Even as a personal trainer and exercise junky myself, I’m cool with the fact that exercise isn’t everyone’s #1 priority. I know that we’re all busy, we have lots to juggle and we can sometimes struggle with getting to the gym. I struggle with it too sometimes. But before I even get into all the ways you can get fit even if exercise isn’t your thing, I’m going to offer you some tough love.
You’re an adult, and sometimes adults do things they don’t necessarily want to do because it’s in their best interest, right? I mean, I didn’t want to pay my rent this month, but I’d rather pay than be kicked out of my beautiful apartment.
Exercise is good for you. It’s good for your body, your mind and your soul. Taking up exercise is also good for your family, your co-workers, your significant other, your dog, your cat, that jerk who cut you off in traffic, the person who cut you in line at the bank, it’s good for your self-esteem and confidence, it’s good for your energy levels and can help squash food cravings.
There are a million reasons why you should start exercising, so as an adult, no matter if you love it or hate it, you should probably do it. Even if you think exercise is the spawn of Satan, if you value yourself at all, you’ll start treating exercise like a necessity regardless of how you feel about it.
Easier said than done, right? I feel you. So in this article I’m going to talk about the top four excuses people use for not exercising and how we can squash them asap.
1. “I really want to exercise…I just can’t find the motivation to get up and do it.”
Here’s a little more tough love for you: If you feel like you wish you exercised more or if you put it in your planner and still don’t follow through, it’s not lack of motivation to exercise because wanting it and wishing for it actually proves that you’re motivated. You have the desire to start, but you’re still not doing it and it’s because something stop is stopping you from taking action.
You’ll have to do some thinking here, but what’s actually stopping you?
Maybe you think you need to devote HOURS to working out. You don’t- we’ll talk more about this later.
Maybe you don’t know what to do when you get to the gym. You can hire a trainer (lots will give you a free session to begin) or do a little research online and find a program that takes the guess work out.
Maybe you hate your current exercise routine. There are thousands of programs to choose from. You’re not married to one exercise plan forever and always. Change it up!
So what’s your reason for not making it happen? Again, lack of motivation isn’t the actual reason here. If you want it and wish for it, you’re motivated. What’s that ‘something else’ that’s holding you back and what can you do to get moving in the right direction again?
2. “I don’t care about losing weight”
Weight loss isn’t the only reason to exercise. In fact, exercise has a much less impact on weight loss than most people think. While exercise certainly does help the process along, it’s not the main driver for weight loss (that would be nutrition and mindset). That said, there are plenty of reasons to exercise that have nothing to do with weight loss, like: decreasing the risk of diseases and health conditions like high cholesterol, diabetes, stroke, certain types of cancer and cardiovascular diseases, increasing longevity, improving mood (just 15 minutes of walking can seriously help shift your mood), increasing energy levels, improving sleep, and improving your sex life.
Kinda makes you want to get that booty moving, huh?
3. “The gym is too intimidating” or “I need to lose weight before I join a gym”
Who says you need a gym to start exercising? You can workout at home, in your backyard, in your kitchen, at the park, at the beach, and there are literally thousands of at home DVDs or On Demand exercise programs to choose from. The gym environment isn’t for everyone, and that’s OK. Put on a home workout and commit to at least 5 minutes to start. You don’t have to finish the entire workout, or you can do only your favorite exercises. In other words, make the workout work for you!
If DVDs or On Demand workouts aren’t your thing, grab my HIIT workout program Metabolic Meltdown. You’ll get 49 workouts that are all 20 minutes or less and require just your bodyweight and sometimes a set of dumbbells. You can do these workouts anywhere, anytime.
In terms of losing weight before joining a gym, conquer that fear and get you butt to the gym! You’ll find all different shapes and sizes once you walk in those doors. Get a free trial (most gyms have those now) and see how the gym feels for you. Finding your home gym is like finding a therapist…you have to feel comfortable, feel connected and feel like the environment works for you. Shop around a bit then get goin!
4. “I don’t have time or energy to focus on exercise”
Of all the people I talk to who use this reason as a means to not exercise, it’s most often because they think they need to work out for an hour plus to make it count. If you’ve been following my stuff for any length of time or are a part of my Wicked Fueled Facebook group (it’s FREE btw), you know that I think HIIT workouts are the bee’s knees. 15-20 minutes is all you really need.
When you think about it, even though 15-20 minutes might not seem like “enough”, it is, especially if you can commit to doing it consistently. 15-20 minutes 2-3 times per week certainly trumps not doing anything at all. Go outside and walk for 10-15 minutes after work before you do anything else. Get down on the floor and do some pushups or stretching while you’re waiting for dinner to cook. Run around the park with your kids. Any little bit counts. Just get moving.
Movement is movement and it usually has a snowball effect. Once you start reaping the benefits of just a bit more movement, you’ll start craving even more. Remember, too, that exercise actually helps us increase our energy levels so if you’re feeling blah, get moving!
A little something is always better than nothing.
Finding ways to be active and fit extra movement in throughout the day is crucial to your overall health and well being. Exercise is actually something that needs to happen for you and it doesn’t matter if it’s in a gym or at home. It doesn’t matter if it’s lifting weights or going for a walk. Just start. Commit to at least 5 minutes a few times each week and watch it build overtime.