Managing Your Time as a Runner
Too often I hear the comments: ‘You do so much’ or ‘How do you find the time’? My motto has become that we all have the same 24 hours in a day. I try my best to utilize my time wisely and am always reassessing how to grow as a person while staying close to my loved ones. I think one of the most important things to do is first analyze how you spend your time and why are these things important in your life.
My weeks look like this: Monday through Friday, I do my day job at the Commissioner's Office for the Office of Agency Accountability. After work and on the weekends, I do my part-time job at NY Running Company. I mentor a high school sophomore through a program Imentor. I also am part of the leadership of Harlem Run as a pacer; and then there is life :-). Not to mention all of my travel, running, and cheering activities with Harlem Run.
And of course: fitness. At work, my co-workers know that before I clock in, I do my fitness challenges. I just completed swimming lessons and swam across the pool several times on my back with no help. I recently purchased a bike after not biking since 12 years old and in April, I biked 19.5 miles from the Bronx to Manhattan to Queens to Brooklyn. Next May, I’ll be biking the 5 Borough Bike Tour for a total of 40 miles.
Why? Because I want to learn. I have found passion in fitness and what it provides for my temple and the way I feel physically, but most importantly my mind and mental health. I say all this to say: Find what is important to you and use your time wisely.
For me, I've found some things that work when managing my time. I love to-do lists! I like to write things out and because I am a visual person, I need to see them -- post-it notes, calendars on my phone, you name it. I build a weekly schedule that allows me to make things happen, and do what makes me happy and healthy.
Create a plan on how to eliminate what I call time wasters. Ask yourself, what would you do with your new-found time if you eliminated things that didn't bring you happiness? When I did this, I came to realize how much time I was spending on TV, Netflix, and other things that weren't serving a purpose in my life. I made a decision cut out TV and be more active in developing myself as a person through health and fitness.
Since my training for my first marathon and then marathon training all throughout the
year of 2017, I have become more attentive to my schedule and sticking to plans. However, I've also learned to become more aware of taking breaks. I used to be at all the cheer stations, tried to make all events, visit everyone, and do it all. I now listen to my temple and give it what it needs. I think that it’s important for everything that we do to give yourself time to address and work on things.
I have found the joy in fitness and this is part of my journey and lifestyle. I have come to
see that I feel better internally and externally when I am physically active and engage my mind. It also provides me an outlet to let the stress/tension/bad day all go.
I also wouldn’t be able to do all of this without the support of my friends. I have some friends that would not take no for an answer and are always checking in, calling, picking me up, going to dinner and helping me maintain the balance of life, work, fitness, love, and so much more.
I am learning more and more how to be present in the moments, how to appreciate my temple and how important time for myself is. I leave you with this: time cannot be managed, but you can
manage how you use your personal time. You can create plans, routines, and habits that will make everyday tasks that much easier for you.
Give yourself a pat on the back regardless of what happens. You are human and you will never be able to be everywhere, there for everyone, and doing everything. You are allowed to say NO, you are allowed to make mistakes, you are allowed to fall behind. Allow yourself to be human.