare 45 minutes in my day when I get off work, before my husband is off, before my kids get picked up from school, when I can do whatever I want. I can take a nap, I can read, I can go mindlessly on the computer, I can watch Oprah, I can knit, I can get started on dinner, I can eat something unhealthy and then pretend to not have an insatiable appetitite when I eat with my family (I’ve done all those things). But recently I’ve been changing my clothes, putting on shoes, grabbing my ipod and running 2-3 miles. And yes I’ve lost weight and yes it feels good, but I also feel guilty every day about the plethera of other things I could/should have done with that time.

    And I just had to say also that a blog post of yours the other day really resonanted with me, about knowing better than to equate your self-worth & happiness with being skinny, but still feeling that way. My husband left me at the beginning of October (we’re since back together) and I pretty much did not eat that whole month. I lost 45 lbs in 30 days. I know how bad that is. It didn’t even feel good…it left me feeling weak and sick and created a terrible knot in my stomach. But somewhere deep inside I was glad for the heartache that was causing me to not be able to eat, because I was finally losing some weight and getting closer to looking the only way possible for me to accept myself: thin. And I know how crazy that is and I was ashamed to admit I had felt that way, but I did. It’s so weird and sad that so many of us let our souls believe that if we’re overweight we’re no good and life doesn’t begin till we’re skinny.

    P.S. I love your blog, Cathy, it makes me happy! πŸ™‚

  60. #74

    Isn’t it humbling to know that we get the same 24 hours that Einstein got, or that Mother Teresa got?

  61. #75

    Well, i should have mentioned my biggest motivation: to not gain back all the weight I have lost. On some days, thats pretty big for me. : )

  62. #76

    Good for you, Susan! I predict next spring youll bust it outside! I too began as a self conscious treadmill girl. I still have zero problem with my treadmill. Sometimes, I actually think its a great alternative to heading out into the cold! : )

  63. #77

    That IS a hard question. I know for myself, we just joined the YMCA because a) i knew I could hit the gym to swim 2 days a week while everyone is at school and b) the kids loved the idea. And, true to their initial excitement, they cant wait to go and swim and play basketball or whatever is going on. My daughter has started lap swimming now too. Were using this as family time and hopefully this winter, its going to stick. But, its also just 5 miles from our house. That makes it a bit easier. Wishing you luck in balancing it all!

  64. #80

    Wow!these comments are amazing! To think that most women struggle with our self image so deeply. I have been up and down-mostly down my entire adult life. A few times here and there I have managed to get the exercise need. For the past year or so I have really been working hard. A friend and I have been getting up at early oclock to be at our little gym at 5:00 am. That is pitch black and cold in Utah!

    I have learned something during the last year. I feel better. I didn’t lose any weight for the first year. NONE!! that was awful! However, I realized that I didn’t suffer from winter depression last year. I got my sorry butt out of bed most days before 5AM! That is amazing in and of itself. I am setting an example for my family. I am strong. I have endurance. I can do hard things.

    We are at a crossroads with gym changes, trying to know what to do. I have a strange feeling that I have never had before–I might be able to be an athlete! Strong!
    I haven’t ever felt capable physically– horrible junior high pe teacher stole it from most of us.

    It is a total dance. A fine tuned dance that has highs and lows. The self motivation is the most difficult thing. I hope that others can finally find what it takes to get them off the couch. It has changed my life.

    We make the time–or we don’t!

  65. #82

    you know, that tv thing. Its interesting. I dont watch a lot of it either. I mean, i watch Dexter on Sunday nights and Glee on tuesday nights, and thats pretty much it. It DOES free up your day so much more. (Okay, so i squeeze Oprah in here and there!) I love your post!

  66. #84

    GO GLORIA! I am not a single parent, but I have to believe your schedule is going to be a bit more challenging any way you slice it. Love what you are doing!

  67. #85

    Do it Carrie. Why not? I mean, if you have a treadmill, dang girl! take advantage. Im supporting you all the way! (from the internet of course!)

  68. #88

    Oh man, maybe people will weigh in! Theres been such great comments thus far! I think there are going to be times in your life where quite possibly there is not time. What about walking at lunch? Maybe if they gave you an hour lunch, which as a teacher I dont know if you even get that much time, but you could walk at lunch?

  69. #92
    Kirsten J

    I make the time….and have some new motivation. I’ve walked for years and years. Not to necessarily lose weight, but to get a little light cardio, and mostly to clear my mind. I didn’t think I needed to lose more than maybe 10 pounds, just mostly to firm up. This year my husband ended up “between jobs” and we’re really lucky not to be too strapped. I work part-time, bookkeeping and choosing my own hours. And we’re going on a cruise this winter, so I finally decided to join my husband at the gym (actually, he dragged me there, almost kicking and screaming)…he showed me the ropes and has been my personal trainer (at first, we did our fair share of arguing, but now, it’s my favorite time of the day). So for 2 months we’ve been at it, and he says he sees a real difference. Some days are crazy busy – you phrased the roller coaster of life perfectly – but we’ve motivated each other, and say “even if we only have 20 minutes, spending it at the gym, or even walking around the block is better than sitting on the couch or in front of the computer”. I just might be brave enough to wear a bathing suit on the trip!

  70. #93

    Sandy, i remember how proud i felt when i ran for 30 minutes the first time. It was totally that OH MY GOD! I can do ANYTHING feeling. Congrats on your 25K. I hope to do a half marathon next year. My confidence is a bit shaky though. My longest run is 6.73 miles to date. Ill have to push that up slowly!

  71. #94

    youre not bad because you dont like exercise. i used to think it sucked, personally. And Just Dance looks like a blast. And guess what? That IS exercise! Totally. You dont have to run to be working it. I remember my good friend Donna Downey, when she decided to get moving, she bought a punching bag and hung it in her garage because she LOVED to hit things. That was totally fun and got her started on her journey.

    Good for you. Dance your little tushka off now!

  72. #95

    Sabrina, if youre tired all the time, you may want to get a physical and get your blood work done! Seriously. Unless youre sleep deprived, it might be worth a look at other things. I will say i have more energy this year than at any time i can recall, from exercising and eating better. I actually forget that i used to crave naps and be super tired and crabby in the afternoons. : )

  73. #96

    I have a saying it’s “just do it” okay I didn’t invent it but really “just do it” I could sit here all day and find excuses not to run, eat right or shower….. and time in my opinion is just another excuse. 90% of the success we achieve in this life is over coming the mental walls, stop thinking and start doing! IT FEELS GREAT!

  74. #97

    I have the time, just not the movitivation right now.

    We ALL have the time. If you have time to check Facebook, watch tv, talk on the phone with a friend while complaining that you don’t have time to excerise then you DO have time to excerise.
    I know a lady who works full time out of the house, is taking her masters, has 3 kids who are in a bunch of activities, lives on a farm etc etc AND she excerises.

  75. #98

    Fitness??? What the ________ is that? That is where I am. I have been following your journey, getting inspiration from you and some of the people that you have helped motivate since January. I have the time (I get up at 5:30 am to start getting my kids off to school-make lunches, make sure they brush their teeth, get to the bus ontime or drive them to Jazz Band at 6:15) but what do I do? I sit on my fat butt and read your blog, another 50 blogs, and read and post to FB! Motivation…. well lets see: I’m “obese”, take medication for high blood pressure (2 different ones), have high cholesterol that I take medication for as well, have meds for depression (which I don’t think they are working), and am at risk for diabetes, and all the other horrible things associated with obesity. Do you think that is motivation enough? Nope, I just can’t seem to get off my butt or off the computer! I have a treadmill that I traded a vacuum for from my sister. I have used it less than 10 times. I just don’t know what I am waiting for? A heart attack, a stroke–by then it could be too late. I know I need to do this for my family, but then again, I really need to do this for myself and just can’t seem to. So there it is. I’ve put it out there for you and your blog followers to see. Thanks for letting me vent Cathy! YOU are a rock star!

  76. #99
    Tanya K.

    I make the time. In the past, when the kids head off to bed I would usually head to my scrap desk. Now, I hit the treadmill first, and if I’m feeling up for it I will scrap after. I still scrap here and there during the day…but I’ve made my daily workout my number one priority. Yes, there are the odd days where I truly don’t have the time, but they are few and far between. And there are days when the motivation is lacking, but I’ve made this comittment to being more active and after 15 months of almost daily exercise it’s just become part of my routine.

  77. #100

    I’m almost 300 lbs. I was laid off a few months ago and in those few months, I went from motivated and working on it to ZERO motivation and lots of time. I know I need to lose weight to be healthy but it seems hopeless. I have time, but it’s hard and painful and it feels like I’ll never get anywhere. My eating habits are greatly improved with having more time to plan and cook. I eat far less, but I can’t seem to get moving.

  78. #101
    Beth H

    Right now I have the time, but motivation is lacking. I am trying to start with baby steps instead of a whole bunch of “shoulds” that will just make me feel guilty and quit. So, first things was to try a yoga class and then make a commitment to doing yoga once a week — yes, I can do it more if I want — but the non-negotiable part is once a week — doable. I also have a young energetic dog who is too crazy if he doesn’t get a 20 minute walk every day — so I am committed to that whenever possible. Between the dark coming so early and my daughter’s ballet schedule it doesn’t always happen. I work part-time, but it’s between 9-3. It is definitely easier to find the time now that my daughter is old enough to stay home alone for a half hour while I go for a walk! In the back of my mind I think I should do more — but I don’t want to “frighten myself off”. Some is better than nothing. FWIW — Yoga rocks –clears the mind and tons the body! Thanks for inspiring me!

  79. #102
    Julia Spencer

    Great Post. πŸ˜‰ I find that fitness is a non-negotiable to me anymore. I need to move more and eat healthier. I don’t want to sit all day. I want to be strong. I want to be sexy. And with all those wants comes needs. I need to push myself to move. I need to create time to accomplish my wants. It take work. Sexy is not going to fall out of the sky and take away my ass.

  80. #103
    Marion W

    I work out with a trainer twice a week and since we got our new dog a few months ago (our old one, who died at the beginning of the year, was too old and infirm to go out walking), I walk the dog every day for about 30 minutes. Although we have a treadmill, I hate using it, but being out and about with the dog is great exercise, works off his excess energy, and guess what, I’ve taken off a few pounds and am back to my normal pants size. Being unemployed, it gets me out of the house, but when I worked, I typically squeezed in lunch time at the gym a few days per week. That being said, I’ve always been jealous of runners – they seem to love it, but I will never be a runner because of a couple of minor injuries which would become major if subject to the stresses of running. So there – I said it – I’m jealous! I guess we all have to seek fitness at our own level.

  81. #104

    I find the time if I don’t have it, because I am not a pleasant woman to live with if I am not moving more and eating less!

    Keep up your new fit lifestyle! We owe that to ourselves. πŸ™‚

  82. #105

    I think I’m mostly in that, β€œFitness? That looks so good…on other people.” Not that I don’t want to be healthier and smaller. It’s just not something I can actually visualize, for me. Sort of like being wealthy or having some sort of successful career. It looks good on everyone else, but I just can’t see it for me.

  83. #106

    I do *something*, no exceptions. It’s just part of my routine. Two years ago, I did a “100 runs in 100 days” challenge, and learned that I can ALWAYS find 30 minutes in my day to move. It’s not always easy, but I feel so much better when I do.

    For me, my key is getting in my workouts in the morning – I’m not tired, nothing has popped up suddenly in life, or kept me late after work.

  84. #107

    I am in the “I have the motivation but not the time” category. I work full-time outside of the home. I have 2 teenaged daughters who need driving to volleyball practice at 6:30am! I have a husband who works shift-work, so if he is home, he will help with the preparation of supper, but if he is working, I am alone in the cooking department. My girls will help, but who wants to cook when you’re coming in the door at 5:30pm and already starving? Once supper is over, usually 6:30pm, it takes time for the supper to digest, so I cannot run down to my workout DVD right after supper. By then it is time to help my girls with their homework and do a little toilet cleaning and a load of laundry. I do squeeze in a little blogging around 9pm…and then who wants to get revved up in a workout at 10pm, only to struggle to fall asleep while your heart is still beating fast, all the while knowing it will start all over again tomorrow morning at 5:30am? That’s me in a nutshell.

  85. #108

    I did this, too…and found when I changed it, my husband was waaaay more supportive than I thought he would be…funny the restrictions we place on ourselves… πŸ™‚

  86. #109

    You know what, we are all in the same boat – BUSY! But your post just gave me an Oprah “a-ha’ moment. Exercise whether it be a walk/run, going to the gym, using a couple of tins of tomatoes as weights and doing a Cher workout dvd.. – should be a part of our day just as sleeping and eating is. 5mins or 50mins we owe it to ourselves and our bodies (& our sanity) to do some sort of movement every day!

  87. #110
    Marilyn Sue

    I admire you. I have time and I have money. What I don’t have is motivation. I know once I get started, it will be like a tidal wide, and you just ride along. As I have gotten older, it gets harder. I turn 50 next summer, maybe that and another new grandchild coming will help start the motivation…..

  88. #111
    Kirsten L

    My husband is my motivation. The first of this year, he decided he was tired of being overweight and we began getting up every morning (6 days/week) and exercising in our bonus room. We are on our 4th round of P90x. He has lost over 50 lbs and I have lost 10. I have always been active, even taught aerobics during one season of my life, but I am in the best shape of my life. My body changed and I lost in places I didn’t think I could. I have 4 kids and I wore a 2 piece at the beach this summer for the first time in my life. We changed our eating as well and feel soooo much better. My husband looks awesome and we are thankful for our new lifestyle and the positive things it has done in our lives.

  89. #113

    Leslie, hang in there, mama! I know 8 p.m. aint idea. Believe me. Id have to really change some things to make a treadmill date at night, but you are rocking it all the same! keep it up!

  90. #114

    Lifetime are great gyms! But the ones in my hometown dont have pools. I cant drive 30 minutes to the ones that do! But i LOVE the clubs. So nice.

  91. #117

    Two words: Bundle up! Im totally going to plow through as many outdoor runs as possible. Im gearing up (I know, it costs money to buy warmer run gear) so that I can keep it outdoors as often as possible. : )

  92. #122

    Michelle, its a HUGE start. Seriously. Finding the motivation, especially when youre facing some of the physical curve balls life will throw at us, is really important. Keep it up. Its actually okay to be shocked a little in the start. God knows thats what kept me motivated!

  93. #123

    i was the queen of, I dont want to do it. I dont have the time.

    Also, the queen of I hate exercise!

    How things can change!

  94. #128

    Even though sometimes, I look at Nike and think, okay, you just want my money… the idea of just do it is brilliant. No real room for excuses on that one!

  95. #129

    Go Cindy! The thing that people need to always remember, walking and running cost as much as a good pair of shoes and some gear to keep you warm. Keep up your good work!

  96. #130

    Rose, youre inspiring woman! The thing is, there are big emotional and mental changes that come with fitness. Moms find they are calmer than they used to be, more patient. And, of course, healthier in the process. These comments have been great today. A great read for anyone looking for ideas on how to get moving and stay there!

  97. #131

    Without a doubt I make the time. I am a much better mom, teacher and wife when I do. For me with 3 kids under 10 and a full time job, making the time means I wake up about 4:45 3 days a week and 5:45 on 3 other days. It is not my first choice but it is the easiest to fit in then. To keep myself motivated I sign up for races (triathlon and running) and meet friends 3 to 4 days a week for a run, which keeps things fun! Also, the fact that I look better and feel better at 39 than I did at 29 provides some serious motivation!

  98. #132

    I just posted to ann, something I could also say here (and God knows Im no fitness expert.)

    But it is SERIOUSLY baby steps. No one expects anyone to lace up shoes and run a mile. But finding a way to get out for a 30 minute walk? Do-able. If its cold where you live, bundle up. This is something only you can do for you. You can read about people doing it, but you have to figure out a way to do it in a way that works for you. Its not hopeless. Nothing is hopeless. Being alive is a freaking amazing thing. I really really believe this. And even eating far less? that is awesome. THAT is something that is really, really hard for a lot of people.

    Heres to you, and your health. It is do-able. It is.

  99. #133

    Ann, the thing is, you cant do it for anyone but you. Thats a fact. Any other motivation wouldnt really have staying power. I know when youre faced with a lot of health issues, one might think that would do the trick, but oftentimes, it doesnt. I know a bit about depression as well, living with my hubby who has dealt with it his entire adult life.

    Heres what I think, and you can take this with a grain of salt, but… start going for walks on your treadmill. Dont think about running, or sweating like crazy. Just get on it and walk. Put on the tv, or listen to some tunes, and say, I can do this 4 days a week. Non-negotiable. Period. Try it for 4 weeks. And try to walk for 30 minutes each time. At the end of 4 weeks, if youre miserable with it… try another week or two.

    I wish you to have increased health! : ) You CAN do this. And Im not talking about being some teeny sized woman with a flat stomach. But someone who moves more and feels better.

  100. #134

    I never pictured myself doing it either. Let alone going to a gym, which I now do. But let me tell you, Im finding that I like the image of it more and more. When I was much heavier and out there running, I used to think i was a little embarrassed… that i didnt even look like i belonged out there. But, I kept telling myself: what? Youre going to let people in cars judge you? Theyre not out there with you! Run on!

    So that image has stayed with me. I like that Im out there, doing it.

  101. #135

    That IS a busy day. I think you should get your girls to clean the toilet and toss in the laundry. And let mama go for a walk! : ) Good luck. I know it is NOT easy with that much going on!

  102. #138

    Sounds like you’re becoming a Y-rat (that’s said affectionately πŸ™‚ vs being a Y brat!). Go you!
    Even for us crazy competitive nuts, if it’s not done in the morning first thing (the hard workout) – it ain’t happening. Trying to get ready for my ‘big’ race next summer so I’m up to 2 workouts/day-ugh – thank goodness, my husband ‘coaches’ me thru some of them. (Can you tell I’m retired now?)
    But even when I was working full-time plus 3 kids, I was a miserable human being to be around if you didn’t let me get my workout in. At work, instead of the ‘walk with me and talk’, it was the ‘run with me and talk’. I had some fit staff πŸ™‚ (Thankfully I was the ‘boss’.)

  103. #139
    Erin Kohlenberg

    Hi Cathy!
    I have a hard time fitting in exercise. I keep trying different things.. but I still have a tough time getting to the gym. or doing anything. I have to be very conscious about it and absolutely plan for a work out.

  104. #140

    I second what Danni said. I hate to workout. That being said, when I workout, I feel better, look better and have way more energy. Do I have the time every single day? Nope. But I make it work as often as I can (4-5 times per week). And ya know what? I feel so much better about myself!

  105. #141

    Good question! I was asked the same thing by the sports editor of a local paper where he was featuring local runners running in a half marathon event. I have five children, one living with special medical and developmental needs, I watch my grandbaby while her momma works during the day and I work 7pm to 7 am in a busy NICU three days a week. So I guess it is a fair question to ask how do I find the time, how do I do it? The thing is over the last two years I have found I NEED to get out and run or spend 30 minutes or so lifting weights or doing yoga poses. I absolutely need it and so just like my daily “beauty” routine, I make the time. I’ve learned to accept that it is often in odd hours whenever I get the chance but such is the life of a juggling woman. I also sign up for local races and runs in advance and post the events on my calendar. I have to keep up with my training, exercise because I paid $ for that race next month. It took a little time but it is now a habit, a habit I crave and need but definitely a GOOD habit.

  106. #142
    Kim F

    I’m wondering how to do it. I’m up at 4:45 a.m. to get ready for work (and get son ready for school). Out of house no later than 6:30 a.m. for long commute to work; lunch break is 30 minutes, but time to catch up on bills, emails, etc. Home between 5:30 and 6 p.m. to do dishes from night before, get dinner ready, parent, homework, laundry, then to bed between 9-10 p.m. Gym is not an option. Not sure what to do… would love to have a treadmill to walk on at home, but very small house and nowhere to put it. I hope that someday I’ll figure this out…

  107. #143

    Great post! You don’t wait until you are motivated to start exercising. You start doing the behavior because you choose the results – a healthier heart, a thinner waist, or whatever. Motivation comes after you start, not before. A few years ago I had a goal to exercise every single day for ten minutes. Some nights, I would have to jump rope for 10″ in front of the 10 o’clock news. I find now that if I will just step out the door with my exercise clothes on, I will run & run & run.

    Eating lots more fruits & vegetables & a lot less processed food & soda has turned my life around. I have more energy & feel so much better that I don’t want to go back to the way I was.

  108. #144
    minnesota:madre | Sarah Jane

    I go running or to yoga at 5:30 or 6 three weekday mornings a week. I try to squeeze in one or two workouts each weekend. And I’m excited to ski some more which usually happens in the evening on lit trails or the weekend days.
    I’ve been wanting to start swimming, but never really have had a lesson since I was, well, ten. Did you take a lesson again or just jump in?

  109. #145
    Alana in Canada

    Let’s just say I’ve been thinking about moving more. I went to my first aquafit class on Monday. It was a blast.

    Just curious: are you doing some sort of December Daily this year? I love Ali’s project–but it just looks too complicated for me. But–if you do it, I’ll know what to do, lol!

  110. #146
    debi boring

    Well crap! No wonder! It’s Excersize MORE….. eat LESS! I had it backwards!

    I have found for me, if I can find something that’s FUN, I’ll do it. I’m not one of those that can talk myself into going to the gym when I HATE to go to the gym, and I’m certainly not a runny. I don’t like situps, pushups, jumping jacks or anything else that takes exertion haha…. I’m kinda lazy like that, and other than going to Curves, I haven’t found much in the way of excersize that I actually do enjoy….. until…. I discovered ZUMBA! I love to dance, so I’ve decided that dancing is the way I will get my excersize. I only go twince a week, so that’s still not ’nuff, but I’m also doing a 15 min. power walk up and down our hill that gets me huffin and puffin. As long as I’m huffin and puffin, I figure it must be working hee!

    I do still have my Wii and use to do the Wii Fit everyday, and then switched to the Wii My Fitness Coach, but somehow got out of the habit. Need to start that up again too.

    I just bought a Vitamix, hoping to eat healthier. I’m now making hot cream of broccoli/cheese soup in the Vitamix (6 min) every day for lunch instead of snacking on left over pizza or cheese and crackers. It’s a start anyway… We’ll see….

  111. #147
    Shanon Gibson

    I could make the time but lack the motiviation most days. I am a SAHM with a 3 and 2 year old daughter and married to a busy military man and find that by the end of the day I am exhausted. We have an elliptical machine downstairs…I just need to get motivated to use it.

  112. #148

    I have to force the time into my schedule. I’m a very busy professor and I have life outside of that job with children and husband. It’s on my schedule on my door, do not bother me, I’m working out and I’m lucky enough to have access to the gym where the students work out. But, since I started running in January, I find myself running outside more frequently. Sure, there are weeks when every single one of my workout times is filled with some meeting that can’t be put off. When that happens, I try to shift my schedule in other ways and run that night or make time the next day. There are plenty of other professors who don’t make this time. It’s easy to push it off my schedule but I don’t want to be like that. My schedule only changed when I made health and fitness a priority.

  113. #149

    I’m busy, but I try to make the time. Some days I succeed and others I don’t. To me a successful week is if I manage to workout twice during the week and once on the weekend. Anything else is gravy.

  114. #150

    I think we make choices all the time.
    People ask me how do I find the time to scrapbook or do art and my answer is I make time for the things I want to do. We all do.
    I don’t make time to watch tv.
    Unfortunately, I am not making time to exercise, yet, and just wish the motivation was a bit higher.
    Thank you for your inspiration – maybe a teensy bit of motivation will spark from it.

  115. #151

    I too have MADE time only the last 9 months three mornings a week to work out.

    But I just recently have felt like I’m not getting all my “stuff” done. I’m considering dropping a morning of exercise to have a couple more hours to “get stuff done”.

    Whaddya think? Bad move? Will I fall off the exercise wagon if I drop a day? Or, is gaining that hour or so really worth it??? (answering your question with a question…)

  116. #152

    I have the motivation, but have to make the time. With full time work, two kids, and several volunteer responsibilities it’s too easy to let time get away from me. What works for me is to sign up for an event that requires some training–a run, a sprint triathlon, a charity bike ride. It doesn’t really matter what the event is; I’m a deadline driven person, so if I sign up for something I’m going to make myself be ready for it, come hell or high water. Then I force myself to find the time–I run on my lunch breaks, bike to work or take long rides on the weekend, swim right after work or before (or take a long lunch break to swim–I’m fortunate to work at a college, so I use the college gym facilities). I’ll also improvise–there’s nothing wrong with running up and down the stairs and around and around the outside of the house several times to get in some exercise when I haven’t been able to get to the gym for a few days and can’t abandon the kids at home alone while I go for a run or a ride.

    I find myself slacking when there isn’t an event coming up, so I just keep signing up for things. That said, I also don’t beat myself up if I go a couple of weeks with no exercise–sometimes it just happens when I’m super-busy at work and can’t take a lunch break. As long as I don’t let it continue when the super-busy time is over, I’m fine.

  117. #154

    Bummer! I’m with you though… pools are a deal breaker for me in terms of gyms. I don’t use them all the time, but I love having that option to mix up the workout.

  118. #155

    One other thing to add to my earlier comments… the gym for me is my “third place”. You know, that theory where you have home, work/school and then ______… your “third place”. Starbucks for a while tried to market themselves as the “fourth place”… whatev. It’s sort of another venue to unwind, to come back to yourself, to feel relaxed and “at home”. I totally feel that way about my gym and would really miss it if I ended my membership. Working out definitely enriches your life in way more ways than simply slimming your midsection. πŸ˜‰

  119. #156
    Leslie B

    Well, I have no excuse for not doing anything – and I mean anything for several years. Now with my daughter hitting 13 & dealing with all that age entails (hormones, starting her period, etc) she’s starting to pack on the pounds. Weirdly enough PE isn’t a required class here in Phoenix. She’s actively involved in theatre but is no longer in sports…which means she’s getting little to no exercise. Well, using that as my motivation to get up and get going, we’ve started taking zumba classes together. You’ve also got me interested in running so my daughter and I have decided to start doing that together as well. I did a lot of reading about the ‘couch to 5K’ program & just downloaded the app to my itouch. It’s a start.

  120. #157

    Such a great post. I’ve always thought that if you want to do something, you will find the time to do it. That thought comes from the time when I worked 40%, studied full time and exercised 15 hours or more a week. What I didn’t do, was watch TV, go to a lot of parties and so on. When people ask me how I find time to exercise with two kids, part time job and studies now, the answer is the same. No TV, no Facebook. And, like Laura, very little housework. πŸ˜‰

  121. #158

    oh cathy! when you started your journey towards healthy eating and exercising…you motivated me! really you did! i never in a million years thought i would be drinking “green juice” (as my kids call it), but i do, and i love it! since feb. of this year…i have lost 30lbs. and i feel wonderful! i always hear the comment “i can’t make time”. it irritates me, but, i just keep going. i make time for family, work, house, etc….so, i AM going to make time for myself. thank you for all of your inspiration! you have really touched my life!

  122. #160

    I LOVE TV. No, really. LOVE it. Usually I watch it from a snuggly couch. Now that I am trying to lose weight, I DVR my fave shows and I’m only allowed to watch them while I workout. So basically, I’m not making time for fitness – just reorganizing how I use the time I already had.

  123. #161

    Thank you for this post. I’ve been trying to get back into shape lately. I’ve been inspired by your journey. I went from going to the gym 6 days a week and training for half marathons year after year to doing nothing all day but work, eat, and sleep. Lately I try to get up and run before work in the morning, but someone had a tragedy the night before that kept me yapping on the phone until too late. Or some excuse like that. I think we, as women, naturally always put everything and everyone else first. But, after a while, even that is an excuse, isn’t it? Just like “I don’t have the time”. I’ve realized I’ve answered every call and run to every friend so that I can excuse myself from not taking the time to work on myself. So that ends. Today. Totally missed my morning workout this morning. But now I’m going home and putting in my run after work. Thanks. πŸ™‚

  124. #162

    I roll my ass out of bed every day (weekends included) between 4:30-5:00 AM to run, cycle or go to boot camp. Mind you, I do NOT enjoy rising at o’dark early every morning, but that feeling I get post workout is like none other. A feeling I have not found in doing anything other than a challenging workout. And when 8am rolls around and I’m parked behind my desk, I’m feeling pretty damn good about myself and what I’ve already accomplished!

  125. #163

    I am all about the class option for motivation. Same times every week and a good teacher who keeps things fun and makes you not want to miss a week. Having other people in the room makes me step up my game compared to any sort of exercise on my own. And paying for a few drop-in classes a week ended up WAY cheaper than a gym membership for me. Gotta love that.

    When I was working in a ‘regular’ job, I tried to make it to a class to have an escape from my desk. When I started working on my own, I found it *so* helpful to have something that was a) not work and b) at a certain time. I need things to make me get things done at a reasonable time, and it’s more fun for that to be dance class rather than a boss. Way more fun.

    Gotta be said though Cathy: your 2010 journey has been so cool to follow – and motivating. πŸ™‚

  126. #165

    Hey Erin! Nice to see a hometown girl on the comments! : ) It IS scheduling it that makes all the difference for me as well.

  127. #166

    Kim, i dont envy your time constraints! That IS a busy day. Maybe you could look to weekends as a time to try and fit it in? That might give you a place to start. : )

  128. #167

    Im sorry, Debi, that cracked me up! : ) Zumba is the bomb. And it is a workout too! : ) I have the Wii Fit too. Havent done it in a while. Might have to bust that out again!

  129. #168

    Nothing like signing up for a race to help motivate! : ) Good for you. And also good for you for not beating yourself up when you have time without exercise. I havent figured that one out yet.

  130. #170

    I was a competitive swimmer when I was younger, and then again in high school. Im not fast, but swimming is something Ive been able to do my whole life, thanks to a mom who pushed me into lessons until I got good. : )

  131. #172

    No December Daily for me. I love Alis project though. I keep saying Im going to do it one of these years, but… life gets in the way!

  132. #173

    Shanon, you HAVE a full plate. Thats for sure. But keep in mind, that elliptical could be a really good thing to hop on every now and then. Start small. : )

  133. #174

    Smart, smart! I love that. I dont have a DVD player hooked up to the tv in my basement, but this is motivating to get one! Guilt free tv!

  134. #177

    Isnt that a great feeling? When youre day is just starting and the workout is done? Im TOTALLY a morning exerciser. However, I have been doing some more afternoon stuff too (swimming mostly) and even at night (also swimming with the kids.)

  135. #179

    I say keep your exercise, and cut out something else. Seriously. Your body needs you to love it and give it the good stuff. Exercise is the good stuff. Keep it. Keep it. : )

  136. #181

    You know whats weird? Ive never had that put everyone else first mentality. Maybe its because Im a bit of a self-absorbed person, but I also believe its because I know that no one is going to take care of my physical needs. It has to be me. Then Im a better me for everyone else. : )

    Keep it up! : )

  137. #182
    Di Hickman

    Hi Colleen, In 2001 we moved from England to USA so I hear ya on the move. I left a busy job to come here due to my husbands career and went from working out reguarly (most of the day as it was my job) to working out rarely. This from a fitness instructor and personal trainer! Don’t use the move as an excuse. I know moving here we also had the increase in portion sizes but it’s a real culture shock.

    As someone who’s been there, trust me, make that walk to the gym! You’ll feel better, plus it’ll get you out making friends! Moving countries is no small feat, but working out will make it easier cos you have less time to think about other things!

  138. #183
    Di Hickman

    Why not go walking? costs nothing and your 2 yr old can go too! Take a stroller incase they get tired and that would be an extra workout for you walking and pushing the stroller. Bonus is the fresh air will tire out the toddler quicker too πŸ˜‰

    Exercise doesn’t have to be classes, or gyms it’s about what Cathy said MOVING more. Activities like a family walk after breakfast, walking the kids to school instead of taking the car. walking to the store/park/errands etc. For resistance work push ups, squats and and sit ups etc require NO equipment, easy to do at home.

    Check out the websites of fitness magazines for sample workouts, or just buy a magazine! Rent a workout DVD from the library?

    There are MANY options for working out at home with zero cost involved!

  139. #184
    Di Hickman

    Haven’t read all the comments but from the few I read I just want to say that exercise doesn’t have to be at the gym or a class etc. Remember Cathy said MOVE more, not go to the gym more. It’s about activity! Walk more, play ball with the kids in the yard, workout at home, make time to be ACTIVE in the day!

    It also doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. I know with the current economy things are tough for most people. Walking costs NOTHING. Put your shoes on and step out the front door, put one foot in front of the other and GO! Want it harder? Run! Want resistance? Push a stroller! Put on a backpack and fill it with canned food. GO for a hike. Join the library – most have workout DVDs for loan, or ask friends to borrow theirs!

    Biggest thing – think about the time you spend watching TV, or on facebook! I post health & fitness stuff on twitter and I have a twitter post that says:
    “If you have time to sit on facebook playing Farmville, MafiaWars etc you have time to #exercise! No excuses! Get your butts in gear!”
    Be honest, how much time do you spend on those games? Checking email? Playing on your smartphone? watching tv? We ALL have the same 24 hours in the day, how we CHOOSE to spend them is up to us!

  140. #185

    Just so you know, Rose, the face that you got out of bed earlier than 5am is in-and-of-itself TOTALLY amazing and inspiring to me! Getting up early doesn’t sound hard until the alarm is going off and it’s dark and the covers are pulled up and it’s so cozy! πŸ™‚ I recognize what a difference it would make in my life to be an early riser, but I’ve yet to be able to pull my body UP any earlier than I have to. So congrats to you!

  141. #186
    Susan Bowers

    I have the time. I don’t have to pay for a gym (I’m retired military so one is available free at no charge – well, except for my 20 years of service). But it is a 20 minute drive. That plus, the twenty minute drive home and a shower after a swim (I swim for an hour) means I need 2 1/2 – 3 hours to get in a 1 hour swim. This doesn’t count the times I have to wait for a lane to open up. Sooo, I’ve slid swimming aside and I sit. And I hate it.

  142. #187

    I have to realize like a lot of the ladies that commented. You have to make the time. I am like you now I have to have my 3-4 runs per week and I will find a way to do it. If I have to run at 6am then I run at six. If I have to run at noon when my daughter goes to school I do. Before this past year I never took time for myself, but now that I have I find that I am a better person. Not as great as I’d like to be, but better. I also make time to scrap if I want to too. Thanks for being an inspiration, all of your running/ better me in 2010 posts have been a great motivator. I even ran my first 5k last Saturday.

  143. #188

    Up until about 2 weeks ago, I was making the time. I absolutely must get back to it. I have allowed additional work issues to stop me and I’ve allowed my hips to have a nice break from the daily walk/jog. Maybe I was doing too much and was a sign I should cut back. But, I really love how much better I feel when I do make the time for the exercise.

    Oh, and it has been really cool to watch your journey. I love your sense of humor, admire your courage to share your stats with us, and am imspired by your progress. You look FABULOUS!

  144. #189
    Jen D

    Definitely trying to find the motivation. Having two little ones and a full time job makes it hard to find the time, but I could certainly spend less time doing things like reading blogs or Facebook πŸ™‚ 10 months post-baby and still having to lose baby weight is starting to get a bit depressing πŸ™‚ Thanks for keeping it real as always!

  145. #190
    Bernice J

    I’m a firm believer in the adage that we can always make time to do the things that have priority in our life. I don’t exercise but that is honestly because I don’t make it high on my priority list; it’s, rather, a lack of motivation. We all choose what we do with the time we have…and what we do with it shows what we place a value on.

  146. #194

    Thanks Di and Cathy. Your kind words will get me to the gym today. BTW Cathy, love our ‘Seattle connection’ – every time you post something about it or the NW, I’m like, “I know that! I’ve been there! I’ve gotten stuck in traffic on that exit!” Makes me happy. πŸ™‚

  147. #195

    I work from home as well, have been for 10 years now, as a freelance translator. It’s like doing a full-time job in 10 million bits of time spread throughout the day. But I love it. I am very disciplined with my work and I manage to rear two children, do the school run, do my job, cook every day or nearly every day, have time for my hobbies (at night). The only thing lacking was doing something about my fitness. Last year I started going to the gym but last winter (Australian winter, not long ago) I lost motivation because I was home bound with the kids being sick all the time.

    Two months ago, I got the energy and motivation back. I’m not a runner like you, never will be because I have terrible feet (bunions from hell) but I do weight training, cycling on a stationary bike (no good bike riding paths around here unfortunately) and sometimes swimming. I also realised I have to ‘make’ time, even if that means getting up very early so I can go to the gym at 6am when it opens, and be back by 7am when my husband leaves for work. I am still struggling some days, but so far I manage to go 3 times a week and it feels great. I also gave up alchohol a few weeks ago, and I have lost a few kilos from that alone. Now I’m really starting to feel ‘healthy’. Anyway, that’s my story πŸ™‚

  148. #199

    For years & years, I scoffed at exercise – truly not for me! I was lucky, I never was major overweight, but have always had issues with weight – mental issues… Then turning 50 I began to experience hot flashes. I remembered a time when I did exercise daily thinking it’d help boost my morale while my husband was away for 5 weeks at a job across the seas. I was hoping it’d up my endorphins and I’d be less sad with him gone. I believe it did help a lot, so when I began to have mild hot flashes a year ago, I thought the extreme menopause mood swings might be next so I finally began to exercise regularly.

    My issue with exercise was exactly what so many people think – where do I find the time? (and motivation!!) Well, one day I discovered I could enlarge the type & images on my computer by hitting the command + keys (on a Mac) and decided to attempt dancing, jumping, walking, jogging in place while reading my daily email & favorite blogs & even facebook while holding the mouse & using my thigh as a “mouse pad”. Now almost a year later, I’m still doing that – daily if possible! I throw in a few stairs for a stronger workout (2 story house), use weights on & off, and just make sure I’m moving while reading my daily internet fix. It’s to the point if I’m traveling for a few days, laptop in tow, I’ll check email for any urgent messages, but save the non-urgent messages for when I can exercise to them! I too miss my workout now when I’m unable to squeeze that time into a day – something I thought would never, ever happen.

    I believe exercising has helped me sleep better, kept me more even keeled mood-wise, and helped me drop that extra weight I’d gained through time, after 2 kids, & the slowing of my metabolism. I feel way stronger now than I did 10 years ago – even managing a backpacking adventure this summer with my 21 year old daughter & husband.

    Now, excuse me, I need to get off this chair & start moving!!

  149. #200

    RE: Running 3 to 4 days a week, non-negotiable.

    I needed that kick in the butt remidnder today. Thank you, you are RIGHT on.

  150. #201

    Love hearing this Jana. Speaking of hot flashes, I swear I had my first major one in Target the other day and it freaked me out! Im not going to like this Change. : )

  151. #202
    Jody Myers

    I have the time and the motivation. I run or do interval training every morning. My problem is the food!! I’m a stay at home and my kids are all in school now. I find myself grazing all day…I hate that!

  152. #203

    I have to say, when I left the military 5 years ago I vowed never to run again! I hated it. I was never fast enough, so when I got out I stopped. Married the man of my dreams, 2 beautiful children and picked up 30lbs along the way. My hubby after ten years together still has a six pack, SO NOT FAIR! But, we r separated again, and looking into a year alone to raise to small children, I welcomed running. My kids r young, we r far from home, so no day care, school, or family to give me time off. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days, no brakes… except…. every other day, kids go in the stroller, headphones go in, and I run… no butt/nose/goo wiping, no whinnying, no worries… an empty head and pounding feet…. and no one has yet to say I am not going fast enough, but I have got a “GO Mommy, GO!” And my size 8’s r getting roomy πŸ™‚

  153. #204

    I fall into the excuses category – not motivated, not enough time, etc. I also have always had a chip on my shoulder about ‘hating running’. I played a lot of team sports as a teenager, and was never super skinny, but was reasonably fit. I look back at my graduation photo shape (which I thought at the time was borderline chubby) and would give anything for it now.

    My old school friends have got back into running. I swore it would be the last thing I’d do. But, I haven’t found an alternative. Worst thing was last night I stood up on the Wii Fit, 600 days since I last stood on it, and have gained 30 pounds! Yesterday was a bad day. However, it was day 4 of my ‘regular’ workouts, so it could have been worse. I could have stood on the Wii having not worked out the previous 3 days.

    So, I just have to keep it up. Move. Every. Day.
    At the moment I’m just walking more at work (I work full time and so am gone from home 6.30 to 6.30), and using the Wii – Active and Fit every night for half an hour or more. It’s keeping track. It’s holding me accountable. I know I need to be accountable to myself. Hopefully I’ll get there. They say you need to do something consecutively for 28 days to make it a habit. That’s my aim for the moment. Establish a habit.

    On the up side, I have lost this weight twice before…after my two kids. So it can be done. It’s not easy, or fun, but it might be easier or more funn-er, if it was habitual, rather than a chore. Cathy, you help to cheer me up and keep me positive! Thanks πŸ™‚

  154. #207
    Stacey aka sleepyhead

    Hey Kendra, I’m right there with you. I always fall asleep with the best of intentions. And yet here I am at 10:15am fully dressed and showered so I couldn’t possibly go the gym now and get all sweaty because then I’d need another shower and that’s a waste of water and my foot hurts and I just don’t feel like it today and it’s Friday, and …. need I go on. One of these days I’ll get it together. Right now I’m just trying to accept my imperfection and hopefully something will wake me out of this funk. Good luck to you and if you find some motivation please send it to me in a cookie box so I’ll be sure to open it! πŸ™‚

  155. #208

    I come back from work at 7PM every day, I have 2 children under 5 yo, not easy to find the ENERGY to do something else ( not only the time). But I take a zumba class every friday evening. Like Jill, it’s my time !

  156. #210
    Amber B

    I am totally NOT a morning person – I have tried to get up early to work out at 6AM over and over and over again but find that even on the days I actually make it to my treadmill, I dont run as hard… so instead I try to make it a point to work out during my lunch break at work. My little guy is @ daycare so it’s a great 45 min all to myself. To keep me going, I hit up episodes of Private Practice on you-tube and before I know it time’s up (and better yet, no commericals).

  157. #211
    Lori H

    I am right there with Leslie- I started taking my life into my own hands in August – walking, jogging etc almost every day. Once the kids started school I have totally lost all hope that I will have the time to do anything. We are busy running from acitivty to activity with no time for me. I work a full time plus job. I want to exercise but find excuses all the time- its too dark, too cold, now in MN too snowy. I don’t have anyone in the area to keep my motiviation where it should be. I know I need to do this but just can’t find the motivation and time to do this. I do not have the resources to go to a gym. HELP

  158. #212
    Breezi@Not your Average Fairytale

    While I do not have the financial means to have a gym membership- I don’t have time to exercise either. Between my children- I’m booked. I have an 8 year old daughter (up at the butt crack of dawn- and down later than I’d wish), a 4 year old daughter (who is up at all hours of the nights because “it’s too scary”), and 6 month old teething twin boys who have discovered the joys of rolling everywhere and eating the cat.(I’m pretty sure they are descendants of Alf) The babies have decided never to nap at the same time. Ever.

    I’ve also got a husband working a full time job, and trying to start his own company… which is another, um, three full time jobs worth of time. He’s not around much to help. Darn. When this business takes off, he owes me a date and a trip to the spa. Seriously.

    I’ve been told that someday I’ll miss this.
    I sometimes wish that today was that day.

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