Healthy and Sane

Making exercise a priority during a busy week

October 27th, 2009 · 17 Comments · breakfast, dessert, salad, snacks

I know, I know, I’ve been complaining about long hours at work for what seems like ages, but that’s the reality of my life these days. Yesterday was another 12 hour day, and there are a few more of those in my future. I’m hoping to be done with this project by tomorrow. Fingers crossed.  My old habits of reaching for food in time of stress are coming back. I just don’t have time to deal with them right now, but what I have made sure is to make exercise a priority even during a busy work week (month?). Exercise clears my head, it keeps me energized, it keeps me healthy, and what I learned is that the work will still be there when I come back and that hour away from the office is an hour well spent! I even tried a few new classes at the gym! Here is last week:

I was having so much fun with my workouts, I actually realized only on Sunday night that I worked out 8 days in a row (although there were a few easier workout days there like Tuesday and Thursday). I decided to take a rest day yesterday (Monday), which definitely made for a longer day in the office and extra munching. I need to get my sweat on during the day, or else I’m just not myself. It’s important to keep reminding myself this, otherwise it’s too easy to fall into the “I’m too busy” trap.

Here are yesterday’s eats. There were also nuts, frozen yogurt, and cider donuts consumed late at night. 😳


2 frozen waffles with Barney Butter and 1/2 banana




An asian pear from a co-worker’s yard. How cute is this guy?! :)



Mixed greens, grape tomatoes, mom’s roasted red peppers, grilled chicken and mushrooms.




Dancing Deer Baking Co caramel pecan brownie with tea


Best brownie EVER! Fudgy and soft… mmmmmmmm 😉


This made me smile 😀


2 Rivita crackers with light laughing cow cheese and grapes



Tangy stir fried vegetables with tofu that I made here and froze the leftovers for a night like last night. Before: frozen solid…


After: yummy homemade Asian meal :)


Dessert: Kellogg’s sweet & salty granola bar


Lots of junk ingredients in this guy but it was in my desk drawer and I needed more food. Despite an atrocious ingredients list, this was quite yummy 😀


Like I said, more unphotographed food was consumed later in the night but that’s life. Do you make exercise a priority during a busy week, or choose to spend that time getting your work done?

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17 Comments so far ↓

  • #1 - Madeline @ GreensandJeans

    Exercise is always a priority for me! I will get up early to get it in if I need to. My college roommate used to tell me that if coffee is what got her to normal every day, exercise is what gets me there!

  • #2 - Nicole (dishin')

    I’m so impressed with last week’s workout schedule. I’m not very good at working out when my schedule is crazy. I need to make it a priority!

    That brownie looks amazing!!!

  • #3 - Tiffany

    i don’t always have a chance to make it to the gym during the week, but there’s a hidden beauty to being a preschool teacher; my students keep me on my toes. I’m always on my feet, either walking, playing with them, lifting them up for hugs, ect….it’s kept my legs and arms in pretty good shape :)

  • #4 - Adrienne

    Wow, you are one dedicated lady! I actually realized last week that it was time for me to start exercising again – I was feeling sluggish and yet having a hard time sleeping, drinking way too much caffeine and alcohol and just in general not treating myself very well. My biggest hurdle is lack of time, too! I always want to make time for my hobbies (cooking, reading, playing games) and rarely seem to want to work out after a long day at work. I started getting up when my boyfriend gets up (eeeearly – 5:30) and working out before I even get ready for the workday. So far it’s working, we’ll see how well I stick to it. I feel better and am sleeping better after only a few days!

  • #5 - Kelly

    Exercise used to be the first thing that fell off my list but lately I’ve been making time for it. I find I’m more focused when I have time to work out. It also helps that I focus on the exercise I enjoy. It may not burn as many calories as other things but I find that I am more motivated to do it because I enjoy it.

  • #6 - 24carrot

    Your salad looks amazing. I want it!

    Thank you for the adding agave to coffee suggestion – I’m going to give it a try.

  • #7 - Sara

    working 12 hour days sounds awful! I don’t know how you do it. When I know I will not be able to exercise I TRY to alter my eating for that day to make up for it a little. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

  • #8 - MelissaNibbles

    Rest days are just as important as workout days. It gives your muscles a chance to recover and respond to the stress from your workouts. Enjoy them :)

  • #9 - angieinatlanta

    I agree – time spent exercising is always time well spent because I feel MORE productive at work afterwards! I’m glad you’re making time for yourself!!

  • #10 - Jamie

    Hey there,
    I read your blog all the time and you are very inspirational with your healthy lifestyle and busy schedule. I often times also hold myself to really high standards of always working out and eating so healthy but I think the best thing we can do for ourselves is just to always do our best and cut ourselves some slack sometimes.

    Sometimes I work instead of working out and other times I KNOW that I want to workout and that it is important for me to feel good.

    SOo I guess for me it depends!


  • #11 - One Healthy Apple

    I try to get workouts in when I can, but with grad school and more thank full time at school, I do what I can and focus more on nutrition and walking, or cleaning the house or more functional activities.

    Loved all your eats today!

  • #12 - Kate

    It depends HOW busy, and what kind of busy. If I just have a buttload of work to do, I always fit it in, and if it’s the sort of week where I work 8-8 every day, I usually manage. When the nights start getting too much later, morning workouts become less feasible, and I don’t want to push to get my exercise in if it exhausts me. And if i’m in meetings or working closely with others, I generally have to skip the run!

  • #13 - Carly

    I always make exercise a priority. I just know how much better I feel when I get in a good workout. I’m a teacher and the stress I feel leaving work can only be diminished by a great workout on the way home :) I actually got my husband into the gym with me this week too!
    I noticed that you said there was lots of munching at work on your day off. I find that I crave junk food more on days that I DON’T work on than on days that I do. Sounds kinda counterproductive? Oh well! Good thing I work out more days than I don’t.
    Hope your work week is off to a great start :)

  • #14 - Elina

    Madeline- that’s so great. I wish I was a morning person. Working out before work/classes even start is certainly a great way to fit exercise in! :)

    Nicole – I feel SO much better when I work out. It’s tough to find the time sometimes, but I’m always motivated to do it. I think the key is keeping it fun!

    Tiffany – working with kids definitely sounds like a workout within itself. Who needs the gym when you are running around all day already? 😉

    Adrienne – keep up the good work! 😀

    Kelly – I definitely agree. Since I stopped training for a race, I find that I just do what I want and that’s so freeing. There is never a day when I HAVE TO do a particular workout. I just listen to my body and it’s been great 😀

    Sara – I think concentrating on food (something you can control during a busy week) is a really approach and advise that I should follow. Unfortunately I have a harder time eating healthy on days I don’t work out. It’s really strange. I can’t stop thinking about food so I just give in… and the choices are often less than stellar. Like Carly said below, good thing I work out most days 😆

    Melissa – totally agreed! :mrgreen:

    Jamie -thanks so much! It definitely depends for me too. If I’m already exhausted and I’m busy at work, I’ll skip a workout (why kill yourself for no reason) but if I’m itching to take a break and sweat it out, I try to make time for it 😀

    One Healthy Apple – that’s a great way to stay active. We all do what we can, and our best is enough! :)

    Kate – funny that you mention working with people. I feel like so often when I’m super excited for a particular class, I have a conference call/meeting that comes up last minute. Obviously in those circumstance I have to skip the gym (and hopefully go later…) I hate when that happens! :)

    Carly – you sound like me. Great job on getting the hubby to the gym with you this week. I think mine if going to sign up tomorrow. Right, Adam? 😉

  • #15 - Shannon

    Exercise is a priority for me for exactly the reasons you said. I just posted tonight about how I was tired and frustrated this morning, but took a break to run and felt ten times better and much more productive when I returned. I don’t work 12 hour days though….I really commend you for fitting it into such a busy work day. Most people wouldn’t. Good job!

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