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April 04, 2012



I love the idea of planning my day around mt natural energy levels, but my day isn't very flexibile so I am looking for suggestions.

I am a mom of two 2nd graders and a middle school teacher, not to mention a wife, daughter, friend, and volunteer. I was lucky to work out a part-time teaching assignment this year (I would do it forever....), but next year my position will be full time again. I exercise in the morning, when my local gym offers great classes and when my running partners (also busy moms) are available. Some afternoons I have meetings or need to get the kids to music lessons or a sports practice. Once everyone is in bed, I need to correct assignments. I often wonder how to better fit in the Healthy Mind Platter and the connecting/relaxing time mentioned in today's post. I am exhausted each evening. What's a busy girl to do?

Janet N.

I've always considered myself a night person; worked nights all thru college and loved it, so the energy map is not so true for me. I work "regular" daytime hours now, but thankfully my schedule is quite flexible. The last thing I want to do at 7-9 AM is connect with anyone! Just leave me be to wake up and get ready for my day. No TV or radio at that time, just peace and quiet. I'll connect in the evening. I've tried going to the gym at 5 AM for a spin class and found that it left me exhausted and listless all day. I'd say I'm most productive between 11 AM and 8 PM and I love going to the gym after work. Honestly, to get the most out of my day, I make a concentrated effort to get 8 hours of sleep at night. And recently, I purchased a sleep mask that has really improved the quality of my sleep. I never would have believed that one!

I love reading your posts and am sure your upcoming presentation will be great! Enjoy Utah - I did a bike trip there and the scenery is breathtaking. I hope you'll be able to get out and do some hiking. Here's a good excuse: April 21-29 is National Park Week and admission to all 397 national parks is FREE! When it comes to parks, Utah has some real beauties!


Oh I love this article! I WISH that everyone in this country could take on the siesta. I need one desperately come 3pm, but it's near impossible with the work I do. But will definitely try the breathing exercises for my 30 minute break! Thanks :)


Interesting. I feel best when I awake between 7 - 7:30 am, move around, garden, swim, and then around 10 - 11 am start working (technical writing/instructional design). My brain really gets going mid-day to late afternoon, and if I'm really engaged I can work into the evening. I'm not much of a socializer and never desire phone conversation, and I like a LOT of solitude. BUT, my work schedule is not flexible, and I have a very long commute, so I just have to try to swim at 6am so I can get to work on time and get my brain in gear by 9 am. Bleah. I get home around 7 pm and have a quick dinner then hit the books (I'm also in school) and try to at least be lying down by 11 pm. Maybe one day I'll be able to fashion a better schedule, but for now, given the ravages of the recession, I'm glad to have any job no matter what the commute!

The Healthy Librarian

@Becky: All rules are off when the kids are in the nest--there are lessons & practices & activities etc to drive them to--then throw working full-time into the mix & lesson plans--OMG! craziness. I think back to those days & wonder how I did it all--plus, older, parents with medical issues. That said, if there's ever any way to work around the constraints--to think "out of the box" & maybe exercise while the kids are at an afternoon practice or lesson--or swapping out a lesson planning session at work for exercise---or cooking in big batches so there's less prep time after work--try & experiment--you'll know best. Or going to sleep earlier--so you can get up before the kids are up to either exercise or have alone time or whatever. It's more about looking for ways to make your day work better for you--and NOT SKIMPING ON SLEEP. Because everything gets done faster, better, & more easily with 8 hours of good sleep.

@Janet N: Totally with you about the sleep! But, gosh darn it--it's so hard to make myself get to bed early enough to get those 8 hours. BUT--if I work-out at 6 PM--by 10 PM I'm so ready for bed--which is great! Oh yes we're going to Zion, Bryce, & Capitol Reef!! Never been. Can't wait! Thank for the tip about the free admission.

@Jessi: Let's hear it for the afternoon siesta. Wouldn't that be fabulous?

@Anne: I hear you. Sounds like you figured out something that's working for you--and it certainly must, if you fit all that in, along with a long commute & going to school. Studying after 8 pm sounds tough. I've got a long commute, too--and since it's not on the highway, I look forward to it as a mental break. Totally get the solitude part--if I don't have enough--I get very crabby!


Hmm this is interesting. Siesta time seems particularly accurate. Thank you for taking the time to blog! I follow the same guidelines from Esselstyn and so it is nice to have another recipe resource :)

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