Working a full-time job, being an entrepreneur, training for multiple marathons a year, taking care of your family, going to the gym religiously, being a good friend, and constantly seeking personal growth… Trying to simultaneously balance these can really take a toll on you.
I am often asked: “how do you do it all?” If you struggle with balancing work-life, personal-life, training or exercising, please continue reading. Here are 4 secrets of how I became a successful New York city-based businesswoman and long-distance runner while being at my best mentally and physically.
Stick to your routine
I love routines. Once something is out of the ordinary, I get super anxious. From the moment I started doing it all (running, work, puppy, family), I established a game plan. A routine that I follow every day. Every “task” has its place and time. Scratching things from my to-do-list fulfills me. This might sound weird, but it is really how I am able to manage it all.
It sounds very structured and, yes, it is. By having a routine that I stick to 95% of the time, I’m able to get my day done. If you’re struggling to feel overwhelmed or exhausted, consider creating a routine that suits you well.
Being a marathoner is like having a fulltime job. In order to not miss out on your runs, because you feel like you can’t make it happen or you have other things to do, schedule your runs first thing in the morning, for instance.
My runs usually are very early in the AM before work. I start the day in a much better place after a morning run and running is off my list as early as possible. And I continue checking things off my list till it is bedtime.
By having a place and time set for everything you have to do, you may feel less stressed and anxious.
Be professional in and out
When I’m wearing my “business hat” at my full-time job in Digital Marketing or during events or meetings for my own business, I want to act, feel, and look professional. Everything not business-related won’t be on my plate or mind at this time (see stick to your routine — everything has its time and place).
I also want to look professional even though I love to rock my running shoes and comfy tights. Recently, I have been stopped on the streets and asked about the outfits I’m wearing for work. So fun fact, for work, I wear customized clothes designed and tailored by my great friend Ed Besong, a New York city-based bespoke clothier. I used to have a hard time finding the perfect fitting pants as a runner with strong legs. With EdBesong, I am able to look professional while being comfortable in clothing that is affordable and tailored personally for my body build and style. Ed’s clothing is tailored in Cameroon, West Africa, and is delivered within 2 weeks in the US. Also, check out my friends from Momentum and their great ways how to balance life and their business.
If you are able to be 100% professional at work and won’t let anything such as training or your personal life distract you, you’re able to incorporate this professionalism into your training.
If you want to get the best out of life, you need to devote enough time to each pursuit. Balancing work, life, and running requires a lot of discipline. In order to be ready for whatever my day throws at me, I do little things like meal prep, prepare to-do-lists, and organize my calendar ahead of time.
This goes back to sticking to my routine in order to find the perfect balance in working full-time, training and family. If you’re struggling to find time to prep your meals, choose a designated time for this task – maybe use your Sunday nights to do so. I spend two hours in the kitchen every Sunday at a specific time to get my meals ready for the week. This allows me to feel ready throughout the week for my training, meetings, and everything in-between, without skipping meals or even eating unhealthy food.
Recovery has to be done right
As an athlete, there are three things that are at the heart of recovery: Sleep, stretching, and the correct type of fuel. Recovery is part of my 4 secrets to balance work, life and running because it keeps me healthy and on track with my workouts.
Also, during my time off, I enjoy spending time with my family, especially my dog. I know that most of us have a hard time, squeezing in proper recoveries such as a good stretch or even a day off. The “Never Stop” mentality can be tricky nowadays. I came to the realization that I evolve and grow the most during my time off. I just recently started a guided meditation class to master my recovery even more. Recovery has to be done right and has to be taken seriously to perform at our best.
I hope that my advice will help you balance work, life, and running better in the future. If you have any questions or are looking for a connection to my friend Ed Besong for a beautiful outfit tailored just for you, let me know and I will connect you with him.