Flexibly organized

Today is back to school, which means a little bit of this…

A whole lotta’ this…

And much less this…

File shot from freshman year, but you get the point...

Basically, it isn’t the makings of an inherently healthy lifestyle. But a good challenge has never stopped me before (I have a few scars to prove that point).

College has taught me a thing or two beyond the limits of textbooks and classrooms. Thanks to late nights, early mornings and incessantly demanding professors, I’ve learned to be both organized and flexible.

No, those things don’t contradict each other.

Since I’ve also discovered that I learn best by example, here are a few examples for you.

Meals

Organized: I make batches of roasted veggies, black bean burgers and hummus on Sunday, for easy assembly through the week. Also, I’m usually on campus from before breakfast until nearly dinner. I’ve found that it helps for me to pack my meals the night before, group them together in the fridge and then simply grab to go when I am incoherent at 6 a.m.

Consumed: 1/3 C oats, 1/3 C soy milk, 1/2 t chia seeds, 1 banana, vanilla and cinnamon all mixed together and placed in fridge overnight. Topped in the morning with Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter.

Flexible: I strive to follow the principles of “Intuitive Eating.” So, if noon rolls around and I can’t stand the thought of eating what I had packed the night before, I listen to my stomach. I like to keep a stash of granola bars, such as Larabars, and homemade trail mix. I also have some money that I can use around campus at any one of the salad bars or sandwich locations.

Workouts

Organized: Right now, I am training for a half-marathon. This means that I have a mindless, day-by-day guide as to what my workouts should be. For example, I know that today I have to run 3.5 miles and do strength training. Generally, I like to block out my mornings for workouts, so that I have that crossed off my list before the day even starts.

Post-Pilates this morning. Showered and ready to go, fresh from the Recreation Center.

Flexible: I work in the news business. So, for as much as I plan out my days, I also have to be prepared for the unexpected. Workouts are a big priority for me, but I know that if I miss a day, it won’t ruin all my training. Likewise, I like to live actively, by walking to campus and playing games with friends. That way, I kill two birds with one stone.

Socializing

Organized: Time with friends keeps me sane through the year. Meals are a great time to catch-up and slow down. Many of my friends are on campus during the day, so it’s easy to meet up for lunch in between classes. Also, my boyfriend, Dan, and I make a joke of “coordinating” our schedules. We figure out when we are both available to spend time together.

Lunch with Dan.

Flexible: I am a student, so school takes precedence throughout the week. Sometimes it’s just best to kill two birds with one stone by either working out with friends or having study sessions. It may not be as much fun as going out, but it still gives me my socializing fix.

Question: What tips do you have for staying organized and flexible throughout a crazy life?

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6 responses to “Flexibly organized

  • Katie

    I’m the same way! I love to stay organized but I don’t like to be too stressed so I stay relaxed and flexible. I don’t get stressed out hardly ever probably just because I’m a go-with-the-flow kind of girl.

  • Errign

    I do a lot of the same things as you – packing lunches, keeping track of my schedule (but willing to flex it a little), and getting my sweat on!

    I go back to school in 2 weeks – can’t say I’m very excited but I am ready to be back into a set routine!

  • Jessica @ lacesandlattes

    I really liked this post. I am headed back to university in a few weeks as well and I definately have the same problem with balancing a busy schedule.
    You have a lot of great advice. One thing I try to do is, as Katie said, not get too caught up in my schedule. I don’t force myself to have a morning workout if the afternoon will work better or need to eat in a certain time slot. Letting life happen is often less stressful then strict organization for me.

    • pursuitofhealthfulness

      So true. I’ve gotten into trouble before when I got too rigid with my “rules” for myself. Now, I’ve learned it’s best to eat when I’m hungry, stop when I’m full, workout when I can and generally enjoy the ride!

  • Saturday in the park «

    […] like to devote time each weekend to pre-week food preparation as part of my “flexibly organized” plan. This week, I roasted some tofu (which I prefer cold) and chopped up vegetables for […]

  • Carrie (Love Healthy Living)

    Great tips! I have trouble planning for a week worth’s of events but I definitely plan my meals about 2 days in advance. I take my workouts on a day by day basis because I’m really trying to listen to my body as far as exercise goes. 🙂

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