My Reading Is Being Sabotaged… By My Fitness!

2015-Discussion-ChallengeIt’s a subject that rears it’s ugly head frequently in the book blogging community – how on earth do we find the time to work, go to school, have families, read, blog, catch up on other blogs we follow, have social lives, and do other things like eat and breathe? Reading, blogging, and trying to have a life is hard, and I’ve only gone and made it even harder for myself…

One weekday morning, around two months ago, I woke up for work and very randomly decided that after work, I would go to the gym. This may not be that surprising for a lot of people, but for me, it was incredibly rare. For the majority of my life I’ve been practically allergic to exercise, so why the sudden change?

I think it started a couple of months ago, when I took part in Pretty Muddy for Cancer Research UK, which consists of a 5K run, in mud, with various obstacles to overcome throughout the course – think massive blow up water slides, mud pits, and climbing frames, and you’ll get the idea. I entered with a group of friends, and we did zero training before the event. Our rationale was that we’d (power) walk it if we had to, but it was for a good cause and it would be a bit of “craic” (translation – good fun).

Pretty Muddy 5K 2015

It was crazy good fun. A local radio station were playing loud music and getting the crowd pumped up, and there was a ton of atmosphere and buzz… true, I could only run for 2K out of the 5… But I did finish! By the end I was a knock-knee’d mess, but I felt like I’d accomplished something, and it felt good. 

Fast forward a few weeks, and my car broke down, which *shock, horror* meant I had to walk to the local shop (actually, my exhaust fell off, but same difference). I’m 25 years of age, I should be fit and healthy, I should be in my prime! But that walk winded me, and I think that was the moment when I decided something had to change…

I’m BIG into working out my “brain muscles” – reading, writing, learning, gaining qualifications – I’m a certified Geek, but I’ve never been remotely interested in working out any other muscles. Unfortunately, the majority of my work and hobbies require long periods of time sitting on my butt, which isn’t exactly conducive to improving fitness levels. Any mediocre attempts at fitness in the past have all been related to trying to lose weight, which usually means you’re all GO for the first few weeks, but then quickly lose interest. THIS time, I wanted to exercise to get fitter. I wanted to get stronger, and yes getting leaner at the same time wouldn’t hurt. I wanted to get those endorphins that everyone keeps talking about!

So, I joined my local female-only gym, and I’ve been going a minimum of three times a week for the past 8 weeks (and counting). I’m doing intermediate spin classes. I’m discovering and building muscles I didn’t know I had. I’m getting hooked. I definitely think that if in another 8 weeks I can do an advanced spin class without falling over, I’ll be ready for The Hunger Games.

While this is all great news for my health and fitness, I’m sad to say it’s terrible news for reading and blogging. Going to the gym takes time, especially whenever you go to scheduled evening classes (my typical reading and blogging time), and when washing and drying your hair takes an hour, it just gets problematic. I’m writing this at 10.30PM with wet hair from the shower I had at 9.00PM… Have no fear! I don’t plan on going anywhere, I’ll continue to read and blog in my little corner of the Internet, but you may see just a little bit less of me… And with all of this exercise, I mean that literally 😉

Do any of you have a fitness routine, and does it impact how you manage your time? How do you all generally fit in your reading and blogging? Let me know in the comments!

About Rachel

Avid reader & #bookblogger. Lover of all things business. A fan of drinks & dancing. Ever optimistic. Feminist.

24 Responses

  1. Well done you! Exercise is something I need to do more of (although I class running around after twins as exercise!) but like you say, where do we find the time? It’s all a balancing act, but I hope you’re enjoying whatever you do!


  2. Congrats on your mud run!! We have lots of similar things in my area and they always look like such fun afterwards! Do you know about the color runs where they throw colored cornstarch on you as you run by?

    Also congrats on sticking with spinning for so long! Spinning always sounds like fun but also like I’d get too tired halfway through BUT I haven’t ever tried it. I’d like to join a class but I don’t know where to go. I wish I knew of a female-only gym near me.

    I think it’s important to balance your life with blogging, so if exercising makes you feel and look better then it’s okay for you to not be around as much! Do what makes you happy! 🙂


  3. The only fitness I did in the last months was twice a week 2 hours of Aikido in the evening. Untill term’s end I had the same hair problems as you. But It is positive for my reading and blogging for afterwards we sometimes talk a lot with each other – especially about books 😉


  4. Brandie

    You know you’re speaking my language with this post, right? I love it. 😉 I love that you have gotten the fitness itch! I was right there with you less than a year ago! I remember HATING exercise, but one time running, and I was hooked. Now I’m obsessed with getting my steps in every day and running as much as I can, and it feels good. But, I completely understand the dilemma of it taking away from reading and blogging time. My reading and blogging has suffered. I used to catch up on blogging over my lunch breaks, but now I’m walking over lunch. If I walk on the treadmill, I do read for that hour – so that’s a way to get in some reading time! Also, audio books?? While you spin or do other cardio? Lots of people listen to audio books while they work out, and I think that’s a great way to get in some reading time. You know that I have helped my situation by getting up before dawn to work out, but I know that’s not an option for you, at least not yet. But, after awhile it may be worth trying, because it’s a great way to start the day. 😉

    Unfortunately, some hobbies will just have to be put on the back burner on the days you’re at the gym, but really – that’s okay! You’re doing this for you! You’re getting fit and healthy and that’s more important. If you blog a little less, it’s a good price to pay to feel good and live longer. I am definitely reading less than I used to, but I’m making up for it in how good I feel, so I see that as a good thing. Keep up the good work, Rach!! xx


  5. Cait @ Paper Fury

    I do love exercise. I ALMOST ALWAYS HAVE! 😀 But yes it can take up quite a bit of time, right?!? I go for a short run in the morning before 7am and then a 40min walk in the afternoon…aaaand, I listen to audio books instead of music. It works so well! I could totally walk FOREVER while listening to an audio.


  6. Exercising…is something I need to do. I lead a pretty sedentary lifestyle. Like, I’m pretty much a rock. I’ve contemplated signing up for some kind of class because motivation is something I need a lot of. Accountability too. I’ve tried exercising on my own, but fall off my routine in less than two weeks. I would sacrifice some blogging/reading hours if it meant sticking to a routine that would keep my healthy.


  7. It’s a fact of blogging that we need to have a life too, my attempt at having a life ends up being me playing video games in my pyjamas, but each to their own. I have to say I am probably you before the gym, I am allergic to exercise. I can walk to the bus stop, if I miss a bus I am willing and able to walk without wanting to collapse at the end and that is how I judge my fitness. Would I want to lose a bit of weight? Who doesn’t, I am definitely getting a bit doughier as I get older, but when it starts to bother me I will take action.

    It sucks that you’ve lost a lot of your blogging and reading time, but if you’re enjoying what you’re doing instead then that’s all that matters. And hey, you could always try audiobooks when you’re at the gym, so at least you’re getting some book time in. You can’t complain about sacrificing blogging time for exercise because at least it’s something that’s good for you, I wish I could say the same thing but the thought of going to the gym does terrify me slightly. I mean to willingly go and sweat in front of other people sounds awful! Who knows, I may end up changing my tune one day.


  8. This! So much this! I’m exactly the same, I’ve been on an exercise buzz for most of the year and it really impacts on my blogging. I find by the time I get home from the gym, all I want to do is go to bed with my book. And so my blogging rarely happens during the week. I do preschedule though at the weekends and that is a life saver for me.

    I find that exercising just for all the positive things it brings to our lives is the best, focusing on weight loss just becomes all about the scales and the day the scales don’t reflect what I want to see used to be the beginning of the end for me. Now I rarely weigh myself but use my mood and energy levels to chart my progress.

    But I’m injured at the moment with achilles tendonitis so I’ve lots of time for blogging! I miss my walk/running and can’t wait to get back to it properly.


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