Dude, I almost fell into a trap that gets nearly all of us at one point or another.

I almost didn’t check in and report my weekly “progress.”

Because … well, here’s the thing: get a group of fitness coaches together and most of them will have the same complaint about their clients.

They only check in when things are going well.

Because otherwise, they feel too guilty to ‘fess up to their alleged failure.

Guess what?

 I didn’t stick with my plan this week. But I’m bucking the trend and reporting in anyway. Yay, me!

Here’s what happened.

The Cat Sat on My Keyboard

I went into this week feeling great. The week before, I was on-track: my training was going well and while I wasn’t “perfect” with my nutrition, I got in all my veggies and other good stuff. (What is “perfect” nutrition, anyway? If you ask me, “perfect” is an eating disorder, but that’s another post for another day.)

Anyway, this week, it was like: “Workout? What’s a workout?”

I didn’t log a single workout session. And my diet wasn’t stellar, either.

It’s not like I sat on the couch bingeing on Netflix, because I got a lot of other stuff done, all of which I’m pretty happy about and that needed to happen.

For instance, for about two years now I’ve

  1. hated the way my kitchen table ate up all the space in my kitchen and
  2. disliked how small my computer desk(s) are.

So, in a move that caused a massive avalanche of furniture rearranging that affected every room in my place, I made my kitchen table my desk. Bonus: I now can write either standing up or sitting. 

Old desk situation:

Cluttered, tiny, out-of-control work area.


So, it’s been a week of dealing with stuff like that. Good, but time-consuming.

Leaking Buckets

And related to all of that, the other day I was listening to a podcast that gave me about a dozen a-has. Now, I haven’t (yet) read the book they talk about in the podcast (How to Live a Good Life by Jonathan Fields), but the content really resonated with me.

They didn’t say this in the podcast, but the “how to live a good life” concept is kind of based on a simplified version of the “wheel of life” template that’s used a lot in life/wellness coaching.

The “wheel” has 8 areas that some coaches believe need attention in order for us to feel balanced and fulfilled: career, money, health, significant other, friends and family, personal growth, fun and recreation, and home/physical environment.

That’s a lot of areas to juggle, huh? Just thinking about it stresses me out.

But Fields uses a bucket metaphor – and he narrows down the number of areas to a more manageable three:

  • Vitality (mind and body health)
  • Connection (relationships)
  • Contribution (how you use your strengths, etc., to serve the world, maybe through your work, maybe through other kinds of service) 

A lot of times, we get out of whack because we pay too much attention to one and not any attention to another.

But the thing is, all those buckets need a little attention because they all have some leaks. You can’t just fill one up and be done with it.

And if one bucket goes empty, you’re in big trouble.

The Vitality Bucket

So, it occurred to me as I stood to write this (thank you, new table-desk!) I need to spend some more real time on the vitality bucket. And maybe I have to do it in a completely new way, with a new approach.

Do you do this? (It’s from the podcast.)

We love to pretend that everything’s okay. If we’re working too hard, we tell ourselves that we’ll sleep when we die. If we’re living on a steady diet of junk food and sitting at a desk for fourteen hours a day, we tell ourselves we’ll take better care of our health when it becomes an issue.

As I’ve written about ad nauseam, it’s been a year of changes for me, and so it’s kind of natural something would get neglected. But how (not) ironic is it that I feel like my own VITALITY bucket is almost empty?

Psst: personal trainers and fitness coaches put their own vitality at risk on a regular basis if they’re not careful. It’s part of the job. And that, too, is another post for another day.

Now, it’s time to give myself the errant-client coaching talk.

The cats still want to take over my desk. But now we can share.

Here’s the Fix

  1. Remember: if I’m not good to myself, I’m no good for anyone else.
  2. Winging it doesn’t work. Make an actual plan for this week, both in terms of food and workouts.
  3. Time block! Go back to my old routine of setting aside chunks of time each day to devote to specific tasks.
  4. And when I’m tempted to skip something because I think I don’t have time or it’s not worth it, refer back to item 1 on this list.

Here’s to a fit week, everyone!

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