How to Make Time for Fun and Health When You're Busy

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Hello, dailySpark readers! Anne here from the food and fitness blog fANNEtastic food. After 6 years of working, I changed careers and headed back to school last fall to become a Registered Dietitian. Between being in graduate school full time and blogging as my part time job, I keep myself very busy. Here's how I manage to squeeze in fun and stay healthy amidst all the chaos.

  1. Multitask! I love combining fun and health by planning social workouts with friends. That way I kill two birds with one stone-- I get in my workout for the day AND I get some social time, too! I love to meet friends for runs, walks, yoga classes, tennis, bike rides-- anything active.

  2. If you feel guilty working out when you need to be studying or working, then combine the two! Bring flash cards, work-related reading or notes, or books with you to the gym. Especially right before exams, I'll study on the elliptical or bike.

  3. …But remember that you don't ALWAYS have to be productive. Sometimes when I get really busy I start to feel guilty taking breaks, but one thing that my yoga classes have taught me is that taking time for yourself is JUST as important as being productive. Give yourself a mental break at least once or twice a day, whether it's an outing with friends or family, reading a good book, going to a yoga class, or simply taking a quick walk outside. In addition to relieving stress, taking breaks will also allow you to return to work clearer and more focused. Win/win! In fact, before writing this guest post (and after knocking out a few blog-related projects this afternoon), I treated myself to my favorite yoga class.

  4. If you're still having trouble fitting in exercise and fun-- write it into your planner or calendar! At the beginning of the week, I'll look at my calendar, figure out where I can fit in exercise, and write it in (in ink!). The more specific, the better-- for example, don't just write "work out," but something like "40 minute run" or "yoga-- 1 hour." Be sure to write it in a specific time slot, nmtoo, not just on that day in general. Treat exercise like any other concrete appointment that you can't skip-- this will really help to make sure you don't blow it off! You can also use this strategy to schedule yourself mental breaks.

For more tips for making time for health when you're busy, check out my recent blog post on the topic and Nicole's blog series "Habits of Fit People"!

I'd love to hear some of your tips, too-- I'm always looking for new ones! How do you make time for fun and health when you're really busy?