How to calculate your available time for training

When starting a new training phase, one of the initial decisions you must make is how much time you can truly allocate to your training regimen on a weekly basis. It’s not about wishful thinking or ideal training hours; it’s about identifying the actual time you can devote to training.

To calculate this, let’s start with the total available time in a week, which consists of 168 hours. Deduct the hours you allocate to other essential aspects of life – sleep, work, family time, personal hygiene, shopping, leisure, social life, commuting, and more. What remains after these commitments is your available time for training. Depending on your priorities, you may even consider adjusting some of these commitments to make more time for your training. Effective planning is key here!

Distance Time Calculator

Available Training Time:

Training Time Calculator

When estimating your available training hours for the week, it’s crucial to consider several key factors for a more accurate calculation. Here are five significant factors to optimize your training time:

  1. Prioritize Sleep: Sleep is at the top of the list for a good reason. It’s the last area you should compromise when trying to find extra time during the week. Aim for a minimum of 7 hours of sleep each night to support your training efforts effectively.

  2. Training Takes More Time: It’s not just about the hours you spend in direct training; there are additional activities like checking equipment, changing, showering, nutrition prep, stretching, and meals. A 1.5-hour bike ride can easily transform into 2.5-3 hours of your time. So, add 10-15% to your planned training time to account for the total time spent.

  3. Everything Takes Longer Than Expected: Life is unpredictable and unexpected but urgent matters can demand your time and attention. Allocate an additional 10% as a buffer for these unforeseen events. This extra time can be wisely used for family or leisure activities if it remains unneeded.

  4. Meal Preparation and Eating: Don’t forget to factor in the time needed for weekly shopping, cooking, and cleanup. Proper nutrition is crucial for energy levels and recovery, so the hours spent on food-related activities should be included in your schedule.

  5. Personal and Family Time: Many people have personal and family commitments that are non-negotiable. This includes time spent with loved ones, running errands, attending social events, and other personal time. It’s essential to account for these in your schedule.

  6. Recovery and Rest: Effective training goes hand in hand with adequate recovery. Avoid burnout and injury by incorporating rest and recovery time into your schedule, ensuring that your training remains sustainable and efficient.

  7. Communication is Key: Although not directly related to time allocation, effective communication is equally crucial. If you have a family or partner, let them know about your time commitments for the coming weeks or months and why you are making these choices. Clear communication can prevent stress at home and ensure that your goals and commitments are understood and supported.

By considering these factors, you can create a comprehensive view of your schedule and lifestyle, enabling you to determine the actual hours available for training. It’s essential to factor these elements into your planning to design a balanced and realistic training program that aligns with your individual lifestyle and goals while also ensuring a positive work-life balance.

For a more detailed breakdown of time allocation use the online Google Spreadsheet or download the Excel(.xlsx) File