Interview: Marcus, a Strategy Consultant

Marcus, we are glad to have you here today. You have been a management consultant for several years now. I assume your workload is quite tough, but you still try to stay in shape. Therefore, I believe you are a perfect example of a busy professional who focuses on fitness and health. Let’s dive into our interview.

What role does fitness play in your life?

Fitness in general is very important to me. Working out gives me the right physical balance. Considering the fact that I am sitting multiple hours per day in an office chair, the physical movement is perfect to do something good for my body. Typically, I try to work out 3-4 times per week. Although I do not always make it, it helps to have a clear goal in mind.

How do you manage to integrate your fitness routine into your busy work schedule?

This is a good question. First, I think it is most important to set priorities right and position your workout somewhere at the top of your list of priorities. You can always find excuses not to work out unless fitness has the priority it deserves in your life. Second, as time for sport is a limited good as a management consultant, I try to focus on shorter, but therefore more efficient workouts or runs. This enables me to do sports even at days when time is scarce. Third, I researched quite a bit about how exercising with my own body weight can be performed efficiently. Since I am traveling at lot for work, I do not often have the chance to visit a proper gym. Therefore, knowing efficient body-weight exercises is crucial and a major part of my workout routine.

I know that you often work until late at night. What is your main motivation to squeeze your workout into a busy day?

Again, if your priorities are set right, then there should not be any excuse not to work out. For me personally, I want to retain my general energy level throughout the years. In addition to that, it also helps me to clear my head after a busy day. As I said before, doing sports is the perfect balance to a busy work day.

What is your biggest challenge in maintaining your fitness routine?

In my current job it is often unpredictable to plan your fitness time. Client meetings or important tasks might pop up suddenly which can easily mess up your planned after-dinner workout. Moreover, since I am traveling a lot for work, I always need to adapt to the situations on site. The environment for running and the equipment in hotel gyms vary from location to location. Therefore, I need to rethink how my training looks like every other month. Last but not least, I also have days when motivation is low and when I miss energy after a long working day. I think this is a challenge everybody faces. But this is the chance to demonstrate discipline which you need if you want to stay consistent.

What pushes you to workout at a day when your motivation is low?

Most often, it is my colleagues. Lucky me I do mostly work in a team where at least one of my colleagues is also motivated to work out. At days when I lack motivation, my colleague is the one who pushes me to work out. At other days, it is vice versa.

What role does nutrition play for you? Do you focus on eating healthy?

I try to focus on healthy nutrition whenever I can. But I must admit that it is not easy during busy times. Sometimes there is just not enough time to grab proper lunch.

What are your fitness priorities (running, lifting weights, nutrition) and why?

I have never been the bodybuilder type of fitness enthusiast. Rather, I focus on a general well-being of my body. Therefore, I prefer running and basic fitness exercises, combined with proper stretching sessions to maintain mobility. I believe that this is my path to success of staying fit and healthy in the long run.

What advice would you give other career-minded people who struggle to squeeze a workout into a busy day?

Prioritization is the most important success factor. There are days or weeks when it might not be possible to find enough time and the calmness for workouts. But if those circumstances stay for a long time, you probably must change something as I am convinced that regular sport and sufficient sleep will have a significant impact on your performance.

What would you recommend to people who struggle to be as active as you are?

Don’t reach for the stars before you even began. Start small with short workouts, for example a 10-minute session each morning. Even a little walk for 10 minutes after lunch is great to start with as it trains your mind to start being active.

Marcus, thank you very much for your time.

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