A few years back, if I couldn’t dedicate at least 90 minutes to hit the gym, I wouldn’t do it at all. It seemed to me such a waste of time to workout for 30 minutes or less. Now I see - I was stuck in the “all-in or all-out” mentality. I am proud to admit that I was wrong. At the end of the day, the exercise that counts is the one that you actually end up doing!
Little things add-up
Having learned from my mistakes as a coach and fitness aficionado I realized that very few people are able to dedicate a lot to time for a workout. It is way more realistic to integrate fitness into our routine, rather than to have fitness completely overthrow our lifestyle.
Most people have a never-ending list of responsibilities that rank higher on the priority list than a 90-minute barre class or lifting session. And that’s absolutely fine! Working with what you have, such as dropping down for 50 push-ups on your living room floor or opting for a 7-minute HIIT session that you found on YouTube, is definitely going to do you more good than not doing anything. Two minutes is more than zero (duuh). “But…”, you might say, “I want 6-pack abs and be able to deadlift 3x of my body weight!”. Well, then you have to understand the trade-offs and re-structure your priorities! First of all, ask yourself, what do you need a 6-pack for? To impress someone? Or you saw a model on a magazine cover and thought that you don’t look that way, but you are supposed to? You should probably be aware that impressive physiques are usually very temporary or even hiding very unhealthy lifestyle and eating patterns. If you have a particular goal, you have to re-evaluate your priorities. However, maybe all you are aiming for is keeping up with your kids and not getting gassed after chasing them around for 5 minutes. Fitness to most of us is just an activity that might make us feel better! Being fit isn’t necessarily about “going all-in” or following a strict regimen (even though it can be for some of us). It is more about showing up whenever you can, working with what you have and therefore enabling happier, healthier, more fulfilling lives.
Something is better than nothing. So start with something that you can actually accomplish rather than aiming for perfection. It's never all-in or all-out.