Excuses, excuses: Don’t let them derail your workouts

Paula Reece
Paula Reece

When there’s something you really don’t want to do, you make excuses. My dog ate my homework. My alarm didn’t go off.

When it comes to fitness and exercise, though, your excuses could have some merit.  The trick is to identify your excuse, then figure out a solution. This  could be the way to put those excuses on a shelf and head to the gym.

People have been surveyed to find out why they don’t exercise on a regular basis. Many of the same excuses come up again and again. Do any of these excuses fit you?

“I don’t know how to exercise.” This common fitness excuse is real. People don’t think a brisk walk or gardening could be considered exercise. You know getting up and off the couch to do something physical and getting you body moving is exercise, to a point. Not knowing what to do when it comes to a health club could be different.  Weight machines, cardio equipment and group exercise classes could require some instruction. The solution: Make learning part of the fun. Take a getting started class or try a small group training class in which a trainer will help you every step of the way.  Like many sports, exercise can take time to learn and master. Make it your ambition to exercise and learn.

“I just don’t have time.” This one is classic. When we don’t make time to care for our health, we could lose it. Everyone these days is busy, from the stay-at-home mom to the business executive. We all have 24 hours in our day to make sure we take time for ourselves. The solution: Schedule exercise as an appointment you just can’t miss. Remember that even if you can’t do a full 30 minutes, some exercise is better than nothing.

“I’ll lose weight and then join a health club.” While health clubs might seem intimidating, maybe you just haven’t found the right one. The solution: Find a place that fits your personality, location and personal goals. Since it’s a place you’ll be going to numerous times a week, you’ll want to find a place where you feel comfortable.  Everyone starts at the beginning of their own fitness journey. You’ll be surprised there are people of every age, size and shape to welcome you.

“It’s so boring.” Doing the same type of exercise day after day can become boring, prompting you to go through your workout on auto pilot. The solution: Shake it up, baby. Try something new. Try a variety of classes. Do different workouts on different days. Find a workout buddy who holds you accountable and makes it more fun. Turn your workout into something social.

“I’ve tried exercise, and I keep quitting.” If this applies to you, you haven’t found the exercise you love. Perhaps you did too much too soon and your muscles were too sore to keep it up, Maybe you didn’t identify the goals you were hoping to achieve. The solution: Set goals and measuring points when starting an exercise program. There’s an incentive when the scale goes down, energy levels go up and your clothes fit better. A key factor in starting a program is to start slowly. It’s miserable to be so sore you can’t move. A little muscle soreness is good, but go slow and build up.

Identify the fitness excuse you use most often. Then find something you love to do and make a commitment you won’t quit. Fitness isn’t a destination, but rather a lifelong journey.

“You can have results or excuses. Not both.”  — Anonymous