How to Fit in Fitness

We’ve all been there… Each and every one of us über fitness nuts have brief stints where we fight internally and struggle to get a simple workout in. I’m fighting that battle on a regular basis. So I thought I would put some of my thoughts down to share with some of you.

It seems tougher and tougher to get a workout in these days. My job is busier than ever. I am working more hours than ever. Especially nowadays with the advent of smart phones. I even find myself working at 2 a.m. when I wake for no apparent reason and then check my e-mail while lying in bed. I get up at 5:01 a.m. to get ready for the work day and usually don’t get home until 7:31 p.m. Once home, I crack open the laptop and sit on the couch and get back to work. Before I know it, it’s time to put the kids to bed and I am winding down… Where did my day go??

On top of work, I keep up with two blogs, personal forum, writing my books, reading books, and studying fitness magazines to see the latest trends in getting bigger, stronger, and faster! Did I forget to mention the Facebook? Ahhhh..

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. Love wasting time communicating with people in the virtual world.

Lest we forget family. I juggle a wife and two kids. And, Trinity, who is eight years old, takes piano lessons and gymnastics. Guess who takes her? (well, actually we normally take turns on this one, but you get the picture). Now she talks about karate and dancing. Holy dump!!?? I haven’t even mentioned Xander and his karate, t-ball, lacrosse, and soccer!

So… Where do I find time to squeeze in exercise? Wait… we aren’t done. Before talking about how to do it, let talk about one more thing. Even when I’m in the workout groove (as it were), I usually get hit with something that takes me out physically. Like right now, it’s allergy season. During the winter it’s colds and flu’s. Do you feel me? Stop me if none of this sounds familiar. *crickets*

We all know that daily they prove how important rest and sleep are. So, how can I possibly get enough rest and do workouts too? I’ll tell you… Actually, I’ll let you in on a little secret. I cheat. That’s right folks… You heard it straight from the straight shooter. I don’t listen to that crap being spoon fed to me. Eight hours sleep my ass! I know that something has to bend. My work ain’t gonna bend (at least not on a regular basis). My family won’t bend (and I would not ask them to). Daily grind stuff won’t bend, because it is all necessary. And, taking time to eat will not suffer, because my body will not let me. That leaves one thing. Sleep. I steal from the sandman. I know that I’m going to get some boo’s and a few hisses after that statement. C’est la vie, baby! I’m not saying you have to do it. I’m just telling you what I do. Life is too short to worry about losing a few zzzzz’s. You snooze, you lose. The early bird catches the worm. And, my favorite, I’ll get all the sleep I need when I’m dead!

So, what does all that mean? You ask. It means that I set my alarm for 4 a.m. (an even number? WTF?) Okay, I really set it for 4:12 a.m. I wake up early and I bang out my run or my bicycle ride (depending on the day).

Got a better idea? Post a comment and let me know.

If you manage to squeeze in tough workouts despite the craziness of life, I salute you! Keep up the great work!!! And, please chime-in with your secret!

See you at 4:12 a.m. sprinting down the empty, dark, and chilly road!


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About Vaughn Ripley

Vaughn is a happily married daddy, author, and CIO. He is an HIV+ hemophiliac, and is one of the longest surviving HIV+ people in the universe.
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  1. You’re an inspiration, not just fitness but in LIFE! I too am a fitness junkie. Follow me on twitter:

    When do I workout? Always first thing in the morning on an empty stomach, other than black coffee that is!

  2. Dan McNally says

    From daily five mile runs, to daily five mile walks, as my knees deteriorated from daily five mile runs, I deteriorated to no exercise at all . . . and you know the results. At 65, and retired, I am walking, daily, trying to get back to four or five miles a day . . . wish me luck. If I knew at 30, what I know now, I’d have never run, but done the five mile walks, instead . . . 6’2″ men who weigh 225 should never run unless they are chasing a criminal! Knees aren’t designed for that!

    • Dan,

      I feel you. As our bodies age our younger years often come back to plague us. It is important to understand where your actions will take you. Everything in life comes with consequences and reactions. It’s important to establish healthy and proactive fitness ideals at a young age to ensure a healthy body as we progress in the years.


  3. I’m a fan of early morning workouts too! That way life has less of an opportunity to get in the way and there are no excuses. My husband gets up by 4:15 to get his in so he can to his office by 6:30. I’m up around 5 to be done before my kiddo wakes up at 7. I can’t get outside to run on weekday early mornings, so I often do that after kiddy drop off, but still early enough that the distractions have not gotten in the way. Plus, my husband and I have a pct to support each other’s workout times. He has not missed a day in nearly 3 years. My result — 217 training hours YTD according to WKO+, including just shy of 2,400 (trainer) miles on my bike and 370 running miles (all outside).

    Happy training! Know that I’ll be at it every day, keeping you virtual company in the early AM!

    – Andrea