Do What You Can

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Good morning!  I woke up to a hearty bowl of banana oatmeal:


My oatmeal contained:


  • 1/2 cup of oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup  milk
  • 1 banana
  • Toppings: brown sugar and cashews


Nothing beats a sprinkle of brown sugar on oatmeal.  Nothing!


10 Minute Strength Routine


One of the things I’ve decided to integrate into my new schedule is 10 Minute Strength Routines in the AM.   I think it’s really important to tailor your workout program to what works for YOU.  Sure, other bloggers are capable of waking up at 5:45 and going on a 6 mile run or heading to spin class, but it simply would not work for me to do a long workout in the morning during the week (I start work at 7 AM). 


Do what you can, and don’t compare yourself to others (this is a really easy trap in the blog world).  10 minutes is all I have to spare in the mornings.  Doing something productive with my morning makes me feel happy and healthy! 


Here’s this morning’s routine:


  • 30 push-ups
  • 20 crunches
  • 20 leg lift with V-crunches (10 each leg)
  • 2 sets of 12 reps – tricep kick backs (each arm; 10 lb weight)
  • 2 sets of 12 reps – bicep curls (each arm; 10 lb weight)

    Off to work I go! 


    How do you squeeze a workout into your busiest days?



    • Adi ( May 13, 2009, 3:56 am

      I totally agree. Everyone goes on about listening to YOUR body, but it’s easy to try and listen to everyone else’s when it seems like their routine is “better”. Great reminder Caitlin! That’s awesome that the 10 minute routine is working well for you.

    • thenoviceberker May 13, 2009, 3:56 am

      I 100% agree. I definitely feel major pressure from reading other blogs to do a hefty early morning workout, but I’m just not sure I’m a morning person! Doing what works for you is way important, definitely.

      Hope your day goes well!

    • Erica May 13, 2009, 4:23 am

      Hey girl. Morning bowl of oats looks awesome- love the addition of the cashews. You def need to do whatever works for you! I get up earlier or stay up later to fit in workouts. I think for some its better that they get the extra sleep vs. working out, but for me its worth losing a tad of sleep for my workout.

    • Michelle May 13, 2009, 4:28 am

      I think that even 10-15 minutes of working out does the body and mind good. I’ve started the ‘Skinny Jean Workout’–cause it’s going into winter here in Oz..and i have been posting it on my blog. I love it cause it’s about 15 minutes a day and it keeps me honest. It’s like icing on the workout cake!

    • teacherwoman May 13, 2009, 4:31 am

      It can be so hard to squeeze in a workout on busy days. Sometimes you just gotta remind yourself that quality is better than quantity and if you even get something little in there, it’s better than nothing!

    • Emily May 13, 2009, 4:38 am

      I’m definitely not a morning workout person, so I’m not going to force myself to do a huge workout. I think it’s great that you have a 10 min routine. It’s something that is fast, and you will be more likely to stick to it. 🙂

    • Leah @ Simply Fabulous May 13, 2009, 4:50 am

      Caitlin thanks you for this! I think it is so important! Last night i was so tired after i ran that i couldn’t do the whole of level 2 shred. I did a small workout instead with some lifting and abs and felt great!

    • D10 May 13, 2009, 5:00 am

      Very true comment about doing what you can. It is so easy to compare ones self to others, but bottom line do what make you happy, do the best you can, and what you can.

    • Stacey May 13, 2009, 5:04 am

      I am the complete opposite! I would rather do my longgg workouts in the morning because they make me feel like I can conquer the world!

    • runnerskitchen May 13, 2009, 5:14 am

      i only have 60 minutes for lunch, but sometimes i will sneak out for a mid day workout at my gym. i often return to my desk a tad sweaty and flushed, but it’s worth it! i feel like it makes me more productive in the afternoon 🙂

    • Mica May 13, 2009, 5:15 am

      Wow, you’re totally right; it is so easy to get stuck in the trap of comparing yourself to others in the blog-o-sphere! I definitely get upset when I’m not as fast as all the speedy running bloggers, but oh well…what can we do?

    • Jenny May 13, 2009, 5:34 am

      Caitlin! Did you read my mind this morning? This was just exactly 100% what I needed to hear. Life has been crazy lately and I have all this guilt when I read blogs where people work out more… but it’s MY body, MY life, and there is no reason to compare! Thanks for always being so SPOT ON!

    • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point May 13, 2009, 5:36 am

      jenny – your welcome 🙂 hope the hecticness if your life calms down!

    • Megan May 13, 2009, 5:58 am

      mmmmm, oats 🙂

      i do the lamest things to exercise when I have a full day. I think that fitting in little spurts of exercise instead of setting aside a big chunk of time works well for me. instead of walking, i lunge (like, around the house, if i have to go to the bathroom or the kitchen or whatev) and I will use a pilates ring or ankle weights or something and do leg exercises if I have to be sitting down. if you’re in the privacy of your own home, it isnt very embarrassing and it really works!

    • Brandi May 13, 2009, 5:58 am

      I agree, and it is easy to compare yourself to other bloggers!

      I think doing what you can is the best thing to do. YOU know your schedule, when you have time and when you don’t, etc.

      I also agree about the brown sugar 🙂 I had a little sprinkle this morning on my oats – I love how it melts onto the oatmeal!

    • Victoria May 13, 2009, 6:00 am

      If it’s possible, I like to double up — by studying on the elliptical or writing the grocery list on the stairmaster, stuff like that.

    • Rachel May 13, 2009, 6:00 am

      I completely agree…every little bit counts. I fight with myself some days because I don’t really feel like pushing myself through a run or a long weight session but you can really just go for a walk or 10 minutes here and there and be ok. Thanks for the reminder. Have a good day 🙂

    • Rachel May 13, 2009, 6:01 am

      Oh and I was so upset when Helen won! She weighs like 15 pounds less than me and I think we’re the same height! That’s a little much. Plus she just looked a little weird that thin.

    • Melissa @ For the Love of Health May 13, 2009, 6:15 am

      Awesome Caitlin!

      I whole-heartedly agree!
      I am NOT a morning person either and getting up for those early morning runs is something I desire but it will probably never happen and I have accepted that.

      I always slip in a workout when I am super duper busy- even if it’s 8pm at night. I don’t stress too much when I don’t make it to the gym earlier. I’d rather work out than watch tv so I am not missing out if my workout doesn’t happen until the evening 🙂

    • *One Step at a Time* May 13, 2009, 6:15 am

      This is why I love YOUR blog so much! You don’t fall into the social comparison trap and I love how you life YOUR life for YOU only! It is so important not to fall into the “social comparison trap” and you are AMAZING at this!! Thanks for being awesome! 🙂

    • Weight and Meditate May 13, 2009, 6:17 am

      Good for you, Caitlin! I think a ten minute routine is a great idea and would probably be good plan for someone like me who gets bored VERY quickly lifting. Keep it up!

    • Meg May 13, 2009, 6:32 am

      I love it….”Do what you can and don’t compare yourself to others” 🙂

    • Amy May 13, 2009, 6:37 am

      When you say that you do “20 leg lift with V-crunches (10 each leg”… is there any way for you to explain to me what exactly you are doing? I think I have an idea but I am not sure!


    • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point May 13, 2009, 6:40 am

      amy – maybe ill do some pictures soon.

      basically, get in crunch position. lift your leg so it is 90 degrees from the floor and lower so it is 3 inches above the floor. do a normal crunch while lifting your leg back up 90 degrees. repeat 10 times and switch legs.

    • Christina May 13, 2009, 6:47 am

      I’m a morning person and have to get up and workout early but if you told me to workout right after work I’d never do it! I definitely agree that everyone just has to do what’s best for them 🙂

    • tfh May 13, 2009, 6:48 am

      I’ve found I can achieve a TON with really short strength workouts (or short high intensity cardio sessions)– more probably than the longer, easier sessions. Your 10 minutes sound great to me! And how many of us end up doing nothing because we think 10 minutes isn’t enough time?

    • runsarah May 13, 2009, 7:00 am

      I love getting in short little 10 minute workouts here and there because it’s sometimes all I have time for. Great post!

    • Niki May 13, 2009, 7:09 am

      I totally agree that everyone should do what works best for them! I am definitely a morning person and on my busy work days I get up at 4am to run or do The Shred. Everyone thinks I’m crazy but it works for me!!

    • Rose May 13, 2009, 7:12 am

      Great quickie workout 🙂

    • SuzanneRN May 13, 2009, 7:20 am

      Mmm… love the breakfast. Lots of my fav things!

    • K from ksgoodeats May 13, 2009, 7:22 am

      I’m loving the cashews as the topping! Such a great nut!!

      I squeeze in quick workouts if I’m watching TV – do a few push ups/sit ups/lunges.

    • NYgirl@heart May 13, 2009, 7:41 am

      I used to start work at 7 am too, so I used to work out in the evenings. I only recently was able to start working out in the mornings since I’ve been laid off and am working on my writing full time.
      I totally feel your pain, it’s not easy to fit workouts in when you start that early, ESPECIALLY when you’re working 2 jobs. You do what you can WHEN you can…I have faith that you’ll be the superstar that you are and rock your races!

    • Carrie H May 13, 2009, 7:47 am

      I just read your running post from last night and I’m so happy for you for completing a successful run after your break! You’re a great inspiration of what Kath said the other day — to treat your body like she’s your best friend!

      Good luck with your busy schedule. I know it’ll be tough, but you can do it. 😉

    • Claire May 13, 2009, 7:55 am

      I usually do my workouts AFTER work but if I have a busy day or a 12-hour shift, I’ll get up earlier to be at the gym whenever it opens. That way, I’m able to get my workout in. I don’t LIKE doing this early morning workout, but some days it’s the only way to do it. Of course, sometimes, I just take the day off or do a simple video at home!

    • Carolina John May 13, 2009, 7:57 am

      geez, 30 pushups is nuts! good job.

      i work at home too and just squeeze in the strength when i can. but i do it at my desk.

    • Ellen (Peace In Motion) May 13, 2009, 8:20 am

      Any little bit counts! On busy days, when I know I don’t have a solid amount of time to work out, I try to do little things. Take the stairs, get and walk to the water cooler instead of using a water bottle. Even though the things are small, I think in the long run they add up and help me stay fit!

    • iowagirleats May 13, 2009, 8:22 am

      Oooo I am digging that workout – straight forward and easy to remember!! I might work that into my schedule!

    • Matt May 13, 2009, 8:25 am

      I squeeze in workouts by waking up early. If I have to get up at 4:30 or 5 to run, you better bet I’ll do it.

    • Diana May 13, 2009, 8:31 am

      I definitely try to step out of the office for at least 20 minutes everyday to get my legs moving and the blood circulating, even if it’s just to get cash at the ATM or whatever. Plus I drink a ton of water at my desk and that forces me to at least get up to pee every hour!

    • Help Meghan Run May 13, 2009, 8:52 am

      Great tips! And a very good point about not succumbing to the blog pressure.

    • happinessawaits May 13, 2009, 8:52 am

      When all else fails, I do a 20-40 minute yoga download at home in the evening. Even if it is vigorious, I still sleep like a baby post-yoga.

      If it isn’t too too hectic (or early), I try to just wake up 30-45 minutes early and go for a jog…but sometimes that makes for a VERY long day!

      Happiness Awaits

    • seekinghealthybalance May 13, 2009, 9:01 am

      I am impressed by anyone who can exercise in the mornings on a work day! I can’t find the time. But when I work out in the mornings on a weekend I feel great and full of energy all day. Maybe I need to try and find 10 minutes…..

    • Leah @ Simply Fabulous May 13, 2009, 9:08 am

      Caitlin, were you sore this morning at all from your run??

    • Sarah Mila May 13, 2009, 9:11 am

      Some morning I simply do not feel like moving let alone getting on the treadmill etc. but I’ve been able to push myself by thinking of how great I feel after a workout (even if it’s a small one). I am much happier for the rest of the day with an early morning workout and have a much better mindset!

    • Red Head, Yellow Dog May 13, 2009, 9:38 am

      Love your outlook of just doing a little bit!! it all adds up big time.

    • Susan May 13, 2009, 4:32 pm

      When I have a reeeally busy day, and have to squeeze in a workout at 8pm or something, I just make sure it’s something I look forward to. Instead of thinking “ugh, I have to go to the gym after this” I try to see it as a little bit of time I get to spend on myself during a hectic day 🙂

    Healthy Tipping Point