We all do it.
I’m too tired. I haven’t got time. My back hurts. I’m looking after the kids. I don’t feel very well.
Excuses, those tiny sentences that pop into our head without a seconds thought are defence mechanisms shifting responsibility away from ourselves so that we don’t feel guilty about avoiding a task, typically exercise.
In psychology it’s called ‘rationalisation’ defined as ‘controversial behaviors or feelings that are justified and explained in a seemingly rational or logical manner to avoid the true explanation.’
When it comes to making excuses about exercise our thoughts are wholly irrational.
It’s amazing how our minds play tricks on us. However looking for ways out of physical activity goes way back to the caveman.
Tens of thousands of years ago there was an innate ‘laziness’ in all human beings to conserve energy with the absence of food.
Too much physical activity would often result in death.
Nowadays our situation is completely the opposite with the need to expend unwanted calories and restrict food intake but the subconscious ‘laziness’ can manifest in all of us at times.
So how can we stop making excuses?
Here are the four golden rules….
1. Prioritise your time.
Everyone knows that exercise is good for you but a lot of us don’t put it high enough on our priority list so other things get in the way.
I’ve heard the famous excuse, ‘I don’t have enough time’ a million times!
How much time do you flick through Facebook? How much time do you watch TV? How much time do you sit in the car?
You HAVE the time for exercise.
Make an appointment with yourself to exercise daily whether it be going the gym, playing football with the kids or simply taking a walk with a friend.
Remember you only need 10 minutes of vigorous exercise a day to feel and see a difference!
2. Goals, goals, goals!
Set yourself a fitness goal for the day, for the week, for the month and for the year and I guarantee your internal computer in your mind will set.
3. Stop procrastinating.
If you want to exercise, be urgent about it and make plans to do so with a positive attitude.
As soon as negativity creeps in to your mind, self-talk is a great way of getting thoughts back on track.
‘I can do this’, ‘You’ll feel great afterwards’, ‘There’s nothing to stop me’! all work to feed positivity.
4. Be accountable.
Accountability is the single most important factor in adhering to an exercise regime vastly reducing the opportunity for that ‘get out’.
Join an exercising group or meet a friend for a run to set your mind for the appointment.