Last week we touched on too much exercise. This week we’re visiting the opposite extreme, not enough or no exercise. Over the last 22 years I think I’ve heard every reason for not exercising from “I don’t have time,” to “I don't like exercise.” The biggest reason clients give me is that they just can’t fit it into their lives.
I know life is busy and it seems even more busy now than even a few years ago. But if we don’t make the time to take care of ourselves today, what amount of time will we spend in doctors offices, hospitals or bedridden later? Sorry if I sound like a downer or if I’m hitting a sore spot. I just want you to live your best life, to feel healthy, strong, pain and disease free for as long as possible.
First, let’s address the first most common reason “I don’t have time.” I understand completely, hours and days fly by. But if we want to make changes to the health and shape of our body, we need to get past this excuse. When you’re thinking about lack of time, ask yourself a few questions.
How can I incorporate more movement into my day? Example: Can I walk or ride my bike to work, the train or the store? Can I park farther away from entrances to buildings? Can I get up 10 minutes early to do some squats and pushups? Can I just go for a walk after dinner? All of these things add up. Consistency is the key.
Have you ever done a time audit on your average day? Recording everything you spend time on including watching TV, scrolling the internet or chatting on the phone? How many minutes get used up doing these types of activities? Instead of chatting on the phone, ask your friend to walk with you and get two things done at once.
Read my blog post How to Find An Extra Hour in Everyday here.
Now let’s dive into the reason “I don't like exercise.” What don’t you like about it? Moving our bodies is a gift every single day. If you don’t move your body now, it’s going to get more challenging later on. Now is the time to get honest with yourself. The more you move the more comfortable you’ll become. If you have pain, I find that most clients lessen pain with movement. You don’t have to run or do hardcore workouts. Just start moving on a regular basis. Ask yourself, “What do I enjoy doing?” Walk in nature, dance, swim, join an exercise class or a sports group. If you’re social, make it something social. Invite a friend to become your workout partner. Make the best use of your time. Listen to a podcast or book on tape while on cardio equipment or going for a walk or run.
Start slowly and work on consistency more than duration. If you promise yourself you’ll walk four days a week, start with just 10-15 minutes each time. Get comfortable with that and make it a habit. Then add on a few minutes until you reach 20-30 minutes each day. Give your body time to get used to the movement. If you haven't done something in a while, you may feel sore or uncomfortable at first, but that will subside quickly.
Some people do well with checking off a box. Keep a calendar or chart or make a spreadsheet. You might even feel a slight dopamine rush when you know you get to see those days of exercise add up. Choose what works best for you. This is your program, your health and wellbeing and your life.
If you have questions or need help, email me at email@example.com. I’m happy to answer any questions you have. I have two openings for Accountability Coaching and Holistic Private Coaching. Send me an email to set up a free discovery call to see if we’re a good match to work together. Click here to learn more about how I can help you achieve your goals.