Are You Running Out of Time?
You’ve got a mile long list of things you have to do, need to do, and want to do. For most women the first to go is the things they want to do. Somehow during this season, it gets busier. Perhaps because what you’d really like is an evening to read or write your holiday cards in front of fire with your toes wiggling in slippers. Snow day!
I laugh because I just got one. It didn’t go quite like the scene above, but I did get a lot done distraction free since I wasn’t going anywhere anyway.
I have a couple hacks for you that have bought me more time. Somewhere in the weeks at the end of the year many of us strip down the closets. We find the old and the forlorn. We remove the things we really aren’t wearing even though we feel guilty about removing them. We give them away or at least take the first step and move them to a box to make it more painless once we’re sure we really aren’t ever going to wear them.
I had this kind of epiphany when I moved out of a huge house two years ago. I left before it was sold in fact and left all my belongings sitting in boxes in the middle of rooms in the house. I left with what fit in a small SUV along with my dog, two computers and rolled two states away to live in a small basement apartment. Living that way for three months was freeing. I realized how much “stuff” I don’t need!
Where I got into trouble was moving into a rental home on top of a mountain. The master bedroom was configured uniquely and my dressers were arranged differently than they had been for the last 20 years. Out of habit though (cringe as I write this), I put the socks in the same sock drawer, the shorts in the shorts drawer, and so on.
What I did was make it likely that to get dressed I would criss-cross around my bedroom two or three times to pull together an outfit! When you start to count every minute and your workouts are down to 20 minutes when you wish they were an hour every minute counts. So I got serious about every minute. I realized simply getting organized with things I do on a daily basis – creating a system for them just like you would in a business – would save me 5 minutes here or there all day. Not much, why bother? It’s the difference between 20 minutes and 30 or 40 that I desperately needed in order to feel my best and function my best.
So here’s where I found extra workout time
1. I organized jog bras and shorts together in the pairs that I wear together. I put tights right beside them in case it’s cold. The long sleeve shirts were in the next drawer. The socks and the visors/headbands in another cubby. I’m standing in the same spot getting everything I need. No more criss-cross around the room to pull together a coordinated outfit.
Time saved: 5 minutes
2. In the kitchen, I make smoothies daily. The Vitamix is on the counter. The refrigerator is across the room. By the time I have spinach, almond milk, and peanut butter for instance, my hands are full. I have to go back for ice, and frozen fruit. Then there’s the cupboard to add the coconut, or flax and cocoa. I blend it, and have to repeat my footsteps putting things away.
Enough! I do this daily and like preferring certain exercise outfits, I like certain smoothie flavors more than others. I rotate one or two basically for a while. So here’s my quick fix for that. I put all the ingredients for a single smoothie in a baggy. Zip lock it and freeze the whole thing.
The protein powder, the ice, the frozen fruit, the spinach, the coconut, or nut butter, flax or chia…it’s all in there ready to go. I grab one baggy the almond or coconut milk I’m using, dump into the blender and whir. I put the milk carton back, rinse and go.
Time saved: 5 minutes
I’m still looking for other hacks. This new year I’m treating my body like a business. The more I spend time on planes and in meetings or on webinars the more important it is to treat time like money. And like my motto, fitness is every body’s business, I need systems to make that happen easier and smoothly.
Got a hack that’s saved you time that you use for healthy habits? Share it in the comments!