Keeping the wheels spinning: How to stay motivated with hobbies once you start work

Over the pandemic, like many, I was bitten by the cycling bug. Over the summer in between finishing my LPC and starting my training contract I racked up thousands of kilometres exploring the local countryside. As the start of my training contract approached I started to wonder how I would be able to keep up with my new found hobby whilst also embarking on the first steps of my legal career.

Fortunately, since starting at Michelmores I have managed to not only keep up with my cycling, but even achieve milestones I previously considered out of reach.

Continuing with your hobbies once you start work is key to maintaining balance and staying healthy. Therefore, finding ways to continue pursuing these is essential.

So how is it that I have managed to keep the wheels from falling off?

1. Set specific goals

Having a goal to work towards can help keep you going when your motivation might otherwise be waning.

Earlier this year, along with other trainees, I helped to organise an internal wellbeing challenge encouraging everyone at work to get outside and challenge themselves to see how many steps they could manage over a fortnight. 

Later this year I signed up for a cycling challenge in Dartmoor. Having this event to work towards has helped me to get out and ride, even when my motivation has dwindled, and once out I have never regretted it.

Whether you choose to join in with firmwide initiatives or set your own targets, goals are a great way to stick with them.

2. Get into a routine

Setting aside time during the week for your hobby can help make sure you don’t let it slip.

If others in your team know that you swim on Tuesdays (or whatever it is you do) they will be more understanding and help ensure you don’t miss it. Across my first two seats (Corporate and Tax Trusts & Succession) I have been able to cycle regularly on Wednesday evenings. As long as my work has been in hand when I have jumped on my bike both teams have been happy with me heading out for a ride. By getting work across to others for review in a timely manner and keeping others informed, this has been very much achievable. Michelmores' approach to agile working (discussed here by Charlie Parker) has also helped this. Being able to work from home means that commuting time can be saved to help make it out on time. Being able to work from different offices has also been incredibly useful. My current team is based out of Exeter and Bristol, meaning that if I want to join a ride in either of those places, I can easily work from that office for the day. 

Likewise, making plans to train with others (like friends or being part of a club) can help motivate you to go out and do it even at the end of the day.

3. Embrace work initiatives

At Michelmores there are plenty of extra activities going on that you can throw yourself into.

Luckily for me, one of these is the Cycle Network which runs each month in both Exeter and Bristol. This provides a great opportunity to meet people across the firm as well as get out for exercise.

But it is not just cyclists who are catered for…With our Michelmores 5K Charity Run making a comeback this year, a variety of wellbeing challenges and even a book club, no matter what your hobby there will be something for you.