Don’t feel like working out? Here’s how I conquer my excuses

For the longest time, it was a struggle to squeeze in just three 45-minute to one-hour workouts per week. I had “more important” things to do on the weekend, and after work, the last thing I wanted to do was exert myself beyond sitting on the couch and eating some chips.

Eventually I took a step back, thought about what my excuses were and whether they were actual deal-breakers. Most of the time, they weren’t. Got your big girl (boy) panties on? Here are five ways I get past my own laziness.

Excuse one: I don’t have enough time. Fortunately, Beach Body and others – even Youtube – have 30-minute and shorter workouts nowadays. For me, this was way more doable than P90X’s hour-long routines, but I still have time for those on the weekend if I don’t feel like running.

Excuse two: I’m too tired. Guess what? Even on days when I feel like I can pass out right after getting home from work, surviving a workout is not only possible, it’s pretty darned easy. Once your blood starts pumping, the energy shows up, and so do the endorphins. I wish I didn’t have to get up before dawn for work, because if I didn’t, I’d work out in the morning when it is easier. Check out this blog for more inspiration.

Excuse three: I just don’t feel like it. This has been by far the hardest hurdle for me – my own brain. For me, achieving mind over matter has been about keeping my eyes on the prize. It’s about envisioning myself thin, toned and muscular. It’s about picturing myself with more energy. And once I began seeing hints of these results, working out was no longer drudgery – it became an addiction!

Excuse four: My [fill in the blank] hurts. This is tricky and depends on what is injured. If you cracked your spine from a “rock climbing accident” (i.e. – you tripped over an invisible chair after doing 20 Jello shots), don’t work out, dumbass. If it’s something far less serious, modify.

About a year ago I strained one of my hamstrings while doing a martial arts cardio workout. That pretty much made every workout for the next few months after that a challenge because most cardio that I do requires use of my legs. Fortunately, in my case, it wasn’t serious enough to warrant a doctor or physical therapy, so I avoided the workout that caused the injury and modified moves that required exertion of that muscle. Similarly, I tweaked my knee following a long run recently, so I did the usual RICE routine and avoided any sort of plyometrics (workouts with a lot of jumping) or running the next few days. Arm injury? Looks like it’s leg day!

Excuse five: I’d rather do [fill in the blank] instead. This kind of relates to the mental block and the time management excuses. I happen to really like gaming, so it’s been a battle over the years between that addiction and my desire for better health as to what dominates my free time. I’m not gonna lie. Gaming wins out a LOT. But I try to go back to my strategies related to excuse three when I face this issue. It tends to give fitness a fighting chance.

 

What excuses get in the way of your workouts?

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