By Myprotein Writer | Charlene Harvey
Fitness Model and Fit Mum
Firstly, where do you find that motivation? For myself, it’s setting a firm goal or commitment.
Why not try signing up for something that suits your exercise goals? This might be a fun run, a marathon, or like me, a fitness competition. Announce it to all your friends and family so everyone knows what you’re aiming for. The better support network you have around you the easier it will be to keep going. Keep people updated on your progress and thrive on their positive comments and support.
So, goal set – now to find the time.
When you’re a parent with a family and a hectic work life, sometimes finding the time to do the simplest of things is challenging, let alone fit in a new fitness and diet regime. But the truth is simple. If you truly want to achieve something you find time, make time, sometimes even invent time.
#1 Early start
The best advice I can give is get up early. Not everyone will share my enthusiasm for this. Give it a little time – even getting up 5-10 minutes earlier to start off with can boost your energy for the day!
…You may worry that this may leave you tired for the rest of the day. I would do too but I actually find the fitter you are and the cleaner your diet, the less sleep you need – or alternatively, how much easier you will find your motivation in the morning.
✓ Try sacrificing an hour’s worth of watching TV and go to bed that little bit earlier. It’s amazing how much you can get done while everyone else is sound asleep!
By 8:30am I’ve done my own food prep, sorted food for that evening for everyone else, laid out all the breakfast, washed, cleaned, 45 mins of fasted cardio, showered, dressed, children up and ready for school . It’s a lovely feeling walking out of the door in the morning knowing that when I get home from work later, everything has been done. This frees up my evening for that essential family time and of course for me, my 2nd visit to the gym.
This takes a lot of time, practice and setting priorities – it may seem ludicrous at first – but take it one step at a time. Everyone starts somewhere – but once you’ve started, it’s a lot easier to progress, even if that means being able to fit in 15-20 minutes of time for a quick exercise DVD or even 10-minutes for a stress-relieving and body-loosening stretches before the day kicks off!
#2 Prepare Everything
‘Be prepared or prepare to fail!’ – As the saying goes!
Never guess what foods and how much of it you should be eating. Do your researching will help you more than you could ever imagine! You may even find a new passion from gradually learning to keep your diet healthy and simple.
✓ Food prep
… This for me in particular is a must. Eating and training takes up a huge amount of my time. I eat 6-8 meals a day (depending on where I am in relation to competition), all weighed and calculated down to the Macro’s. It can seem tiresome having to weigh everything, but I have quickly got used to what my portion sizes look like, meaning I can prepare all my food now without scales. Read: 3 steps to easy meal prep for beginners.
It has become my best friend! I prepare a good 3-4 days’ worth of food in advance, all stored in the fridge. This helps save time as well as keeping me on track with my diet plan. It also prevents you from being caught out when you’re in a rush.
It’s easy to grab anything you can lay your hands on when you have little time, then it’s usually something totally off your diet plan. At least this way, you’ll always have something prepped and ready to eat.
Always have some good snacks to hand too – if you’re finding it hard to weind yourself off your treats, don’t go cold turkey – like previously mentioned, take it one step at a time. For example, for a sweet-hit, try greek yoghurt/natural yoghurt and add a couple of oat cakes for a nice crunch – then top up with some flavour.
If you’re constantly on the go – Opt for protein-packed alternatives to your favourite treats to fill you up for longer – in addition to consuming less fat/sugar! For example, Protein wafers or Protein Muffins. There’s a huge range out there so it is easy to find something suited to your specific dietary goals and needs!
#3 Dedicate Time To A Training Plan
Set yourself a training plan week by week and if you don’t already, try using a diary. I could not live without my diary!
Each weekend I take a look at the week ahead and plan my training in and around what’s happening that week. Of course it doesn’t always go to plan, life has a way of throwing curve balls at you occasionally, but generally this really helps me focus my training for the week ahead.
✓ I like to set myself a little goal each week too. Nothing monumental, just small challenges that ensures you don’t get stuck in the same exercise routines!
✓ Regularly challenging yourself is essential, not only to physically increase your ability but it also helps to keep things interesting. Boredom can often be a factor that causes people to give up on their goals.
A lot people find it difficult to make it to the gym to reach their training goals, but there are also plenty of exercises to do at home. For example:
Take home message
We all live very different lives with differing times restraints, varying work and family commitments etc. But the key to success is simple. If you truly want to achieve something, finding the time to reach your goal shouldn’t be what holds you back.
Don’t use lack of time as your excuse. It’s all about planning and creating that time for you. Make 2016 your year.
Set that goal and go get it!