The Everyman: Managing Your Time

Pressed for time? Try multitasking by running or biking to work. Photo:

Here are some tips on how to get the most out of your day.

The constant struggle for amateur endurance athletes is trying to fit everything into a 24-hour period.

There’s work, eating, working out, commuting, sleeping and everything else that takes place on a daily basis. It’s a lot to pack into one block of time that seems to get smaller as each week of a rigorous training plan goes by.

Take me, for example. As a full-time freelancer, I have the luxury of working from home. But that doesn’t mean my life is easier. Sure there’s no commute, which is nice (and equally as nice is being able to work in running shorts, a sweatshirt, or even a cycling kit). But having multiple jobs going on at the same time can lead to some overwhelming moments.

It also, in some cases, can result in either missed workouts or workouts that are cut short. When you’re training for a race, or doing something like the Competitor 30-Day Challenge, that isn’t ideal.

Here are a few tips to make sure your life stays on track, regardless of how busy your schedule might be.

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Wake Up Early

This is one area I need to work on. Instead of waking up and starting work or heading to the office, set the alarm 45 minutes or an hour earlier than normal to go for a run, do a quick strength session, or, if you have the time, head to the gym for a swim, treadmill run, or some weight lifting. Start by doing it 2-3 times a week. After a few weeks, it will become part of your routine and crawling out of bed earlier won’t be as hard.

Run At Work

If you have an hour for lunch, and a place to clean yourself up, spend half of it running. A lunch break, particularly in the colder weather, is a great time to go for a run. The sun is high so the temperature usually feels warmer than it actually is. It’s also a great way to break up the day. If your break is shorter, consider running and then eating lunch at your desk when you get back.

Bike/Run Commute

Depending on how far your commute is, biking or running to work is a great way to get some exercise during the day. Think about it: If you live five miles from work, you can put in 10 miles of running in one day. If you’re 15 miles from the office, a round trip bike ride amounts to 30 miles.

Have A Schedule

Putting your entire week into a spreadsheet might seem crazy, but it’s an easy way to stay organized and on task. This can be a good Sunday evening project. Try to schedule each day’s activities — waking up, working out, commuting, working, and even eating — and then follow the schedule as best you can.

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Don’t Get Stressed

If you can’t fit everything in, don’t worry. Did your boss ask you to work an extra hour? Is the pouring rain preventing you from running? Traffic on the way home? Unexpected things happen, and missing a workout isn’t the end of the world. Do what you can but always make time to relax and unwind with your family. At the end of the day, that’s more important.

Have a time management tip? Comment below or Tweet me @jason_devaney1.

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