March 11, 2021 4 min read
When you’re making the effort to get into fitness, you become your own worst enemy. It’s just so easy to quit or skimp on your exercise routine because it’s—well, just not fun. Your mind starts racing with a myriad of common excuses for not working out. We’ve all been there, so let’s go through some of these excuses, so you can recognize and avoid them when they creep into your mind.
This excuse is an absolute classic because, sure, it seems reasonable. The weather is totally out of your control, right? How can you go work out when it’s raining or during the winter? This takes some preventative measures before the thought crosses your mind. Early on, while your motivation is still at a high, invest in some home exercise equipment so that you don’t have an excuse when the rainy days do roll in. Something like a home stationary bike is not only effective, but also very easy to jump onto and start exercising. This convenience can be a lifesaver when you’re having a day when you just have to force yourself to get started, but are good to go once you actually get moving.
There’s a small paradox when it comes to exercise. While your muscles may feel tired and exhausted from prior workouts, the best way to solve this is by exercising as the increase in your heart pumping and blood flowing carries more oxygen to your brain, muscles, and tissues. This makes you feel much sharper and more energized and promotes the release of neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins—all of which improve your mood and make you feel good.
So, when you’re feeling sluggish or apathetic, start by just making yourself get up and start with something easy. Start by walking, biking, or practicing yoga to warm up and re-energize your body before getting into a proper routine. Note that this is no replacement for getting enough sleep and eating right.
Gym memberships can vary in costs and, over time, those membership subscriptions will add up to a hefty bill. That’s a reasonable reason to not want to go to your local gym, but it’s still no excuse not to work out! Much like avoiding bad weather, a good investment is home gym equipment so that you needn’t continue to pay for it continuously and you have the equipment readily accessible at any time. Of course, many cardio exercises like running and walking are convenient because you can just take a jog around the neighborhood free of charge.
A common excuse for not working out typically stemming from the stress of a burdensome schedule and a reluctance to give up your free time for more hard work when you could instead just melt away into your couch. Rather than figuring out how to find the time, instead you can think of how you could make the time. If you’re busy during the day, home gym equipment may once again save you by allowing you to work out in the evening after it gets dark and the public gyms have closed.
Alternatively, you could adjust your schedule. Waking up 30 minutes earlier to get an early morning workout can be a great way to wake up and start your day energized and confident that you can tackle all your other responsibilities. If you’re a parent busy watching your kids during the day, why not do some exercises that they can participate in? Many kids just want to mimic their parents, so something like yoga where they can try to copy your poses is a great way to get your exercise in while keeping your kids preoccupied.
Exercise is never the most exciting, but it is possible to enjoy your workout routine. If you’re feeling bored with your exercise regimen, it may be time to start switching it up. Doing the same routine over and over day after day will quickly become a monotonous, tedious chore. Develop a few routines for yourself that focus on a different goal or group of muscles and cycle through them throughout the week. Maybe you focus on building muscles three days of the week, while the other four are tailored towards weight loss. This will keep things fresh and allow you to rest one group of muscles while still working out another.
If variety isn’t adding enough spice to your life, then adding something like music or a podcast for you to focus your mind on while your body goes through the motions on autopilot can help you get through the tedium of exercise. Maybe you should exercise with a friend to keep you company and accountable. While exercising with someone in person isn’t viable during COVID, you could instead start a friendly competition to see who makes the most progress. Having to regularly report your progress to another person will keep you accountable and motivated to keep going and friendly competition can be just plain fun.
A common conundrum amongst beginners is feeling too self-conscious to start exercising, but not exercising makes them feel even more self-conscious. No one wants to be embarrassed or draw attention to themselves if they make a mistake, so if you’re finding a public gym too intimidating, get started with something easier like walking. It’s familiar, you’ve been doing it all your life, and cardio is always conducive towards weight loss so long as your heart gets pumping and your blood starts flowing.
If you desire privacy or some practice with equipment before having to perform in front of others, then we must once more recommend home gym equipment. It gives you the privacy and comfort of your home to get familiar with different machines and tools until you’re comfortable enough to use them around others.
If exercising feels overly challenging, you should re-evaluate your routine and goals. Perhaps your goal is a bit too ambitious and needs to be broken up into more reasonable chunks that seem more obtainable in a shorter period of time. For example, while you may want to lose a certain amount of weight, you should still set milestones for yourself so that you can recognize the progress you’re making and celebrate your victories. Rewarding your efforts will bolster your confidence and keep you motivated to continue with your exercises until you’ve obtained the final milestone.
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