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Thursday, January 14, 2016

Only 24 Hours

I’m not a great manager of my time.

I can plan with the best of them. Planning spreadsheets are a bit of an addiction with me. Most work procrastinators turn toward solitaire. I set up an Excel document for how many miles to run every day from now until the end of the year to make it to a total of 2,016. Seriously. I’ve already got that figured out.

This particular vent for my attention issues is fueled by a vast resource of ambition, without a lot of action behind it in recent years. Currently, though, things are going pretty well, and this morning, I eclipsed my total mileage from last January. You know, the month when I did the Rogue 30K and the 3M half marathon. I’ve already run more miles this year than I did then. Clearly I was not training well, but this year, I'm training better. (See yesterday.)

Thanks to that ambition, I’m also still continuing my yoga streak. Day 12 today brought a lot of balance postures which made me feel strong until I inevitably lost said balance and toppled. It’s a process, right?

Except on Sunday, my current method is to complete the yoga first, and then immediately head out for the run. I’ve found it to be very helpful in warming up my legs, which is great since our nights (and early mornings) are about as cold as they get in Texas. Also, after I finish a run, I’m less than inclined to put my sweaty self on a mat, so doing the yoga first is the best way to ensure that it gets done. For the last couple weeks, if I did not have enough time in the morning to complete both exercises, it hasn’t been a problem. I would just come home and yoga afterwards. In one week, that won’t be an option.

Because next week, I start rehearsals, and I’m going to have a lot less time to play with. I need to be sure and complete my workout before my work day starts. This means as much as 59 minutes (depending on the length of the yoga video and assuming I run a relaxed pace - yes, there's a spreadsheet) of work before breakfast, which is a tight fit considering the need for food, shower, and commute. I can’t go to work later because I have to be out in time for rehearsal, and I can’t start earlier because rehearsal goes so late. There are only 24 hours in a day, and at least some of them have to be reserved for sleep. I have no delusion that this will be an easy two weeks.

If it turns out that this schedule is not conducive to healthy living, then I will make adjustments as needed. For example, I might take an extra 30 minutes of sleep one night and skip yoga the next morning. Or perhaps I can do the yoga on my lunch break, or before rehearsal starts. It really depends on how those rehearsals go and what my body is telling me. So, my first rule is that I will listen to my body.

Still, I need to put myself in a position where I can be successful. By planning ahead, I can avoid a lot of the wasted time that often surrounds my workouts. For instance, I will be absolutely certain to set out my clothes for my workout the night before, checking the weather ahead of time to save decision-making moments in the morning. I can carefully plan my grocery list for the week and pack the next day’s lunch as soon as I get home. I will determine exactly what I want my workout to be… wait, I’ve already done that.

In fact, I already do all of these things. The less I have to think in the morning, the less I think about going back to bed. There will simply be a heightened awareness through the end of the month not to let these things slip. I won’t have much margin for error in my schedule, but I don’t need it.

Not as long as I stick to the plan.

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