Most of us don’t have a problem scheduling and maintaining our time in the gym or pursuing our active lifestyle. But some of us do. Even more, some of us want to see more results as evidence for our time spent training our bodies. This is hard to achieve simply through a few workouts a week: exercise is a lifestyle, not just a workout
In order to achieve optimal results and have bodies that reflect our lifestyle, we need to make it a lifestyle.
I don’t go to the gym and workout thinking that at some point in my life when XYZ is achieved, that I’ll stop working out. I also don’t use my 30 minutes in the gym every day to offset a sedentary lifestyle.
Activity IS my lifestyle, and movement is my passion.
Are you using your time in the gym to offset an otherwise sedentary lifestyle? If so, I have some bad news for you: an hour in the gym 3 x a week can not offset 6+8 hours of sitting everyday.
It just can’t and it won’t.
So what do I mean by ‘make it a lifestyle?’
In my mind, I know I will always be active and moving. I don’t spend hours on the couch watching TV every nite (though the occasional movie or show here or there is just fine), my hobbies and passions revolve around movement (snowboarding, hiking, yoga, fly-fishing, rock climbing etc).
Having and maintaining an active lifestyle is much different then using movement to offset XYZ lifestyle choices and habits.
Aristotle once wrote, “we are what we repeatedly do.”
What makes you, YOU?
What rituals do you consistently do: that makes up your core values and priorities.
Rituals are more enjoyable, sustainable, and fulfilling than “habits” or “chores.”
What rituals are essential to your happiness, health and productivity?
What are we willing to do to ensure our life supports the maintenance and management of our core essential rituals? How likely are you to make exercise a lifestyle, not just a workout?
The key to moving from who we are to who we want to be, is not in how we manage our time, but how we manage our energy.
Do you ever feel like you’re spinning your wheels at an even pace from the moment you wake up until you go to bed? Do you find yourself constantly multi-tasking and checking things off your list yet always feeling like you aren’t really getting anything accomplished?
Most of us spend our time in the medium energy zone: getting shit done through a variety of multi-tasking and auto pilot programming.
Until recently, I can say there were things in my life that impacted my ability to singularly focus on one thing and be super f*cking productive and creative with it.
In the last few weeks, I’ve disassembled the email alert system on my computer, scheduled block time (or uninterrupted time in my days to create for my biz), and committed to only checking my email and social media 2x per day during specific blocks of time.
It hasn’t been through better management of my TIME that I’ve started getting more shit in my life accomplished, being more productive and creative etc.
It’s been through the management of my energy.
Going back to Aristotle, we are what we repeatedly do. What are you REPEATEDLY doing with your energy?
Where and what are you giving your energy (thoughts, count too!)?
Earlier in the year I went through a sudden and painful split with my partner.
Subsequently, I spent A LOT of my energy every day drowning in the breakup. I was giving all my energy every day to my biz, my clients, my workouts and a ton of energy to the break up.
I was giving, giving, giving, and not taking the ESSENTIAL time to restore, renew and recover.
As critical to our success as rituals and energy management (where are you spending your energy every day?) are, so is intentional renewal.
Think about the scenario I outlined 3 paragraphs up: I was going, going, going. Doing doing, doing. Yet most of the time I felt I wasn’t accomplishing or producing anything super meaningful. I wasn’t taking the time to intentionally check out and tune out of the daily hubbub to restore and renew. TO feel refreshed, invigorated, relaxed and ready for more.
What does it mean to restore and renew?
In order for me to be creative and productive, I have to take time for myself. In order for me to see results at the gym, I have to train but I also have to allow for my body to recover and for my muscles to adapt to the stress of exercise and to allow them the time they need to grow.
This is also energy management.
Remember how I mentioned I’ve disassembled the email alert system and the other daily tweeks I’ve implemented in order to better manage where I am putting and releasing energy all day?
Think about how much energy we waste on the mundane and boring, and tasking.
Now, imagine if you could harness all the energy you have and direct it towards your active lifestyle goals.
You’d probably have more energy and time to get to the gym a few extra days, or to get some home workouts prioritized, to adopt the LIFESTYLE that reflects your desires.
Rest and Renewal are critical components of the getting sh*t done (and getting it done well) lifestyle. If we want to adopt exercise and movement as a lifestyle, we have to stop seeing it as just a workout here and another one there.