It’s a stretch, but there’s a certain poetry that will come from riding my 450th ride on my 45th birthday, don’t you think?
Why I Love It
I didn’t discover CycleBar until two weeks after my 43rd birthday. I had never taken a spin class, although I’ve had plenty of colleagues obsessed with Soul Cycle.
I didn’t really even want to try it, but it had been three years since my last baby was born, and it was time.
It’s the perfect workout for moms. It’s high cardio with core elements, but easy on the joints; it’s dynamic enough to require enough mental engagement that you can’t be anywhere else but in the room; it’s competitive enough that you’ve got to be consistent; and it’s only 45 minutes, so if you’re lucky enough to live near a studio, you can devote an hour fifteen to yourself without derailing your day.
Why It Matters
So I’ve completed 279 workouts over 16 months, which works out to an average of 17 workouts/month (roughly), which means I’ll have to step up my efforts to achieve my goal. I’ll need to average 24 workouts/month for the next seven months, which doesn’t seem too daunting until you realize that it means working out six days/week instead of four. That’s a big commitment.
How To Reverse Engineer Your Goals
Nothing is as simple as it seems, right? On the surface, I should be able to carve out six days/week to get to the studio. It’s in my best interests — good for my health and my mental health, anti-aging, restorative, balancing, and more.
But as a busy mom with three kids, who also is running an expanding business, who manages a household, has an aging large-breed dog, and would like some semblance of a life, it’s a lot.
So to commit doesn’t just require a wish or a mental pledge; it requires pre-planning and making arrangements to increase my odds of success. I have to enroll the stakeholders (get my family on board), invest (pay for the membership), and evaluate opportunity cost (make room for it in my schedule at the expense of competing priorities).
When I back into the date — always set a deadline for your goal — I can write 450 on May 22, 2020, and countdown from there, anticipating my schedule, rearranging to accommodate scheduling conflicts and travel, using the best information I have right now to map it out. Always start now with the best information available.
For example, I know my husband’s schedule is relatively fixed. He has Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays off, which could mean I could workout those days, but more likely means we will be on the go as a family and/or getting in quality time. That means I’ll need to schedule my workouts on Tuesdays — Fridays and if I get in extra days over his three-day weekend, bonus.
As I look at our shared calendar, I can see that we have trips booked between now and then, so I’ll need to schedule workouts on the road. No big deal theoretically, but it does require additional effort.
However, I did that on our most recent trip, and this was my view from the outdoor spin studio, and although the bike wasn’t amazing, I wasn’t complaining. Pros and cons, right?
Create Win-Win Scenarios
After I’ve scheduled my workouts, by backing into the date and accommodating anything that might get in my way, it’s time to be honest with myself about viability and sustainability. It’s late October in Colorado, which means between now and May, it’s going to be cold more days than not. Roads might get bad. It’s going to be dark in the morning and in the evening, and I’m going to have every excuse to skip my workouts. When you’re dressed in layers for #sweaterweather, drinking tea by the fire, cozy in your house, it’s hard to feel motivated, so I need to prepare for that. My why must be greater than my excuses.
I’m not going to share my why, but I assure you it is. That said, I know myself well. If I schedule the 9 am classes and school drop-off doesn’t go as planned, I have an out. I don’t want an out. If I schedule the 5:15 am classes and drag my butt out of bed at 4:45, I’m halfway done with my workout before I’m fully awake, and I’ve just carved out an additional 2–3 hours to coach, write, build my course, or work on my business. That’s a win-win friends and if you can find one, take it and capitalize.
That said, it also means early bedtimes or power naps, so I’ve got to plan accordingly. I can set my shoes, socks, undies, yoga pants, tank top, sports bra, and contacts out the night before so I don’t have to wake up hubby while fumbling around in the dark each morning. That helps too. And I can set my phone alarm the night before, and then leave my phone downstairs, so I have to get up to shut it off. There’s no time to snooze around here. It’s the little tactics that will ensure my strategy work.
Still, even with the best plans, stuff happens. The schools could cancel for weather conditions. Someone in our family could get the flu. Who knows? I can’t plan for everything — I don’t believe in preparing for worst-case scenarios — but I can anticipate what will get in my way and make allowances. That may mean squeezing in a double here or there or giving myself a break if I need one.
The goal isn’t about the number; it’s about following through on a promise to myself, showing up with integrity, and reaping the benefits of a lifestyle that fuels my success not just in my health journey, but in my motherhood and entrepreneurial journeys as well.
I’ll keep you posted!