Your Excuses Become Your Barrier To Success
They are abundant, and they are frequent. We all get busy, and we all lose track of time. Instead of making time to exercise or eat well, we begin to generate a variety of excuses.
Now, if you know me, you know that I am not the personal trainer that yells at you, “suck it up buttercup, your excuses mean nothing to me, let’s go.” Okay, maybe I do say, “suck it up buttercup,” a few times, but you’ll never catch me saying it without laughing.
Instead, I am the personal trainer who would much rather have a heart-to-heart with you and figure out what’s going on and how we can remedy the situation. I’d rather see you succeed than not, especially when it comes to excuses.
There’s only one problem with this part, and that is that it takes two to tango. I can offer you suggestions, but in the end, you are the one who has to put one foot in front of the other. My job is to help you feel confident in taking that first step.
Now, I understand excuses and understand there is no such thing as perfection. We’ve all been there. We’ve all had excuses about being busy and how our schedules are near impossible to keep consistent. And while our excuses might sound legitimate at the time, they might not be as bad as we make it out to be once we discuss our excuses with someone else.
There’s only one problem with excuses:
Our excuses are our barriers to success and to achieve success is to overcome our barriers.
It hurts me to write that. It hurts to reread it. It hurts to hear it out loud. But, it is so true.
I try my best to provide solutions or steps to solutions for each client.
Trust me when I say that I understand what it feels like to work all day long (for me, it’s up at 4 am and off by around 8:30 pm plus online work) while still performing chores, hobbies, getting plenty of sleep, and maintaining friendship and family relationships. Then throwing in workouts and meal planning and prepping on top of all that.
For each of my in-person and online personal training clients, there are several 10-minute workouts within the Reed’s Wellness and Fitness Training smartphone app via Trainerize that the client can access whenever they are on a time crunch. Each of these workouts are bodyweight workouts which mean that if they have no access to equipment, then there are no worries.
A “10-Minute Bodyweight Workout” might consist of 10 repetitions of each for 5 sets:
– Push-Ups (Variations for all abilities provided. Example: No-Cheat, Incline, Regular)
– Squat (Variations for all abilities provided. Example: Air Squat, Jump Squat, Single Leg Squat)
– Single Leg Deadlift with Reach
This also means that if they don’t have time for a 10-minute workout, then we won’t be sitting down to discuss “why did you miss your workout?“, but to instead examine time-management strategies. There is no excuse as to why one should miss a 10-minute workout. We all have 10-minutes in a day. Don’t believe me? Check to see how much time you spend on social media per day before stating that you don’t have 10-minutes.
The other scenario is when someone visits the doctor, and has been told that they have Type II Diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. All of a sudden, we begin to realize that we only have one body and that we can’t trade it in. So, we then make the time to exercise. Let’s just hope for the majority of you reading this; it doesn’t lead to a doctor providing you with bad news to get you started.
That’s why I have taken the liberty of listing the top 9 excuses for missing a workout and have provided you with a solution. All you have to do is take action. In the end, that’s what it boils down to, you taking action.
Let’s Get Started.
1. I Don’t Have Time.
We have all said this, but it is merely not true. It is all about prioritization. I know individuals who work 40-60+ hours per week and make it to the gym 4-5 days per week. I also know people who are not working or are part-time and struggle to complete a couple of workouts, if any at all. It all boils down to what is a priority to you. Once it becomes a priority to you (I’m not saying that you become a gym rat by any means), you will find ways to manage your time better.
I do understand busy schedules, though. My recommendation here is to grab a calendar or start using your smartphone’s calendar. If you have a busy day, plan for a quick and sweaty interval training workout like the one I mentioned above. On days you have more time in the gym, mark it in your calendar accordingly and don’t miss it just as if you wouldn’t miss a doctor’s appointment or business meeting.
It’s all about priority.
If what you have written down on your calendar is not a priority, it is the first thing to be removed from the schedule. Trust me.
Another option is to get up a little bit earlier. I get a lot of refusal from this idea in the beginning but think about it. Take 2-3 days a week and get up slightly earlier to get a workout in and sleep in on the other days. Your other option is to schedule your workouts on your off days. That is always an option. I meet with clients Monday thru Friday at 5 am before they go to work.
By the way, our workout does not have to last any more than 30-minutes. I have a ton of videos my clients, and I have performed with a variety of equipment on my YouTube channel that takes anywhere from 10 to 20-minutes.
Let’s say you do lack the time. If this is what you are saying, I would love to chat about your crazy schedule. 🙂 If this is the case, you have a few other options. These options might include you parking the car in the farthest spot versus close to the entrance, use the stairs versus escalators, and even walk from your current location to the next versus hopping in the car and driving down to the next block.
2. I’m too tired.
You may or may not know this, but working out will help cure fatigue and provide you with more energy throughout the day. I understand once you get home that you do not want to exercise. This is probably one of the most common reasons I hear individuals miss their workout when they say they are too tired and I get it.
If this is the case, there are a few options.
Option 1: Plan for a quick and sweaty workout.
Option 2: Join a gym that is on the way home.
Option 3: Invite a friend or your family to get active with you.
Your other option is to look into why you are tired. Are you sleeping enough? Are you eating enough? Are you eating the right foods? Are you drinking plenty of water? Are you stressed? All of these can take an impact on how tired you are. There’s always a reason why one is tired. Most commonly, it is poor nutrition and poor sleep.
Most commonly, it is poor nutrition and poor sleep. If you feel like both are spot on, have a physician look into your sleeping patterns and to see if you have any food intolerances.
If you don’t exercise, I bet that alone will help increase your stamina.
3. I’m too old.
Please. I have had client’s range all the way up to 92-years-old and kick-butt in the gym. Now, as we age, we begin to lose muscle, our balance is off, and we are more apt to falling. By incorporating exercising, we can overcome all of that. I wouldn’t recommend you hopping right into a weight-lifting program without experience, but I would recommend that if you are interested in exercise yet are apprehensive, that you should seek a personal trainer’s assistance. Look for a trainer who has experience with individual’s your age.
Moral of the story, you are never too old to exercise.
4. Personal trainers and gyms are too expensive.
I would disagree with both. I’ve heard of gyms like Planet Fitness being as cheap as $10/month. You could also check to see if the area you live in (condo, apartments, etc.) has a gym on the premises. If you attend college, you should only have to pay a small fee (like $15 for the semester) to use the gym.
Your other option is to buy some equipment for your home like I have some of my online personal training clients do. You’ll have it for the lifetime of the equipment.
Lastly, personal trainers can be expensive, and they can also not be so expensive. Your cheapest option will be to look for an online personal trainer. Just like I tell my clients, the goal is to educate you and have you use that newfound knowledge to continue on your own. The only time a client typically stays long-term is if they want to keep learning, they have specific goals (events, fat loss, muscle gain, etc.), or if they prefer having their workouts set-up for them so that they are not bored. You can probably find small group personal training classes near you that meet your budget or offers an introduction rate. I host several classes, but the benefit is that they are no larger than 5 individuals so that you can ask questions and learn as much as you can while you are there.
If you still think both are too expensive, well, you can always do bodyweight workouts at home and while you travel. I have a plethora of exercise and workout demonstrations on my YouTube channel. If all else fails, go for a nice walk or run. This requires little investment.
5. The Bachelor is coming on…
Workout while you watch it then. If you are at home, perform as many sets of 8 repetitions of push-ups, squats, and walk-outs as you can and then rest while the show is on. If you have a gym membership, hop on the cardio equipment and get to it. If all else, you can always record whatever show you are watching as well.
6. I’ve never exercised before.
Completely understandable and I love these individuals. These individuals really help me work on my communication and education skills when it comes to exercising.
Here’s the thing. If you have never stepped foot into a gym, then it is quite easy to not go inside one because of how much confidence you might lack. COMPLETELY UNDERSTANDABLE!
Want my recommendation? Go to the gym and have the staff give you a tour of the facility. You’ll quickly find out where everything is. You’ll also find that everyone at the gym is a diverse group of individuals. The second time you go to workout, throw in some headphones and do your thing.
Not sure what to do? Check out what I said about regarding personal trainers. Ask your gym if there is a personal trainer around to instruct you or offer advice. You can look at a variety of gyms who offer group training classes. These will be offered at a more cost-friendly price to one-on-one personal training. Lastly, you’ve always got online personal training.
Remember this: we are all there for the same reason as you — to be our best. The guy screaming to get those weights up — he’s there to be his best. The lady over in the corner knocking out goblet squats — she’s there to be her best. The couple on the treadmill side-by-side — yup, also there to be their best. Also, don’t forget that we all had to begin somewhere. We all walked in at some point and felt the same way you did.
Like it or not, we all have a place in the gym and we all belong there — even you. 🙂
7. I’m not motivated.
Between the time and motivation excuse, these are the two most common excuses. Most of the time, the answer for the individual who lacks motivation is that you haven’t found your “why” just yet. You have not been able to identify “why” you want to exercise or eat well.
Think about the individual I mentioned earlier who started exercising because their doctor told them they had Type II diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc. Anyone of these things should scare the crap out of you because any one of these risk factors can lead to an early death. Still not motivated? Think about your family and friends then.
Or even your little puppy.
8. I slipped up.
This one gets me every time. The “Welp, I slipped up, time to start over next [month, Monday, year]. This repetitive cycle leads to a repetitive cycle of lacking the results you deserve and desire.
My recommendation is not to give up. We all slip-up. Even I! The fix is to start over right after the slip-up. Right now. No one is perfect. Not you, nor I. The best part about getting right back on track after slipping up from an evening of bingeing on pizza and beer is that it is easier to make up rather than going the rest of the week or month on a binge.
9. I’m so bored!
Most likely, it sounds like you have been performing the same workout for some time now. If this is the case, it is time to shake things up! If you are on the treadmill and all you do is maintain the same speed and incline the entire time, try interval training.
For example, try something like a 10-minute warm up and a 10-minute cooldown. In between both, aim for a 10-minute interval series where you do a minute fast and a minute slow.
If you are bored with your strength training sessions, try some of these tips:
Increase your intensity by lifting a heavier weight or lifting weight faster.
Stop performing the same number of sets and repetitions and vary it up already. Instead of doing 3 sets of 10-12 all of the time, try 4 sets of 6-8 on some days and even sets of 8-10. Make sure you choose to select the right weight for each range. It should be a heavy enough weight to keep you in that range with the idea that you might be able to perform 1 or 2 repetitions more.
Grab a friend to exercise with. You might just learn something you might not be doing or a new way of doing it.