In this episode I explore why planning your day can be the most powerful action you do to help your training, consistency and, ultimately, your hiking.
Introduction to the importance of planning your day
[0:00] All right, hello, hello, ladies and gentlemen. So in today's episode, we are going through episode number seven of this 20-episode miniseries, 20 Lessons Through 20 Weeks of Training.
And today, we are talking all about the importance of planning your day.
So let me give you the story, where this came about, where this was inspired.
Now, during the training process that I was going through, those 20 weeks of training, I realized really quickly that there was a lot of stuff I needed to fit into my week.
[0:29] I knew you know we had our morning sessions we were training five mornings a week um every single week um and I knew we were going to be doing those sessions and that was kind of would teach us what we needed and all of this but I know personally for myself going into this process that I'm a slow learner I don't pick up exercises and movements particularly quickly I'm not super coordinated I know I need to practice things over and over and over again to get competent at it physically.
That may sound funny saying, hey, I'm a personal trainer. Hey, I've been doing this my whole life. Hey, this is my job. But that's the truth.
I'm not quick at picking things up. I know that about myself.
And I knew through the training process from the very get-go that I was going to need more than just the bare minimum.
And on top of what we were doing in the gym specifically with the sessions, I knew I needed to fit in a bunch of stuff into my week to help.
[1:22] I knew I was going going to need opportunities to practice the skills we learn.
I knew I needed to improve my cardio because I wasn't in great shape at the start.
I knew I needed to get fit so I could get through the sessions and be comfortable and not just be absolutely exhausted all the time.
I knew I needed more strength to help protect my body from pain and injury and actually get strong.
I knew for myself I was realizing, oh my gosh, my memory and my attention span sucks.
For whatever reason, just in that environment. I was struggling to pay attention.
So I was like, look, I'm going to start fitting in some brain games and maybe that will help.
I knew I needed to fit in some stretching to improve my mobility in certain areas so I could reach different positions and not be uncomfortable.
[2:04] Now that was just specifically for the training. I knew I needed to fit that stuff into my week.
On top of that, you know, I was also going through a personal journey where I was wanting to write every day, which is completely unrelated to the training, completely unrelated to Summit Strength, but I purely just had a goal of creative writing every day.
On top of that, had. I needed to make sure that I was still running my business and making sure everything's moving forward with the countless other things that I was looking after my clients.
On top of that, I wanted to make sure, okay, you know what? Ali, my wife, was going through a really tough period of work.
And I was like, look, I need to make sure that I'm kind of taking care of certain things in the house and make sure that I'm on top of the cooking, on top of the groceries.
Not that I was doing all of it or anything like that, but I was doing a decent share during that And I knew all of this stuff had to fit in my week and every single day.
Overcoming overwhelm through daily planning and scheduling
[2:52] And in all honesty, it was a bit overwhelming because there was a lot of stuff I needed to fit in.
And I quickly, quickly realized that, look, if I just woke up in the morning and I was like, look, I'm just going to fit in things where I can, take the day as it comes, just fit in things where I have moments, whatever it may be.
I realized really quickly that just was not going to work. It was just too airy-fairy, had too many things to fit in. I just didn't need more structure.
[3:14] And I realized pretty quickly that that wasn't going to work.
So I set myself the task that I I was going to plan every single day.
I was going to use planning, use my calendar as a strategic resource and make sure I had a structure in my day and in my week to fit things in.
So ultimately, this is what I did. Every morning, the first things my morning was simple.
I knew I was going to be at the gym every single morning, Monday to Friday.
That was easy. So that was already locked in.
And then I also knew pretty much from the only time I was going to fit in my own creative writing, which I wanted to do, was pretty much right after that.
So I knew every every single morning, I would go to the gym, I'd come home, have a shower, have brekkie, and then do 20 minutes of riding.
That was the start of my day. That was non-negotiable. So I knew every single day that was going to be the same.
[3:58] But then the next step in my day, I was like, look, then I have a little gap between when I start work and obviously get into things.
So I said, look, at that time, and I think it was like 8am or something like that, I would sit down, I'll look at my calendar for the day, see what appointments are hand, see what meetings are hand, see what other things were coming up and plan out the rest of my day.
I'd plan out exactly when I I did my messages, responding to my clients, when I created content, the podcast, well, not that I was doing the podcast during that time, but my other content, this, when I was going to train, when I was going to go to the gym, or when I was going to train at home, or when I was going to stretching, when I was going to eat, when I was going to relax, when I was going to cook dinner, and all of that.
And I would book out all of these times in my day, and I would treat them as appointments. I was like, this is the time I'm going to spend on this task.
This is the time I'm going to do this. This is the time I'm going to do train.
[4:46] And on top of that, I wasn't just blocking things out, but I knew exactly what I was going to do.
I was like, I know exactly what I'm going to do in these training sessions.
It's not turn up to the gym and then make a decision.
It's like, you know what, today I'm going to do a strength session and this is the strength session I'm going to do.
Or today I'm going to do a cardio session and this is one. Or maybe I'm going to stretch and I'm going to do these stretches or whatever may be.
I knew exactly what clothes or equipment I had to organize and all of that.
The same thing if I knew I needed a break. If I was was like look this today's going to be huge I need a bit of a break in here I was like look, I'm going to block out this time I'm going to like read or I'm going to like go for a walk or whatever it may be and I planned that out and ultimately this gave me a lot of power because on the days when I was super busy from work I could plan to do the bare minimum I'll say you know what I've got a massive day-to-day back-to-back with meetings I can only fit in like a tiny session here and there whatever may be or on the days I had more time I could say you know what I'm going going to fit all this in.
And I did this every single working day. So Monday to Friday, And it made a major, major, major difference for me, both being able to fit everything in that I wanted, but also taking out that stress, taking out that bit of overwhelm, and giving me structure.
[5:54] Now, for that's for me. That's exactly what I did to kind of fit in everything I need.
But for hikers, literally, I say this every single week to different one of my clients. I advocate it for anyone who's going through a training process.
Too many people think, look, I'm just going to try and I will just train sometime during the day.
I'll fit it in where I can. I'll fit it in after to work. I'll fit it in before work.
I'll do it at lunch or whatever it may be. But they just think that, and that's all.
The Pitfalls of Airy-Fairy Planning
[6:19] Or maybe at the start of the week, they're like, oh, maybe I'll train one of the weight days or whatever it may be.
But in all honesty, this type of airy-fairy planning, it rarely, rarely, rarely works. It takes a certain type of person to fit that in.
But in all honesty, if you're working a full-time job, if you're trying to fit in a full training process, if you're trying to live a life around that, you need to be a bit more structured.
Plan your day. It just goes so, so, so far.
Set a designated time every single day. It's the same time every single day where you'll just spend 10 minutes planning out your day.
For me, this worked really, really well around that 8 a.m. in the morning after I'd done those first tasks that were the same every single day.
For some people, it might be the first thing you do when you wake up.
You wake up, you have a coffee, let the dog out to go to the toilet or whatever it may be, and then you sit down and do your 10 minutes.
For others, it might be at the end of a working day. You may plan the day ahead for the next day. You clock off at 5pm or whatever time it may be.
You're like, you know what, I'm going to get home. It's going to be really busy.
Kids, family, whatever it may be.
So before you go home, you sit down with your calendar, plan out the next day.
Or it might be just after dinner or before you go to bed or whatever it may be.
Whatever works for you, whatever you think you can do consistently, it goes such a long way.
Consistency and the Importance of Planning
[7:30] Look at your calendar, plan your sessions, have a set structure.
Yes, it'll probably change. Yes, will things come up? But if you can have 90% of the the time following this plan. It just goes such a long way.
[7:42] I always say planning to plan, not just going in with a plan, not just doing a bit of planning, but planning when you're going to do the planning.
That in itself can go a long way as well.
[7:52] So my message to you today, if you're a hiker who lives a busy life and you're trying to fit in your training around that, if you aren't quite as consistent that you want to be, maybe you get a bit overwhelmed trying to fit everything in or whatever it may be. Plan it.
Put some structure in today. Use that calendar. It goes such a long way.
And I honestly believe it's one of the most powerful things any hiker can do to help their training.
So with that being said, I hope this makes sense. I hope it helps a few people and I hope you've enjoyed today.
So thank you so much for listening and we'll talk to you very, very soon. Bye.
Rowan is a personal trainer who specialises in training for hiking, trekkers and mountaineers for their bucket list adventures.
Summit Strength is a personal training for hiking service created specifically to help hikers have the best chance of a safe, enjoyable and successful adventure.