After many years in the fitness world I’ve heard them all, but some excuses for not exercising just crop up again and again. I have picked a few of the most commonly used below. Which one (or more) of these excuses do you use? And be honest now… As they say acceptance is the first step to recovery!
1) I’d exercise more but for the weather…
Unless you hadn’t noticed at least one third of our calendar year the weather is pretty foul. Unless you plan to emigrate to sunnier climes – this is our lot and we need to make the most of it, otherwise we are writing off a third of our exercise & outdoor life and consequently a third of our physique’s potential. Besides, are you really that much more active in summer? Where do most Irish people go on a great summer’s evening? Not to the tennis court but straight to the beer garden! If you really can’t face the elements there is no end of choice of gyms, indoor classes and home workouts to choose from!
2) It’s not our culture/lifestyle
We Irish like to revel in the ‘craic’ and how much fun we are…how we aren’t ‘fitness obsessed bores’ like the Californians. But, isn’t the craic (aka drinking to excess) sometimes just tiresome? If boozing is our culture – I’d say we are long overdue for a cultural shift. There is nothing boring about feeling healthy – or looking after yourself. In fact, I’d say there is nothing more boring than the drunk and overweight slob that there seems to be in ready supply in our fair green Isle. There is plenty of room for having fun, and being healthy – they are not mutually exclusive concepts!
3) I’m too tired
Now this is an interesting one. I certainly can accept that sometimes we really do feel just too exhausted to exercise. However, the ironic thing (something that anyone who exercises knows) its often precisely through lack of activity that we feel so drained… and that by exercising we totally invigorate our body and mind, we sleep far better – meaning we are more rested and energised with each and every passing day…
4) I’m too busy
Too busy to exercise? So busy that you can’t take a half hour from your full schedule? I bet though you can find the time to watch an hour of TV…to chat away on the phone or to browse the net. This is the mother of all excuses. You MAKE the time to exercise. And if your life really is that full – it’s even more imperative you keep your body fit to meet the demands of that busy life of yours.
5) I can’t afford it…
Now this excuse is a bit rich (excuse the pun!). There are a million (is that another pun?!) ways to exercise that don’t cost a cent or next to nothing. To name a few… walking, running, swimming and cycling (think of the money you’ll save on petrol!) circuits in public parks or just home exercise…Money, or lack thereof, is never a true obstacle to fitness.
6) Now isn’t the right time…
‘I‘ll start exercising when things calm down’, ‘once I have lost a bit of weight’, ‘on Monday’….You can insert any amount of excuses here but they all amount to the same result –not exercising!
Simply put – there is no time like present to get off your butt! There will always be something ‘in the way’ if we allow there to be. It’s up to you to move such obstacles aside. Naturally from time to time we will lose our way but you need to keep an overall sense of commitment to exercise no matter what is going on. A fall of the wagon is ok. Never being on it at all is not!
7) My friend let me down…
You must take 100% responsibility for yourself and your fitness but all too often we blame others for our lack of exercise. If you team up for evening walks or morning sessions at the gym with someone you know to be unreliable, it should come as no surprise when they keep cancelling. Does that then mean you don’t get up and out? Pointing the finger of blame at someone else is a convenient cop out. If you want to partner up with someone for exercise make sure it is with someone who is committed and reliable and if they do cancel – go it alone!
STOP THE EXCUSES!
It’s time to ditch the excuses, scrap the delay tactics, and to get your butt off the couch. Once you get into an exercise regime you will quite literally not know yourself and you will wonder how on earth you expended so much energy creating excuses to avoid it!
Gillian hynes is a NCEHS qualified personal trainer and STOTT trained pilates instructor. Working in the fitness industry since 2005, she has helped a wide variety of clients to achieve their health & fitness goals. For more information visit www.gillianhynes.com or Tel: 087 2028062