How to do a lunch hour workout

Am I allowed to take a lunch/gym break when I work from home, or is it required that I work straight through lunch to prove that I'm actually working and not laying around in my pajamas watching Friends reruns? I've been home with strep for the past 2 days. Now that my fever has gone away I feel okay, I'm just contagious AF and I don't want to infect my coworkers with strep cooties. BECAUSE I'M NICE. 

Anyway, so I get asked this a lot: "HOW do you EVEN workout at lunch?" Well, I'll tell you how I even.

1. I don't consistently wake up early enough to exercise, and when I do wake up early enough I need at least 30 minutes to fully awaken before I can be productive in my workout. My stomach needs time to wake up too, since it's an asshole. If I jump immediately into a sweatsesh, it will either end badly (vom fest) or I won't push myself as hard as normal to avoid it ending badly. Daily 5am workouts just don't jive with my system. Occasionally though.

2. I hate working out in the gym after work. The machines are all taken and there are too many men in tank tops. I could workout in the home gym I'm slowly building, but my schedule is pretty tight when I get home. Gotta get dinner in, bath time and I want to play with my kid or do other stuff, like fun new projects for y'all. 

3. I don't have a husband I can leave my kid with. If I wake up for a 6am run, what am I gonna do with my kid? Aside from knee surgery x2, this is the reason I haven't signed up for a marathon. I can't commit to that much training until I commit to a man babysitter or my kid is old enough to take care of himself/sleep in long enough for it not to matter. And after work? My gym's daycare closes at 6pm, so that's ZERO help for single working moms. I'm lookin' at you, 24 hour fitness.

Basically I workout at lunch because I have to.

But what do you do exactly?
Do y'all use Google Calendar? Because I do. I use it to keep track of my kid's schedule, when to pay bills, normal stuff like appointments & birthdays, and also my workouts. I usually plan a couple of weeks in advance and at the beginning of the month I make a goal for the end of the month. March's goal was 125lbs. I was not successful because I ate too many calories, so I'm gonna carry that over to April's goal. I just rilly wanna lose 5 pounds. (Okay, a little more than 5.) By the end of April I also want to be able to run a 5k in 30 minutes, which will be close to pre-surgery time. I'm confident I'll get there, because yesterday I ran 2 miles at a 10 minute pace while streppin'. Steppin' while streppin'. That's gonna be the name of my workout video.

You didn't answer the question. What do you DO?
It varies. I LOVE cardio, it makes me feel good and sweat a lot and it's my favorite way to exercise. I always start with a little cardio and then move to weights, so if you break it down by the hour:
5 minutes: Change into gym clothes

20 minutes: cardio. Run a couple of miles or speed walk at a steep incline have been my faves lately. I also love the stair climber, but they don't have one at my lunch gym.

20 minutes: weights. I choose a muscle group to work each day, but I do a little bit of knee therapy every day since I'm technically still recovering from surgery. Circuits are my favorite because I think they keep you on your toes and use time more efficiently. So since today is arm day, I'll do:
10 bicep curls
10 tricep push downs
10 squats with weighted arm raises
10 medicine ball throws (straight up and catch it as you sink into a small squat)
10 car drivers with the same medicine ball
10 pushups, sometimes with weights 
If I still have time I'll run through it 4x. The medicine ball throws are my fave because it's kinda like playing sports. By yourself.

15 minutes: get dressed. Maybe shower, maybe not. That's what the 5,000 bottles of body spray you have are for. Also, deodorant. I have deodorant in my gym bag and my desk just in case my fat starts crying stanky tears unexpectedly. I have a gym towel that I LOVE for when I shower at the gym, because it's super absorbent and folds way smaller than the towel with the dancing jalapenos that your aunt brought you back from her cruise to Mexico. Recommend.

It's a tight schedule, but it keeps me focused.

But when do you eat lunch if you workout at lunch?
I eat before and after my gym sesh while I'm working. I usually eat 4ish times at work and I try not to take smelly stuff like fish, and if I do I'll usually eat it cold. (You're welcome, coworkers.) I mean how am I gonna set a good example if I make the break room smell like bubbleguts all the time?

But how do you not look ratchet AF when you get back to work?
I take my makeup and flat iron with me so I can cover up my red cheeks and iron out the bump in my hair the ponytail holder leaves, make my messy waves perfectly messy again or just leave it up because ain't nothin' gonna help. Y'all, I've had that flat iron for 3 years on the nose now. It's rad and not as expensive as Chi and other brands. 

Do you have other questions? I'm going to do a video again soon, aka once my voice gets back to normal. Ask me questions about my workout, foods, recipes, love life or whatever and I'll either answer them or not on the YouTubes sometime next week! You can email me at meg(at)nerkyblog(dot)com if you want to ask privately. I'll be sure to announce your first and last name in the video. (Just kiddin'.)


  1. Thanks for this post! I just needed a plan, Stan bc I'm soooo intimidated by my one hour time frame!

    Follow up question(s): do you have set times for when you eat throughout the day, or do you just eat when hungry? And does it really matter what you eat before and after a workout?

    Thanks!! Kelsey

    1. I usually just eat when I'm hungry, about every 2-3 hours. Most people eat their carbs before a workout and then refuel with protein after. I try to get protein with every meal because I'm really bad about not getting enough.


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