5 Excuses Not to Workout and Solutions to Help Motivate You

There are days when you are tired. There are days when you are busy. There are days when you are in charge of watching the kids.  I understand this, and I know what you’re thinking: Skipping just one workout can’t hurt, can it? Believe it or not, it can: Missing even a single workout can create this lack of commitment and a downward spiral, increasing the likelihood that you’ll skip another workout by 61 percent, according to British researchers.

So, what are you supposed to do if you are really motivated to workout but you are so overwhelmed with all that you have going on in your life? Exercise anyway. Even if you’ve skipped 30 days (or 60 days) of workouts, you can get back most of what you lost in as little as 6 weeks, according to a study by Swedish researchers. Follow the tips below to combat five of the most used excuses and get your workouts back on schedule.

Excuse: You’re too tired by the end of the day.

Solution: First, be smarter in the way you fuel your body in the afternoon. Substitute your high-carb, energy-spiking granola bar or flavored yogurt snack for an energy-sustaining protein shake, or a handful of nuts or sesame seeds. Next, get some accountability….workout with a friend or make sure that you have an accountability partner or group for support.  This support can be in person or online…however you find it, make sure you get it.  

Excuse: You don’t have time to workout….not even an hour.

Solution: Whoever said that your workout has to take an hour—or even half an hour? Less than 10 minutes of high intensity interval training (HIIT) completed within a workout lasting less than half an hour can improve aerobic capacity and exercise tolerance (i.e., stamina) in just a couple weeks, according to a recent study at McMaster University. Just think how fit you can get if every minute in your workout revolved around HIIT? If you are wondering if this works or not, stop wasting time and start benefiting by signing up for Beachbody on Demand.  There are hundreds of workouts that are HIIT type workouts for you to try out for free (30 day free trial).

Excuse: The workout seems too difficult.

Solution: Now’s the time to listen to and get to know your body and the signs your body gives you. You should feel invigorated after your workout, not crushed and defeated. When you push yourself and your body is not ready for it, you make the exercise less effective and risk injury.  Regulate the difficulty in your current workout by lowering the weight, reducing the number of reps, or increasing the rest between sets. Many exercises in workouts can also be modified (for example, elevating your hands on a box during pushup, or not going so low during a squat or lunge), allowing you to work the same muscles without adjusting and compromising your form.

Excuse: You are on vacation and don’t know the area you are visiting.

Solution: If you’re on the road in an unfamiliar town and don’t want to seek out a gym, see if your hotel has an in-house fitness center. Some higher end hotels will even set you up with workout clothes and a fresh pair of running shoes for just $5, and will also take you on a group run if you’re interested. If you still want to go at it on your own…..search MapMyRun, RunKeeper, and USA Track and Field for local, user-rated running routes.

Excuse: You can’t exercise and watch your kiddos at the same time.

Solution: If your kiddos are very young and require constant supervision and you have a supportive spouse, you’ll likely need to plan your daily workouts to happen in the AM while the wee ones are asleep.  It might take some time to adjust to this new schedule, but I can guarantee you from personal experience, this might be the only way to get your workout in and just think how good you will feel afterwards and how you will be less cranky and a better mom knowing you invested time into yourself before tackling the day.   Older kids at home are a blessing.  As long as you explain to them that you need this time to yourself, they might allow you to carve out some exercise minutes in another room, but you’ll still need to be home. That’s where it makes so much sense to take advantage of streaming services (like Beachbody On Demand).

I hope these solutions help you become more consistent in your workouts so you can be your optimal self!