By: Emma Decker

I’ll be the first to tell you getting into shape while working 8+ hours a day is hard.  Of course it is.  But I refuse to believe that it’s impossible.  It’s just challenging enough to make it worth pursuing.  

You don’t need to drink nothing but wheatgrass juice for three weeks straight.

You don’t need to start training for the marathon you’ve never dreamed of running starting tomorrow at six am.

You don’t need to make yourself pick up heavy things until your brain hurts.

You need to figure out what works for you.  And I know there are a million and twelve different sources with medical studies and facts and science telling you that you should only work out in the morning or you should only run if it’s in high intensity intervals or you should try subsisting on nothing but 30 bananas a day (that’s a real thing that I would not even kind of recommend doing).

I can’t tell you what’s going to work for you.  No one can.  Everybody reacts differently to diet, and exercise, and amounts of sleep and amounts of sunlight and amounts of sitting.  I can only tell you what works for me.  And that’s important—the best way to figure out what works for you is to try things that worked for other people.  And when they fail, try things that worked for other people.  And eventually something will work.

Try something new.  If you’re new to Southern California, or you’re new to working out, or you’re tiring of your old workout, commit to trying something new at least a few times a month.  One of the amazing things about this part of the country is that fitness is so incredibly accessible.  Take a boxing class, or zumba, or spinning or bootcamp.  Run a tough mudder or walk an obstacle course or try out a cool themed 5k.  Hike a mountain, walk the bay, swim in the ocean.  Find something you look forward to doing, and you’ll be that much more likely to do it.  Logic.

I personally have tried waking up at 5am to run before work and it sucked and I hated it.  And if that works for you I admire you and your ability to not toss your alarm clock out of your window Bradley Cooper-style when it wakes you up.  

Instead, I do what some of the studies out there tell you not to do—I wait until after work.  I fight traffic to get to my gym or I run an hour before bed and then shower.  And sometimes I talk myself out of it before I get there, but more often I don’t.  And I’m way more likely to work out in the afternoon, contrary to what many experts say, than if I by some miracle manage to wake up three hours before the sun rises.

Above anything else, just remember, “Nothing is impossible.  The very word itself says ‘of course there’s a twenty-something writing a blog post that includes an Audrey Hepburn quote.’” –Audrey Hepburn