When Life Gets In The Way

“Okay, you start Monday at 9.”

Oops, what did I just get myself into?

24 hours before that moment I was searching online researching new social media channels seeing if there was anything cool I hadn’t tried out recently. Then the forces that be (Google) lead me down the wondering path of looking up jobs at start-ups in London.

Nothing really picked my fancy and I really didn’t have the time with all my gym clients and The Fitness Hippie but then I saw a little start-up under the name of Cuvva. Offering a 12 week position as a marketing intern to help out with everything from online advertising, to PR and making coffee.

It sounded like a sweet little deal as it was something that genuinely interested me and I thought I could learn a lot. It would involve working with a small team, including the cofounders, to help build a business that is changing how an industry works. Plus, it was only 12 weeks long so it’ll be over before I knew it.

What I didn’t expect was for them to email me back one hour later saying come into the office tomorrow for a chat.

That was when it happened. The invitation to start working for Cuvva for 12 weeks, starting in four days.

O Google, what have you started!

The issue wasn’t getting up at 7am to get to London and arriving back home at 7pm. It was how the hell am I still going to juggle all of my gym clients at the same time, keep up with all the online coaching with The Fitness Hippie, and still have time to see my girlfriend and have a social life?

Like what happens most of the time when there doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day, something got dropped out my daily routine.

Not by conscious decision but rather by lack of preparation. Not because of lack of time, but rather lack of time management.

I could make up a bunch of rational excuses why it got dropped out, like the fact I was out the house from 8am till 9pm pretty much every day and working at the weekend also. But I’ve never been one for excuses.

The thing that got dropped out my daily routine was exercise and healthy eating. Now don’t get me wrong, I didn’t eat like a pig or anything. I was still making a fair amount of my food from natural ingredients but for my liking there was too much pre-bought food.

And for exercise, that had dropped down to maybe one run a week at max. Instead of my usual 3-4 days a week of mixed exercise.

For the first week or two my goal was to get more efficient with my daily schedule to free up more time for exercise and cooking. Although I got more efficient, that didn’t translate so much into healthier choices. Instead I just spent even more time on The Fitness Hippie because you know, there is always more that hasn’t been done yet.

Then week three, four and five went by and I was in the habit cycle. Get up at 7am, leave at 7:45am, get home at 6:50pm. Put on my gym clothes, drive to the gym, train clients till 9pm. Get home and work on The Fitness Hippie related work. Bed at 11pm.

Rinse and repeat.

Here’s is the thing. I had the desire to change but I just wasn’t going the right way about it.

I couldn’t fit everything in because I was trying to do it like I’d always done it. Before, I’d created a lifestyle for myself which I made sure I had an abundance of time to exercise and eat well. Which meant I could take my time with my cooking. If I didn’t have all the ingredients I could just shoot down the road and get them, with no real time restriction on prep time.

With exercise I could pick and choose when I’d do it. Working out in the morning was always the better time for me and I’d like to often do social sports like badminton and squash.

I didn’t have those luxuries now though. It was time for me to do exactly what I tell all of my coaching clients.

Make a fail-proof plan.

By that I mean make a plan so easy to stick to that there is no reason to not follow it accept for your own lack of discipline.

Just spending 1-2 hours on the weekend to set out the plan made me feel a lot happier and confident, proving that I definitely had the time to fit it in my day. It was just a matter of being better prepared.

Literally the day after I’d completed writing the plan everything changed back to how I wanted it.

Every evening I would make dinner and any preparations necessary for the next day’s breakfast or lunch. In the mornings I made sure I had really quick breakfasts so I didn’t have to wake up super early, and I’d put my lunch box in the bag and that’s it. I’m off for the day.

Every Sunday I’d make a shopping list for all the ingredients and go shopping, sticking nearly exactly to the shopping list (a little cake might slip in there too!)

Then Tuesday’s and Saturday’s I’d get an upper body workout in, working on calisthenics training, and Thursday evenings would consist of a nice run!

Of course there are still times I wonder off the weekly food planner or change the day I workout. But the whole point is to know that you have a plan to guide you 80% of the way. Allowing for little deviations every now and then!

The plan is not there to restrict you and make everything more boring. But rather to add more freedom to your life to allow you to do more of the things you love.

So why am I telling you this story about my recent struggle?

Mainly to push the point home that nobody’s perfect and life inevitably always gets in the way.

It’s okay to have periods of time where things kind of go to shit.  That’s life.

No matter how invincible you may feel at times, there will always be times when the unexpected happens.

All too commonly we look at people’s Instagram pages and see just how great they seem to be doing. They’re eating perfectly healthy meals, always positive and just seem unstoppable. But remember what you see on there is simply a few snippets someone has specifically plucked out of their life for you to see.

It’s very rare to see the down periods, the days when they go out for a drink with their friends and go to town on a Big Mac with extra fries.

At the end of the day, we’re all human.

And remember, when life does inevitably get in the way, don’t take it as something that is there to beat you down. Use it as a way for you to come back stronger.

I’ll be breaking down how I created my Fail-Proof Plan and sharing it with you all as a free mini-guide over the next couple of weeks. This will an exclusive bit of content only available to the community.

If you haven’t joined the community already do so now, it’s free only for the next 30 or so people!

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