My check-in today with my coach was all about how I’m sitting squarely in a rough patch with my training. I was traveling to Boston for four days last weekend and I leave for a week in Boulder this Thursday. And somewhere in the three days between trips, I have to actually get some work done. So many things to do and so little time.

Of course, as the week started, I had lofty goals of getting my prescribed workouts in and wrapping up my work in this three-day period. I was dead-set on making that happen …

Until I woke up yesterday (Monday) and was promptly sucked into work which took over my entire day. There was simply no way that I could break away from work – it was critical, time-sensitive stuff that could not wait. Even if I did make it to the gym, I would have been so stressed and distracted that I wouldn’t have been present for my training.

So I skipped it. I felt the pressure of knowing that there’s another trip coming so I need to take advantage of the training time I have now, but some days you just can’t worry about that stuff. Your sanity has to come first.

So this week, for #twothingstuesday, I’m sharing the two ways I keep myself from falling off the wagon while going through an abnormally busy stretch.

(1) Scale back as needed but keep showing up as much as possible. You have to be gentle with yourself. When your central nervous system is all jacked up on stress and lethargic from lack of sleep, often the last thing it needs is for you to pile on more stress. Perhaps scaling the intensity for a day is the better option. And don’t be afraid to use a day to GSD so that you can be clear-headed tomorrow so you can jump right back in. Sometimes you gotta take what you can get but the point is to be intentional about it. Also, never just throw in the towel on a whole week just because it doesn’t work out for a day or two. Yesterday I couldn’t make it happen but today I did.

(2) Make sure the “temporary” remains temporary. Look, you’ve gotta be real here. If what’s keeping you from your workouts (and any other form of self-care for that matter) is a chronic and habitual thing, that’s a whole other issue. What I’m talking about here is looking at a week or two in particular that are insane and totally outside the norm for you through the lens of realism. There is an end date — and you need to keep it that way. It becomes a lot easier to be gentle with yourself when you know it’s just a temporary phase. The worst thing you can do for yourself in the long-term is to let a temporary derailment drag out forever. When the rough patch is over and things start heading in the direction of back to normal, get back to it.

Rough patches are a normal part of life. Expect them to come. Anticipate them when you can. Get through them. And, above all else, move past them.

What are some of the ways that you navigate these rough times?

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