Striking A Balance
A healthy work-life balance sounds simple enough, but as most people can attest over the past eleven months, in practice, work and life’s daily demands are often competing. In lieu of magically fabricating an extra two hours per day, we caught up with Patrick Beaulieu, a husband, father, business owner, obstacle course racer, and competitive trail runner. Over the years Beaulieu has worked to hone this balance that includes all his passions. It’s a process, it requires flexibility, communication, prioritization and system that works always seems to be evolving with time.
It Starts with a Foundation: Maintain a Strong Team
I am a husband and I am a father of three kids. I have a 2-year-old son and I have two step children, an 8-year-old boy and 11-year-old girl. Needless to say, it’s a crazy household at times and things can get hectic. We have daycare, school, sports, and like any parent knows the list goes on!
I have my own building construction company and we do a lot of residential and commercial buildings. I’m fortunate to have a great crew that I can rely on so I’m able to have some flexibility and take days off to compete when needed.
Build on that Foundation: Source the Right Support
There are times that with everything going on, finding time to train can been tough. But I found hiring a running coach has helped a lot. Having someone properly structure and oversee my training and to be able to create and adapt a schedule each day helps a ton. I typically do most of my training at night once the kids are all in bed and sleeping. I’ve tried mornings, but nights have always been what works for me. I have a “garage gym” so everything I need is in it, including obstacles. This set up allows me to have no excuses, it’s all right there and once the kids are in bed it’s an easy enough transition if I don’t have the ability to go elsewhere.
My wife is very good about keeping a calendar on the fridge and writing down all our daily plans. So kids events, appointments, work meetings, or other miscellaneous items are all put on there. It helps minimize surprises and gives us good template each day and also helps us plan ahead. From there I have a list of events I want to do for the year. Normally that's a list that keeps being added to as the year goes.
Incorporating the Home Team
I do a lot of events within driving distance of our home and typically attend these alone or with a friend. But whenever a race requires more time away from home or a plan the family comes a long and we make a vacation of it. In 2019, for example, we spent a week in Nashville with the whole family for an event. On another trip, my wife and I went to Sweden for a race, while the kids remained stateside staying with family. These situations allow for me to pursue athletic competition, while also providing the opportunity for us all to see a new place together. I feel fortunate when I am able to travel with my family by my side and enjoy different states and countries.
My family and work come first, but I love competing and living a healthy lifestyle. It’s not always easy and there are days that I just can’t train due to more important things. That’s okay, I keep it all in perspective and remember that life happens.
Family Choice: Maple UnTapped pure maple syrup on pancakes when we travel!