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Use these 4 exercise excuse busters to break through the endless excuses and turn those good intentions into healthy living actions.
It’s too hot. It’s too cold. I’m too weak. I’m too tired. My sock has a hole in it. My favorite workout shirt is dirty. I don’t want to miss my favorite show. It’s too early. It’s too late. I’ll do it tomorrow.
The excuses to avoid exercise are endless. I don’t know about you, but I could make an excuse out of just about anything to avoid a workout.
But I’ve seen the results of my excuses – Guilt. Regret. Laziness. Weight gain.
In spending more effort coming up with excuses than actually taking any action to workout, I essentially trained myself to be an avoider. Instead of continuously moving toward my goals, I was basically just sidestepping them, never even inching closer toward being healthier or more fit.
I taught myself to think that it was easier to avoid hard things than to just give them a try.
Easier, maybe. But better? Heck no!
The list of excuses will never end, but you have the power to fight back against them! Here are 4 exercise excuse busters to get you back on track and moving toward your health and fitness goals.
4 Exercise Excuse Busters
#1 – Be Intentional
I don’t have time.
This is one of the most common excuses out there. But, really, how many people do you know that have spare time on their hands? I sure don’t know of many!
The thing about time is that we make time for the things we value.
If you want to lose weight and live healthier enough, you will want to make time for exercise. You will see the value it brings to your life and your family and you will make it a priority.
If you are waiting for that extra time to magically pop up into your life before you exercise, you are going to be waiting a long time.
Look at your time commitments for the week. Schedule your workouts and make them as non-negotiable as a business meeting.
And, at the very least, if you really can’t squeeze full workout sessions into your week, you can weave fitness into your day.
- Park farther away at the grocery store.
- Do 50 jumping jacks before you get into the shower.
- Do a plank before you get into bed at night.
- If you have a desk job, set a phone timer to remind you to get up and walk to the bathroom or the water fountain throughout the day.
If you live in a world of “I’ll start tomorrow”s, then you’ll be wasting a whole lot of todays.
#2 – Be Consistent
I’m too tired.
Boy, aren’t we all? I don’t even have kids right now, but I’m sure good at filling my schedule to the brim and pushing myself to accomplish as much as I can.
Everyone has different reasons behind their tired, but the fact of the matter is, life is exhausting.
And the last thing I feel like doing is exercising and expending more energy when I have so little left to give.
I used to think the best way to fix my tiredness was to crash on the couch and watch TV. But did vegging on the couch ever refresh me and give me more energy? Not. Even. Once.
Guess what I have found to be the best cure for exhaustion? Regular exercise.
One workout now and then is not going to do it, but if you can work out consistently, even if it’s just a daily 10-minute walk in the beginning, you will find that while watching TV tends to drain your energy, exercise gives you more energy.
And you will probably find that you are also able to think more clearly, focus more easily, and get things done more quickly too.
Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do.”
One workout at a time, make exercise a part of your normal schedule. The more you make it a habit, the less you have to fight your excuses to make it happen. Train yourself to do it on autopilot.
And don’t forget to look at your diet if you are feeling tired! Too much sugar and caffeine can send you on a high, but then cause you to crash and make you feel sluggish and exhausted.
#3 – Get Creative
I don’t like to exercise.
Oh, I get it. Believe me. I spent the better part of my young life hating every kind of exercise, including walking.
I also had the idea in my head that exercise had to feel like torture. That is a very limiting belief!
Get creative and choose ways to exercise that you will actually enjoy. Try new things, step out of your comfort zone, and think outside of the typical “workout” box.
It doesn’t have to be running, aerobics, or strength training circuit machines to count as exercise. Go dancing, skip with your kids, do yard work, play Wii Fit, or chase your dog.
Get specific about the things you don’t like so that you can fix those things.
- If you hate going to the gym, find ways to exercise at home.
- If you hate being hot, bump up the A/C or get a fan.
- If you are bored, watch Netflix while you are on the treadmill or listen to an audiobook or podcast.
- If the exercise you’ve been doing hurts your joints, pick something lower impact like swimming.
There are so many things you easily fix to make exercise more enjoyable if you just get creative.
#4 – Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
I’m not as strong/fast/fit/skinny as that person.
The comparison trap is an easy one to fall into.
Comparison is the thief of joy and it stops your progress.
I’ll never be able to run/swim/bike/lift/look like this person, so why even try?
I have this runner friend who runs 3 miles every single day. That used to seem utterly impossible to me and for a long time, it made me not even want to try. I told myself she was just one of those people that running came naturally to and I certainly wasn’t one of them, so I shouldn’t even attempt it.
When I started running, it took me 6 months to train for my first 5k (3.1 miles). Every step was hard. It pushed me. It wasn’t comfortable and every time I saw what my couch to 5k plan was asking me to do, I didn’t think I’d be able to do it.
But, one day at a time, I did it.
It is now 5 years later and I run 3 miles three times a week.
What used to seem impossible is now my normal.
Comparison can also stop you from trying new things. It’s the voice that tells you that you not to go because you don’t want to look stupid or weak in front of other people.
Be okay with not being good at things.
Try new things! Join a Zumba, try playing tennis, break out your shoes and try running a couch to 5k program. You never know when you’ll find your new favorite activity.
Just don’t expect perfection the first time you try!
Show yourself grace. You are most likely not going to be good at something new. Give yourself time to learn and get rid of that burden of doing it to look good in front of other people.
Do it for the exercise. Do it for the enjoyment. Do it for you!
(Chances are, all of the other people around will be way too worried about the way they look to be noticing you anyways!)
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