As a gym owner, I like being in the gym.  I like watching people train, tweaking their programs, helping them improve technique, and on the best of all days, watching them set new personal bests.
 
Yet, I know that there is more to it than just showing up in gym clothes, putting on some music, dishing out a few high fives, and calling it a day. 
 
I know that I have to spend time working on my business, so I block time for it.  On this day from this hour to that hour, I will do desk work.
 
So I sit down at my desk to work.  And I have no idea how I’m going to spend that time.
 
So I fall back on default tasks.
 
I should probably be using my computer, right?  So I fire that up. 
 
What next?  I dunno.  I suppose I should check my emails. 
 
BOOM!   Clean inbox. 
 
What next?  Maybe update my quickbooks.  Done! 
 
And next thing you know, the allotted time is up.  Good for me!  I spent a few hours doing desk work, just like a real adult!
 
And you know what?  By working this way, I never really make any real progress on my business.  The big projects that would make a difference- optimizing the website, writing marketing material, etc. never got done.
 
In the workout world, the above scenario might look like this:
 
I know that I should go to they gym for an hour, so I make the time (an excellent first step, by the way).  And when I walk in- what next?
 
I think I should probably do that sitting hamstring stretch?  I’ll hit that real quick.
 
Then what?  I don’t know how to lift weights, so I’ll skip that entirely and jump on a treadmill.
 
45 minutes later, I’m covered in sweat. Endorphins are being released, I’m feeling good.
 
Now what?
 
I’ll finish up with some crunches.  I get a good burn in the midsection, which is that “hurt so good” kind of feeling.
 
And now my hour is up.  I’ve worked out.  Check the box and move on.
 
Of course, the above scenario could be played out in a few different ways- maybe the default is bench press and curls, maybe the default is to do a bunch of Kettlebell swings until we’re smoked.

Either the way the outcome is the same.  We are doing some good, yes, but we don’t break plateaus.
 
Our business carries on, but is never really flooded with leads and our web traffic never really improves.
 
We lose a few pounds initially, but after six months (or sometimes 6 years!) of working out, our shoulders are still too tight to reach over our head, we can't hold a plank  and we can’t do a single pushup.
 
The problem is that we aren’t addressing what needs to be addressed. 
 
Take the time to step back, assess what is needed most, and create a plan that addresses this need.
 
Once you plan the work and work the plan, you’ll no longer have that feeling that you’re spinning your wheels. 
 
There are few things worse than wasting time and effort.  Putting some forethought into how you spend your time will ensure that your hard work will pay off.