Not enough

Every day, I spend just over 12 hours out of the house. I get up at 6:25 and leave the house at 7:10 for a 9:00 start at work. I get home in the evening two hours after finishing work, at 19:30, and that is if I do not run any errands after work such as going to the grocery store.

At work, we have three shifts, you start at 8:30, 9:00 or 9:30. So far I have always been on the 9:00 shift as I am still considered “in training”, but starting next week, I will be on alternating shifts, just like everyone else. For two weeks in August, I will be on the 9:30 shift meaning I will not finish work until 18:00 and get home even later than I do now.

As you can probably imagine, this doesn’t leave me with much time in the evening.

Between having dinner with N., doing some housework, and spending some time together relaxing, I never feel like I have enough time. N. gets home about two hours before I do, and it seems he is already doing the majority of the housework during the week.

Sometimes I feel that during the week, I am just doing the bare minimum, I am never really doing enough housework. On the weekends, I feel like I don’t have enough time to do everything I want to do, spend time with N, meet up with friends, do housework and do things such as organising my personal stuff, blog etc, and work out.

I’ve been in my job for two months, and I’ve not been to the gym a single time since. In the evenings I usually lack the energy not to mention time to go. I haven’t even gone on the weekends, which I cannot really blame on my job if I’m honest. As a result, I’ve put on quite a bit of weight in the past two months and I’m not happy with that at all.

There just isn’t enough time and it’s so hard to find a balance. I often feel like I am letting down everyone, most importantly myself, and no matter how I do it, I can’t get it right.

This is why I know that this long commute has to be temporary. At my last job I used to get home at 17:30, and those two hours every day make such a big difference.

In the end, I usually let my personal stuff fall by the wayside, but that isn’t a long-term solution. I need to work on my health and start working out again, and I want to have more me time again. Somehow, somewhere I have to find the energy and time to fit in those things as they are so important for my well-being.

Hopefully, as I get more and more accustomed to this schedule, I will find a way to make things work, to find a better balance, and hopefully, my next job will be closer to home and give me more time in the evenings.

How do you cope with a long commute? How do you balance everything, especially during the week?

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12 thoughts on “Not enough

  1. That’s a long commute for sure. I only have about 1 hour 10 minutes each way…..so with a two hour commute each way, whoa, not sure how to do that. All my advice would be blown out with the wind because I certainly would not be doing what I do now. I do tend to be gone around 12-13 as well. I get up at 5, leave the house at 5:15 to take the first train to London at 5:30. I go to the gym and get there right when it opens at 6:30. I am at my desk including shower and all that by 8 and work until about 5 or 5:30 and then usually get home at 6:30 or closer to 7. It’s a long ass day for sure.

    My only advice is that you are 100% correct. You do have to take yourself and your health serious because eventually you will start resenting yourself and others if you don’t.
    Here is one idea: Oder the 30 Day Shred and get up 20 minutes earlier and do a 20-25 minute home workout before you go to work. Do that 2x per week and then hit the gym Sat and Sunday. Voila. 4x per week you did something just for you. I had phases in my life where all i could manage was an at home workout DVD and it was pretty good actually :)

  2. I have a commute of about 45 minuteseach way. When I started work at my current job 2 years ago I worked crazy hours. I’ve always been a morning person so I got up at 5 and got to work at around 7.00 am, but I didn’t leave before 5.30 or 6.00 pm. After some months I was in the same situation as you are. I didn’t work-out I felt like I left the majority of the housework to my boyfriend, had no time for anything and I felt like I was a huge dissapointment for everyone.

    Then I changed my attitude.
    I use my commutes in the morning to plan my days/weeks and in the evening I’ll use the time to relax and get down, listen to music/audio books (I take the car, so reading isn’t really an option).
    I also stopped feeling bad about being the one who does less housework. I believe that we live in a modern society. So if my boyfriend leaves the house 1 hour after me and gets back home 1 hour before me I think it’s ok, if he does more of the daily chores during the week. This still doesn’t mean that I don’t do anything. I do the washing, plan our weekly meals (meal planners are GREAT), do the main grocery shopping on the weekends, etc. when I have more time.
    My main problem is still the working-out. I never really enjoyed going to the gym, so that’s not really an option, but we’ve tried out some other things. I try to slip in a daily walk around our neighborhood, just for 20 minutes, DVD work-outs are great (I’m also doing the 30 Day Shred from time to time). We also started dancing classes once a week which we really enjoy and they are like a work-out, believe me.

    I don’t think that I have more time now, than 2 years ago, but I feel more balanced and like I enjoy my life more. And I’ve found a new motto that I start every day thinking of: “Everything I do today is important, because I spent a whole day on it.”

  3. I only have a 30 minute commute so I am not really qualified to give advice I guess.
    But with our hobby being horses and riding I am usually only home from work late too.
    I get up at half past 5 and leave the house between 6 and 6:15. I am at work between half past 6 and quarter to 7 and I am here until quarter past 4, Thursdays until 5 and Friday until 12.
    From Monday to Thursday I am usually driving to the stables right after work as it is on my way home. I need 15 minutes to get there. I am then riding my horse and sometimes one of M’s two horses so it is 7 until I am home, sometimes 8.
    I know, this is my (our) hobby and I love doing it but it leaves me with little time for something else, at least during the week. We don’t do any housework during the week, I only go to the baker or butcher if we ran out on something. The main grocery shopping day is Friday afternoon or Saturday morning.
    Friday after work we are always driving out to see my Mom for 3 hours so I come home around 5. And then we drive to the horses. ;-)
    Normally we take one day “off” from the horses every week but since we move the horses end of May we have been there every day. I guess we will start the “one day a week off” again soon.
    But next to horses, work, visiting Mom and doing all the cleaning and washing on Saturday there is not a lot of time for anything else. And if there is time we work around the house and garden. There is still a lot to do.
    And I haven’t worked out in months!!

  4. I like Steffi’s approach. I mean, how much housework is there in a house of two? I live with a teenager and our housework during the week is putting the dishes in and out of the diswasher and wiping down the counter, that’s it.

    And then we each split our cleaner. Highly recommend. 20 quid from me and 20 quid from him and on Friday we have the cleaner do the bathrooms, floors, dusting, vacuuming ect. I know a cleaner is a luxury and maybe not the way to go, but just like Steffi, during the week we do the bare minimum and if our cleaner can’t make it, we do the bathrooms and vacuuming on Saturday morning together. Don’t be hard on yourself (get a cleaner if it really bothers you, maybe you can get one even cheaper, you might only need someone for 2 hours if they are good :)

    • Oh, how I would love a cleaner!!!! One day, I tell you, one day I have one!
      I just need someone for Saturday morning 2 to 3 hours. Vacuuming, mopping and cleaning the bathroom. The rest I am fine with. That would be amazing!
      We had our cleaner while living in SA and it was wonderful. She even did the ironing and window cleaning, but I am totally ok with doing that myself. And I do the washing and dusting, that’s not a problem.
      Perhaps I should try to find one,… :-)

    • Well, we don’t have a dishwasher or cleaner. Doing dishes, cleaning, laundry, mowing & watering the lawn, making dinner, preparing breakfast and lunch for the next day, grocery shopping … it adds up, even when there are just two of us.

  5. I absolutely get your frustration. As you know, I work 10+ hours days, but I get (most) Fridays off and that’s a huge luxury (I know)… but during the week, I also don’t get anything done (or so it feels).
    Can you use time on the bus to do stuff like blogging/reading… a little bit of stuff that you like to do? I also think that Ullis advice to try and do a home workout is a great idea to get the ball rolling again on the workout front. Do you have a gym you could go to on the weekend? Maybe that’s something you could do WITH N?

    • I do actually have a gym membership and the gym is a two-minute walk from our apartment which makes it even worse. N. doesn’t have a membership at the moment, he did but canceled it to save money when I first moved here. I do wish he’d renew it so we could go together but I think he prefers going out on his bike as long as he still can.
      Yeah, I try to use some of the time on the bus for that, but there are some things I just can’t do on the bus.

  6. Uffda that is a long commute! I am sorry to hear and totally understand how draining that is. Would you be able to do something during lunch? Go for a walk maybe? I do always feel like I have more energy when I actually leave the office.
    Fingers crossed this is not for too too long and something closer pops up in the not too distant future!
    Hugs!

  7. I think what you have to realise as well is that not having enough time is part of living together, because you want yo spend time with your loved one (time you would otherwise maybe spend on household chores). When I still had a long commute we took two hours during the weekend to clean the entire house, and on some nights I’d hardly spend time at home because I went to my dance classes. You just have to try and figure out how you can make this situation work for you – but it is difficult.

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