Fitness: How to set boundaries to free up time for exercise and rest

Whether you’re stuck in the rat race of career or a busy home and family life, or everything, it can be hard to find the time to eat well, move more and to sleep but you can make time by saving time.

Monday, 15th March 2021, 4:51 pm
Creating time to recover is just as important as getting a good exercise regime. (Photo by WILLIAM WEST/AFP via Getty Images)
Creating time to recover is just as important as getting a good exercise regime. (Photo by WILLIAM WEST/AFP via Getty Images)

We put enormous pressure on ourselves to do everything and be everything for everyone and when it comes to our own health and fitness, we just want a quick fix.

But by implementing simple boundaries in your life to save yourself time we can rediscover focused time to exercise, rest and to focus on your core values.

The first boundary is self-discipline and taking responsibility for our own journey by committing to take action. This can feel empowering or at times, bitter sweet as it is easier to blame others or external factors but we must start from within and whilst certain situations may not be our fault, what we can do is begin to take control of the now by tracking our behaviour so we can become aware of areas we are strong in and where we are neglecting and need to turn our attention to.

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Writing out our goals that are aligned with our core values is proven to help us stay on track as well as how to reduce certain triggers.

Make sure you drill down into the specifics of your goal to start with realistic ‘wins’ such as ‘get fit’ could be a larger ‘aim of improving holistic fitness.’

So break it down into nutrition, rest/recovery and activity and then drill down into your weaker area e.g. Total fitness includes cardiovascular and muscular endurance and strength.

So focus on a goal within that such as improving muscular strength through lifting weights to increase hypertrophy.

For me, I am a reformed ‘crammer,’ i.e. I naturally have a high energy and ambition to be productive in all areas of my life by making sure that I fitted as much as possible into one day as possible, until I literally collapsed with exhaustion.

So my goal was to rest and sleep more, especially after being diagnosed with chronic fatigue, I needed to pace myself to perform at all.

This huge breakthrough came from pausing and resting more in between activities which has meant that I have become more efficient and productive in my work, dance teaching and fitness activities, achieving better results in a shorter time.

If you’re more inclined to rest and pause than move, then you’re tipping the opposite way to me, which is why we all need support for different areas of our health.

Then as we train with our mental kettlebell before we get on to our body, we can begin to mentally declutter our lives and minds. There might be certain avoidable triggers such as places or people you can dissociate from or limit contact with these people, reduce stressors at a certain place or break habit chains which stimulate negative emotions. We need to begin asserting our own boundaries and say ‘no’ more because we have a bigger ‘why’ by saying ‘yes,’ to our wellbeing.

“Afraid of saying no? Keep tight boundaries.. Every time we say yes when we should say no we allow someone to invade our boundaries.. People are allowed to make requests of you but do not allow them to make demands of you.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​