I have had the hardest time starting to exercise more than anything else. However, once I get going, I am feeling good and want to do more. Yet, actually starting is like pulling teeth for me. Here’s why, and I’m sure some of you can relate. I work 40 hour weeks like the average person.
I’m in a cubicle for 8 hours a day and by the time I get home, my motivation and energy levels have dropped very low. Sometimes I feel like I have to dig really deep to build up a speck of motivation that is enough to want to workout. Even when my spouse tries to motivate me, I can’t seem to get myself moving.
Part of me wants to workout every day because after sitting for 8 hours daily, I know that I need to move my body. I’ve decided that on the days that I absolutely don’t feel like working out, I need to come up with ways that will sort of force me to get started. Getting started is the hardest part. Once I start doing a routine whether it is HIIT, lifting weights, or yoga, I want to keep going and even push myself harder.
Reasons I Make for Not Starting to Exercise
- I’m tired!
- I’m mentally drained from work
- I’ll work out tomorrow – promise.
As you can see, the reasons above are weak. At the end of the day, I do feel drained and exhausted from the day. I can imagine people with more hectic schedules feeling the same if not worse. A couple of my co-workers struggle with the same issues. After a full day of work, they go home to their family which means kid’s soccer practices, Girl Scouts, and more.
There doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day. However, we can eek out at least 30 to 45 minutes a day for ourselves by turning off the tv and the computers. It can be done. So below are ways to just START. Believe me, it can be a struggle, but we can do it!
Make Sure You Have Variety in Your Workouts
Do anything and everything you like to do when it comes to physical activity. If that means surfing, riding your bicycle, walking, whatever — add any and all to your options for fitness. As for me, I become bored quickly if I get stuck doing the same workout all the time. I don’t have a gym membership so I need a variety of home fitness dvds in my fitness library.
I also follow a few personal trainers on YouTube that put out consistent information on health and fitness as well as new workouts. Some of my favorites include:
Check out a motivating (and humorous) workout from Tony Horton’s channel:
Do Just 5 Reps of Anything
This is important for me. Getting started is the hardest part right? Do you realize that it is all mental? You tell yourself you’re tired, exhausted, don’t have time, etc. Pick one exercise: squats, dumbbell curls, push-ups — and do just 5 reps.
Notice how you feel after that. You did them no problem, right? That means you can do more and 90% of the time just doing 5 reps is what gets me started. I took action and broke that mental barrier of excuses. Once I’ve started I pick out a workout to jump into.
Note: Always have some go-to workouts you enjoy doing for days you are really struggling to get started. After you do your 5 reps, you can go right into a workout.
Set a Goal with a Horrible Consequence
I picked this up from an article I read years ago in which someone had a goal of losing weight. While setting his weight loss goal, he also put into place a consequence if his goal wasn’t met. If he did not achieve his weight loss goal, he had to send a donation to an organization he disliked and would never support.
See how that works? If you did the same or something similar, the chances are much greater you would stick to your goal or deal with giving away your hard earned cash to something you dislike (or whatever consequence you choose.)
Lastly, find your motivation wherever you can. Maybe you admire someone who always has a positive attitude and is passionate about health and fitness. Tony Horton is one of my motivators.
Or maybe you know someone like yourself who turned things around in their life. Plenty of people went from couch potato to fitness lovers and struggled along the way; learn from them.
You can break the mental barriers and get started exercising every day!