The top 8 excuses for not exercising…
…And how to overcome them
We all know that working out is good for us. In fact, exercising is one of the BEST things you can do for your mental health. Unfortunately, many things can keep us from working out and there are times when life gets in the way of our best intentions. Whatever your reason may be, we’ve identified the top 8 excuses for not exercising, and what you can do to overcome them.
I’m too tired
Although you feel tired now, exercising actually gives you energy. It may take you a couple weeks to really feel it; but, your body will start releasing endorphins that help you feel good and more energised. The earlier in the day you exercise, you the more likely you are to stick with it. Although, if you’re not a morning person, try to exercise during the part of the day when you know you feel your best.
I don’t have time/I’m too busy
How much television are you watching? Try doing your exercises while watching your shows. Or record them so you can skip the ads, and use that additional time to exercise. Can’t do a full 30 minutes or so at one time? Break it up into 10 minute increments and spread them throughout the day. If that still doesn’t work, see how you can work it into activities you’re already doing. Cycle to work instead of taking the bus (or at least cycle half way). Try walking a little more briskly while you’re walking in. Exercise doesn’t have to be time consuming.
I don’t get a break from the kids
Take the kids with you! Kids aren’t getting enough exercise as it is these days. You can walk laps around the park while they play, or jump rope nearby. Go cycling with the kids when the weather is nice. While you work on your fitness, you’re teaching them the importance of staying fit at the same time.
Exercise is boring
Working out doesn’t have to be boring, find an activity you enjoy! Or while exercising, trying listening to a book on tape, a podcast, or your favourite music playlist; you can even watch TV! Also, if you find running boring, try dancing instead. Dislike yoga? Try a boxing class. Play around with different types of exercise and activities you can pair up with them to make them more enjoyable.
I hate the gym
Working out does not mean you have to go the gym. Gyms can definitely be expensive and intimidating. See what exercises you can do on your own, like walking, hiking, or running. Try going to a yoga studio instead of a gym; or a dance studio. Play around with different options and see what makes you feel more comfortable.
I’m too old
No, you are not too old. Studies have shown beginning an exercise regime can be helpful even for people who are 90 and starting for the first time. It’s all about starting on your own personal level, not someone else’s. In fact, the more you exercise, the more likely you are to prevent injury during future falls, and it staves off muscle loss.
I’m already thin
Just because you’re thin does not mean you’re healthy. There are more benefits to exercise than just how much you weigh. You could still be suffering from high levels of cholesterol, high body fat percentages, etc. By exercising, you’re ensuring your overall body is healthy.
I’m too fat
As we age, we tend to gain weight. That’s just nature, our metabolism slows down and it’s harder to keep weight off. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Start off with something easy and work your way up. Go for a walk or cycle around the block. The more you move, the more kilos you’ll shed, and the easier it will be to get around and do more difficult levels of exercise in the future.
Want to learn more about how you can use exercise along with scientifically backed psychological exercises? Check out MyMoodandMe, whom we’ve teamed up with to bring an awesome new programme starting soon!
Nicole Paulie is a Counselling Psychologist, and co-author of “How to be Happy and Healthy – The seven natural elements of mental health.” She provides therapy in the Dublin city area. Contact us to learn more or to book an appointment.