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Lui
December 9th, 2011, 09:05 PM
How do others here get to do their work and good workouts at the same time? I usually train about 4000 yards a day but at the moment I have too much work where I need to concentrate. I often work until early in the morning. I work in animation so my work is always sitting down at my animation desk and computer.
I have to admit that I have a lot of work and if I'd do my swimming now I would get too tired at some point, so I took a break from swimming(and gained 10 lbs during this time:( )
I know I'll lose the weight as soon as I hit the pool again but also I will get less work done because I'll be drained.

How do others do it?

Celestial
December 9th, 2011, 09:40 PM
My son works in animation too, and his schedule has always been crazy. Luckily he is now a contractor for Uncle Sam & has more regular hours, but his trick was to do some sort of exercise three times a day - some drylands before work, up & down the stairs at lunch, and then a solid workout after work, in the evenings. But he is single. And not a swimmer.
I'm a medical sort & have very long hours once I show up - so I don't usually get a lunch & when I'm off, the pools are closed. So, I workout at 5 or 5:30 in the morning. When I was doing odd shifts, sometimes I would workout at lunch or in the evening, but always first thing after waking, so I couldn't put it off. I am way too old & tired to be doing workout once I get home in the evenings (or mornings, depending on the day). You need to find a pool and hopefully a workout group that has workouts at lots of different times of the day & then plan your life around your swimming. Make the swimming a priority, and you'll always find time to do it.

jaadams1
December 9th, 2011, 10:01 PM
& then plan your life around your swimming. Make the swimming a priority, and you'll always find time to do it

I like it! I'm basically this way now. I actually talked my boss into starting me 30 minutes later at work (which allows me to get a full hour of swimming in the morning), and then rush straight to work. :) If I swim in the evenings, I'll do it while my kids are at swim lessons, or (thankfully I have a live-in mother-in-law who can watch my kids for an hour or so on other evenings.

Lui
December 9th, 2011, 10:21 PM
Make the swimming a priority, and you'll always find time to do it.

Don't get me wrong, I've always done that. I worked on numerous TV series and feature movies and always kept up my swimming 5 days a week. When I worked on a major feature movie once that lasted for a year I always went swimming after work around 9pm.
Now I'm working for an animation company(free-lance at home) and doing my own animated short films on the side which often has me working 12 hours a day, often until 4-5 in the morning.
To get that extra concentration I am purposely not going swimming because I know I won't be as crisp to do my work with the same concentration, if you know what I mean. It's kinda a catch-22 situation: if I work out I will be generally fitter but will always feel drained from the workout at some point of the day and less concentrated for my work, and if I don't work out, I gain weight, feel unfit, get back pain from too much sitting, feel sluggish but I have more concentration for my work.

I don't know if anyone can relate.

__steve__
December 9th, 2011, 11:34 PM
500 yard swim is much better than not swimming. Take a 2 minute break every hour. Each hour can be 2 minutes of plank, pushups, situps, or whatever. Doing this might even sharpen productivity. Try to avoid sitting there too much without a brief break. Also, Eat vegetables, and protein drinks.

pwb
December 10th, 2011, 01:15 AM
Lui,

I think many of us can relate as we deal with a similar balancing act. For me, I find myself most productive on the days I swim first thing in the morning. Fitter = more focus, for me, at least.

KatieK
December 10th, 2011, 08:46 AM
When I get really drained from swimming, it's usually because I'm not eating enough. It helps to eat a gel right before I get in and drink a chocolate milk after I get out. I also drink water mixed with a little juice while I'm swimming--the extra electrolytes also help me from getting too tired afterward.

Lui
December 10th, 2011, 10:30 AM
500 yard swim is much better than not swimming. Take a 2 minute break every hour. Each hour can be 2 minutes of plank, pushups, situps, or whatever. Doing this might even sharpen productivity. Try to avoid sitting there too much without a brief break. Also, Eat vegetables, and protein drinks.

I probably eat healthier than 99,999% of the population:D I eat tons of veggies, fish with omega 3 fatty acids, fruit, whole grains, legumes, seeds, nuts, lean meat but no protein shakes. I tried protein shakes in the past and it never made me feel fitter. I rely on real food.
I would believe that everybody feels a bit tired after a good work out. Also, I usually swim 3000-4000 yards. 500 yards is nothing. I have a road bike and cycle a bit each day but at the moment not much. Believe me, it's not the lack of nutrition or anything else. Swimming a decent work out costs energy and if you want to work mentally for about 12 hours it will effect you. I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels this. It's not like I feel totally wrecked, it's just that I don't feel mentally crisp for a long period of time. I'm just referring to my work situation at the moment. Like I said, I worked on various productions during the last 20 years of my career and always kept up my swimming.
I was wondering if others take a break if they have too much work on their plate too.

I should at least do bodyweight exercises again. I've done them for years(pushups, pullups, plank, superman, dips, burpees, Vups, squads etc). I also want to add that I don't feel tired if I don't work out. I can work highly concentrated for 12 hours straight(with breaks to eat inbetween).

Lump
December 10th, 2011, 11:07 AM
I've been in the opposite mode. I'm currently looking for FT work and have been for quite a while now. However I've kept swimming and training. But since LC Nats I have just lost the will to keep training. Its a downward spiral for me: if I can't afford to go to meets I don't want to train. I just have much more important things to take care of.

Currently I haven't swam in almost 3 weeks and feel horrible. I'm gonna have to start completely from scratch almost (and I'm a Top 10 swimmer). I'm gonna start back Monday and try to swim 3x a week, but I am not planning on competing in 2012 unless I get back working and can have a routine. I just can't get my head to push my heart to train right now.

It sucks, but life throws you curveballs.

Ex-distance guy
December 10th, 2011, 12:43 PM
I am a fulltime student and work 40 hrs a week at a grocerie store. I am at school all day twice a week, (my two days off work) and at work the rest of the time. I eventually coerced my boss into letting me come in no earlier than 7am and stay no later than 10pm, allowing me to get 1.5-2 hours in every morning. But since thanksgiving week, i've been working over 45 hours, often not leaving the joint til after midnight....plus its finals week! I havn't been in water in 2 weeks and feel like crap. I plan to be back in the water every day after school ends for the semester in a few days.
I'm not the type of person who can function on less than 6-7 hours of sleep. I hate it, and I don't know why i'm like that, but if i don't get a full 7-8 i'm going to try to find time to sleep during the day.
Basically if i'm not in bed by 10-10:45pm, I probably won't make it to morning practice. If I do, I'll come back at 7:15am and sleep till 11am! :bed:

__steve__
December 10th, 2011, 12:44 PM
For what it's worth, I am slow as hell and getting slower before I even reached my potential:
Find your own balance between work tempo and swimming.

To avoid weight gain just simply consume fewer calories.

Look forward to perhaps seeing your productions

Allen Stark
December 10th, 2011, 12:49 PM
There are sometimes in life where the reality is that we have to do things that we can't sustain over the long haul.If the duration of these is not too long,fine.The problem is when the unsustainable becomes the norm.Continue that for too long and your body will make you stop.
I have to swim,it is not a luxury,it is a very important part of my physical and psychological well being,just like eating,sleeping and breathing.
Sure you can take off the 10 lb later,but what if later is in 2 yr and it is 30 lb.
If 4000 yd is unworkable and is draining of energy instead of energizing try 1500 three times a week.
If you are sitting in a chair 12 hr/day that is unsustainable.

erezn
December 10th, 2011, 01:35 PM
I also have quite hectic days. I run from work back home to be with my 3 very energetic boys (3 of them) and after dinner, bath and bed time story I have nothing left in me not to mention a workout. So what i do is to wake up at 5 AM and swim before the gang wakes up. I think that intensity of the workout makes a huge difference in the way i feel later on that day. If I do intensive intervals I will feel it later on. But if I have a day that i need to be fully concentratede at work then I would have a moderate workout. you can swim for 3000 yds in a moderate pace and feel great after. Keep the intensive workouts for the weekends.

ourswimmer
December 10th, 2011, 01:37 PM
I was wondering if others take a break if they have too much work on their plate too.

I can train hard and work hard on the same day, but I can't sustain both simultaneously for weeks or months at a time. To the central nervous system, stress is stress, and it's cumulative. If you spend more time with your HR and BP up than you can recover from, you will become overtrained, and then both mentally and physically unhealthy, no matter whether the elevated HR and BP are from working out, or from listening to a client yell at you while you try to figure out how to get off the phone so that you can complete four other things for four other clients who are not currently yelling but who will be soon, or from grief over bad events in your family, or whatever else.

As Allen suggested, for me swimming easier and less is a better approach than not swimming at all. I see my friends, and I focus on technique and flexibility, but I slack. The swimming becomes a recovery exercise, not a high-intensity physical stressor. I spent most of this year that way, which meant I competed seldom and poorly but at least I am still alive and reasonably healthy.

Lui
December 10th, 2011, 03:49 PM
It sucks, but life throws you curveballs.

I know what you mean. In my animation career I had no work shortly after 9/11 because it had influence on the economy(or maybe a coincidence). Although I had much more time, I didn't train at all because I could hardly afford the pool fee after a few months and I wasn't focused. My priorities was to find work.



I have to swim,it is not a luxury,it is a very important part of my physical and psychological well being,just like eating,sleeping and breathing.
Sure you can take off the 10 lb later,but what if later is in 2 yr and it is 30 lb.
If 4000 yd is unworkable and is draining of energy instead of energizing try 1500 three times a week.

You're 100% right. I'm only doing this short-term. Long term it will backfire: weight gain, back pain and other aches, plus the psychological factor, like feeling more depressed. Normally working out should be an important priority and I'm glad that I managed to keep it up most of my 20 year work career.
Your suggestion of at least training 1500 three times a week makes sense. I feel a bit embarrassed though because I gained weight. I know it's silly but I was never over-weight:o


I can train hard and work hard on the same day, but I can't sustain both simultaneously for weeks or months at a time. To the central nervous system, stress is stress, and it's cumulative. If you spend more time with your HR and BP up than you can recover from, you will become overtrained, and then both mentally and physically unhealthy, no matter whether the elevated HR and BP are from working out, or from listening to a client yell at you while you try to figure out how to get off the phone so that you can complete four other things for four other clients who are not currently yelling but who will be soon, or from grief over bad events in your family, or whatever else.


I remember once when I worked on a feature movie that was pretty stressful, I went swimming every lunch hour. In addition to that I went to 3 hour life drawing classes after work 2-3 times a week(which were offered by our company). I also went to Wing Chun(Kung Fu) lessons 1-2 evenings a week and did a lot of bodyweight training. After about 6 months I felt like a wreck and got a cold about once a month. I dropped the Wing Chun and only went to life drawing once a week after that. That was seriously too much.:D

Celestial
December 10th, 2011, 04:36 PM
To get that extra concentration I am purposely not going swimming because I know I won't be as crisp to do my work with the same concentration, if you know what I mean. It's kinda a catch-22 situation: if I work out I will be generally fitter but will always feel drained from the workout at some point of the day and less concentrated for my work, and if I don't work out, I gain weight, feel unfit, get back pain from too much sitting, feel sluggish but I have more concentration for my work.

I personally think you would benefit from breaking up your day with a swim. Not, perhaps a 4000 m super charged, super fast workout, but like Allan said, perhaps a 1500. Getting up and out of your chair will not only help your metabolism, avoid back pain and that sluggish feeling, but going to the pool may refresh your brain as well. Sitting for too long makes more than your skeletal muscles stagnate, you know. You might have to set an alarm clock for 1/2 way through your work day - I know how easy it can be to get lost in your work, and then suddenly realize that it's dark outside and the day is gone! Sometimes I have taken a break from swimming too - but not a complete break - in grad school I had to satisfy myself with swimming twice a week, by myself, for about 2500-3000 - but at least I kept my feel for the water. Competing and improving in swimming wasn't my priority at that time, but it was a good physical outlet for frustrations!

Lui
December 10th, 2011, 05:59 PM
I personally think you would benefit from breaking up your day with a swim. Not, perhaps a 4000 m super charged, super fast workout, but like Allan said, perhaps a 1500.

I always find it hard when you're used to 4000m sprint training(I often do Paul's workouts) to switch to any easier training, but it's definitely better than nothing.
I guess I posted this thread to get motivated again:)

Lump
December 10th, 2011, 06:33 PM
Didn't mean to come off as a "Debbie Downer" but sometimes go through these waves of emotions....even more so during the holidays.

Allen is completely right. Since I got back in the water 3-1/2 years ago (after not swimming since college 17 years ago prior) its made a world of difference physically, mentally and emotionally. I'll be back in next week....in all my fatness.:D

Lump
December 10th, 2011, 06:36 PM
I always find it hard when you're used to 4000m sprint training(I often do Paul's workouts) to switch to any easier training, but it's definitely better than nothing.
I guess I posted this thread to get motivated again:)

Me too, I'm a mid-dist/dist guy so I almost feel ashamed to only do 3-4K when I'm used to doing 5-6K a workout 5x/week. Gonna have to just live with myself for the time being.

Good luck! BTW, my cousin is also in the animation business here in ATL. He used to work on Cartoon Network (Dexter's Laboratory and others). Now he free lancing I believe.

ElaineK
December 10th, 2011, 06:42 PM
Didn't mean to come off as a "Debbie Downer" but sometimes go through these waves of emotions....even more so during the holidays.

Allen is completely right. Since I got back in the water 3-1/2 years ago (after not swimming since college 17 years ago prior) its made a world of difference physically, mentally and emotionally. I'll be back in next week....in all my fatness.:D

Hey, Lump, good luck! :cheerleader: I hope you will decide to go to the Auburn meet, but, if you don't, it's understandable...

Good luck with your job search! :chug:

nkfrench
December 11th, 2011, 01:02 PM
I always have had problems balancing priorities. If I am doing well at work, my exercise/fitness and eventually health suffer. If I am doing well swimming/cycling, I am not doing justice at my job.

For me, exercise after work suits me best. I take my stuff to work so I do not need to go home to change clothes etc. The intense exercise physically tires me and clears my mind mentally. But then it takes a few hours to relax; and I am prone to oversleeping and getting to work late the next day.

First thing in the morning is easier to schedule; but I physically can't seem to get going for a hard workout and it can be hard to drag out of bed when I'm tired, short on sleep and know I have a very long stressful day ahead of me.

Swimming can be hard to justify the travel time, fees, time spent changing clothes, etc if you're not even going to do a 2,000 workout. However, you can maintain minimal fitness getting in 3 swims in per week, about a mile each time.

I worked out a deal where I would leave the office in time for an evening workout and then work remotely from home afterwards to pick up a few extra hours. But I was just too drained to be productive after exercise; and I also had my car broken into and company laptop stolen.

Some of my coworkers were able to find a gym near work and slip out for a long lunchhour workout. Key to that was finding a nearby facility and not spending much time in the lockerroom. I am planning to see if I can fit some lunchhour cycling into my schedule to take advantage of warmer temps and daylight. Fortunately my company has showers at work.

Forget the mentality that exercise has to be 100% or nothing. Make a deal with yourself that you can focus on technique drills this year, or focus on some other aspect of your swimming that didn't get proper attention during hard training. Just keep moving.

Waterdog7946
December 11th, 2011, 07:32 PM
I can say this....even when i have to put in the 12+ hour days, like I do during the entire month of december, I still get to the pool a couple times a week and warm up, stretch, and do a couple of sprints-about 1000 yds, this usually takes about 20-30m. I find that this helps my endurance at my job and n keeps my mental health in check. It amazing what just a little "maintainance" work will do for ya. The better shape you keep yourself in the better you'll manage those long days on the job.

Thrashing Slug
December 12th, 2011, 07:52 PM
I work a lot of crazy hours. Right now I am working two contracts - one full-time at 40-50 hrs/wk and one side project at 10-20 hrs/wk. I go through phases like this, with tons of work, and phases with little or none. Sometimes I have to travel for work.

My ideal workout routine is to do something every day, but that doesn't always happen because of work, family, etc. No matter what I'm doing I always make it a priority to swim at least 3 times a week. I find that the only way to ensure that I get my swim in is to do it first thing in the morning. When I'm at home that means Masters 3x/week at 5:30 AM. When I'm on the road I research whatever pools or bodies of water are nearby, and I visit those. Earlier this month I was in NYC and I regularly took the subway to Asphalt Green at 5 AM. It took 35 minutes to get to the pool, but it was well worth it. Going for a swim in the morning sets me up for a good, productive work day. It keeps me sane and allows me to endure the monotony and discomfort of the office.

Sometimes I do get pretty tired around 2PM or so, but that's nothing that a good strong cup of coffee can't fix. Like others have mentioned, I tend to lower the intensity of my swims when I am working a lot of hours. Instead of hardcore training, I approach the swimming as more of a restorative exercise.

rxleakem
December 12th, 2011, 10:36 PM
I have to get swims in around work as well (twelve hour days of pushing pills). Plus family commitments (with a daughter ready to graduate high school in the spring, no less). For me, I can only make the area workout group's practices once a month, but I get in on my own. I started out a few years ago huffing and puffing to make it though a 500 yard total workout, and slowly just built on to that with going farther each time.

It is a hard habit to get back in to, but when the time is available just make up your mind to go for it. I have been able to get in open water swims, which I love (even though I have a fear that Jaws might come up beside me at any moment - yes, even in freshwater lakes). I have lost some weight, toned up a bit, and feel a lot better all around so that I feel like I can contribute more to my family and work.

Don't worry about how you look. My wife always tells me that "what other people say about you is none of your business." She is right. If I wasn't hitting the pool, I personally would be on the couch watching tv, which is far less satisfying than immersing myself in chlorine or bodies of water. We are all pulling for you - that you are asking about it shows that you are ready to "jump into the water." :)

Lui
December 13th, 2011, 12:12 PM
A lot of interesting answers. I go to a gym with a 25 yard pool when I usually swim. The odd thing is that my old swimming club is in the 25 m. pool across the street where I live. They've been renovating this pool(total new construction) for ages(at least two years!!)
Last night I could see many lights on with construction workers doing some sort of last touch ups but it looks like the whole pool is almost finished and might re-open soon. That would mean just crossing the street. It doesn't get any more convenient than that(except if you have your own pool. My secret dream).:D


Good luck! BTW, my cousin is also in the animation business here in ATL. He used to work on Cartoon Network (Dexter's Laboratory and others). Now he free lancing I believe.

Animation is what got me into swimming in the first place. When you animate you are often hunched over your animation desk drawing in a tense position all day. When I just started out in animation a couple of colleagues would always go during lunch time because swimming is the best relief for your back. One friend convinced me to go along. I was mainly a cyclist until then but all of a sudden I was hooked.

JAR
December 13th, 2011, 12:41 PM
I have a very similar schedule. I am in the restaurant business and work til early in the morning. I average about 3K yards a day. I find that a 45 min nap between workout & work is key for me. It gives me enough energy to last for a very active 10hr. shift.

AnnG
December 15th, 2011, 01:23 PM
People I encounter only occasionally in my life tend to ask me "Are you still swimming?" which I always answer "That is a lot like asking me if I am still breathing." I will always swim just maybe not at the level I do now. I will always find a way to be in the water for the rest of my life, even if I have to back off some in yardage and intensity, it is still good for my head.

FindingMyInnerFish
December 23rd, 2011, 08:48 AM
When work gets busy, that's when I'm grateful that I run as well as swim--and I have to admit I'm mainly a runner, but do like swimming enough to want to keep it in my life (for injury prevention and variety in the competition I can choose). But time-wise, running works well because I don't have to worry about pool hours or getting to a pool... I step out the door and there's my venue.

Still, I am grateful for swimming, because it complements the running. I am working different muscles, so developing better overall strength. And I miss when I'm not able to get in as much or any swimming. So this is a helpful thread in terms of organizing my life to include both.

It's good to know when I'm really pressed for time that I don't have to be denied a good workout. That's when I step out the door and run my "hilly loop"--and charge up the hills.

And it's also good to know that I can add intensity/endurance to my schedule in a lower-impact way when I need to.

To Lui, you might want to consider (until your pool across the street reopens) adding running to your routine. It'll keep you fit when your schedule keeps you from getting to a pool to work out (And swimming genies... can I rub a bottle and make a pool materialize across the street from me?) ;)