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If You Hate Exercise, This Will Probably Change Your Mind

If You Hate Exercise, This Will Probably Change Your Mind

Warning: Reading this article may make you start exercising. If you really hate exercise, then you should not risk reading further. If you do hate it, but wish you didn’t, then read on. You may soon feel satisfied with yourself for actually taking care of your body, rather than feeling guilty for not exercising!

Here’s how to tackle each one of your exercise excuses, get into action, and give your body the attention it craves.

1. “I need to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day to get results.”

Most of us have a number that we think we should “hit” in order to exercise “enough.” For some people, this is the daily recommended minimum of 30 minutes. For others, it’s 45 minutes of weight-training plus another 45 minutes of cardio.

I’m not going to put up a fight with your number here. What I am going to do is challenge your idea of starting with that number right away. You see, even though 30 minutes a day might not seem like a lot, 30 minutes a day for the next 5 years is actually too much for your habitual brain to process.

So yes, everyone can do 30 minutes of daily exercise for one week. But how many people can do that for the next 5 years?

Exactly. Starting small–like really small, maybe 5 minutes or less–has the advantage of bypassing your brain’s fight-or-flight response, the mechanism that make you sabotage yourself when you are trying to do something that seems “big” for too long.

This way, instead of mindlessly starting with an exercise program, you focus on building the habit first, and then once you are exercising a little bit every day, you are ready to expand how much exercise you do.

2. “I don’t want to have to force myself to do it.”

If you have to force yourself to do it, then there is a 90% chance that you are doing it wrong and you will never stick to exercise.

“Buuuut,”you might say, “I have friends who have made that happen.”

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Yes, some people are motivated by challenges and others pushing them. Others hate it.

If you are one of the people who hate it, stop trying to change yourself. And of course, stop treating yourself as if you were one of those people who are motivated by challenges and being pushed. The more you use this approach on yourself, the more you’ll hate exercise and of course, the more you won’t do it!

Instead, change the way you approach exercise. Stop falling into what I call the “Happiness Paradox Trap.” Instead of starting with what you think you “should do,” start with what feels good.

This video from Exercise Bliss, a 10-week course that helps you make exercise a daily ritual, shows you what to do:

3. “I’m not motivated enough.”

We think that motivation is the answer to sticking to exercise. If only we wanted it enough, then we would make it happen.

However, that is not true. Motivation is always there. If you feel you wish you exercised more, then you are motivated to exercise. If you are not doing it, it’s not because you are not motivated. It’s because something stops you.

It might be the activated fight-or-flight response we talked about in #1. For example, when you feel that you have too much to do, the fight-or-flight response kicks in, and you do nothing. Does this ring a bell?

People who have already made exercise a daily ritual, don’t depend on boosting their motivation to get off the couch and exercise. They just do it, naturally, without debating it with themselves, desperately trying to get themselves into action.

Again, motivation is not the real issue here. It’s something else that holds you back. Maybe you think you need to devote 1 hour and you don’t know how to do that. Or, maybe you think you need to suffer to get results. Whatever the real reason is, find it. Only then will you be able to figure out a way to remove the obstacle that is on your way.

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4. “I don’t need exercise. I only want to lose weight.”

Many people just care about their weight, nothing else. Yet, our bodies are naturally wired to feel good when we move. Here is a quick list of the benefits of exercise:

  • Decreases the risk of various diseases and bad health conditions, like high cholesterol, diabetes, stroke, certain types of cancer, arthritis, cardiovascular diseases.
  • Increases longevity. According to a Taiwanese study, just 15 minutes of daily exercise prolong life by three years. Not bad, huh?
  • Improves mood. Exercise does not just help depressed people, it helps everyone. A quick workout or walk stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier and more relaxed.
  • Increases your energy levels. Regular physical activity boosts your endurance, and helps your heart and lungs work more efficiently. And yes, that means more energy available for you. It seems that if you feel “too tired” to exercise, then you must exercise!
  • Improves sleep. Yes, regular physical activity can help you sleep better and fall asleep more easily, as long as you don’t exercise a couple of hours prior to bedtime.
  • Improves sex life. Erectile dysfunction? Lack of libido? Just lack of energy? Exercise may help with all of that.
  • Helps you better control your weight. Exercise helps you burn calories, plus you build muscle that generally burns more calories than fat. Exercise is a great add-on to a diet, or weight maintenance plan.
  • Gets you better lab results, even if you are fat. Did you know that an obese person who is fit, i.e., exercises regularly, will show better lab results than a thin person who never exercises? That’s right. The weight does matter. But fitness matters even more.

Do you still think that exercise won’t help you?

5. “I need ‘all my ducks in a row’ before I start thinking about exercise.”

Maybe you are currently busy. Or, you are planning a trip next week. Or, your child just got sick. Shouldn’t you just wait until you can give exercise 100% of your attention?

This rationale once again sounds plausible, but just like the “I don’t have time” excuse, is it really true? Is not starting because you are not “ready,” the best thing for you right now? Is neglecting yourself and your body for a few more weeks/months/years a good strategy?

Finally, how many months or years will you spend before you get “all your ducks in a row?”

6. “I find exercise boring.”

I feel for you. Sometimes I find it boring too. Especially when I attend fitness classes that last for an hour or an hour and a half. Yet, is really moving your body for 5-10 minutes boring?

I could go on and say to find something that you actually like. Yet I know that for most people, exercise itself is rarely the issue. Having to do it for “too long” is the issue.

That’s why I said that if 30 minutes are boring, try 5 or 10.

Now if this idea of starting small stresses you out, let me remind you the wisdom of tip #1–the fact that you may want to be exercising one hour daily, doesn’t mean you have to start from one hour right away! You can start small, and as you feel more and more comfortable build your way up!

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7. “I have negative past experiences.”

I understand that you came last at the sprint race when you were at school. I understand that you may feel embarrassed when you attend fitness classes. Luckily, your past does not need to define your future.

A client of mine wanted to start jogging. She started by walking around the neighborhood. Yet, she found out she felt really uncomfortable feeling that her neighbors were watching her.

She accepted that, and worked her way around it. Instead of walking around her own block, she walked around the block next to her own block. Ta-da! Problem solved. A few months later she was already jogging 2 miles a couple of time a week.

8. “I dislike the whole package of exercise, but not exercise itself.”

If you think you need to exercise for an hour, take a shower, and drive to the gym and back, then you have two hours gone, just like that.

You might like moving your body, but you certainly don’t like having to spend all this time working out! Who could blame you?

Luckily, exercise that gets you results doesn’t have to take all this time and scheduling brainpower.

1. Do something that takes less time – e.g., exercise at home.

2. Automate. For example, if you go to the gym after work, make sure your gym is bag is ready from the day before, so you don’t have to deal with that as well during your busy morning.

9. “I don’t have enough time to exercise.”

I love this one. Even though we know people busier than us, who actually exercise, we keep saying “we are busy.”

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Have you ever thought that being “busy” is actually a lie? If there are busier people than you who make it happen, then so could you. Yet even though we acknowledge that, we still believe that yes, “we are too busy to exercise”.

What is even better is that the people around us also believe us. You see, they too use the “I don’t have time” excuse. Maybe not for exercise. They may do with cleaning, de-cluttering, or something else. If they spoil it for you, then you will be able to spoil it for them.

So admit that time is not an issue. It’s probably something else. Maybe you don’t like it. Maybe you are afraid you’ll have to give up something else in favor of exercise. Whatever the real reason, you need to find it if you want to give your body a chance to thrive!:)

10. “I have so much to do, and exercise will have to take time from things I don’t want to give up.”

Now you might indeed be worried that exercise will take too much of your time. Time that you are not sure you should “sacrifice” in order to take care of your body.

Well, here is what seasoned author Susan Miller of Astrology Zone said about this:

hate exercise

    And before I go, let me tell you this.

    You are not helpless. If not taking care of your body makes you feel guilty, then know that you can change that. You can become one of those people who exercise regularly and like it. There’s even a course that teaches that.

    I believe in you.

    Now make a strategic exercise plan and remember: you don’t have to start with something big. Instead start with what feels good. That’s the best recipe for success!

    More by this author

    8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More How to Have Happy Thoughts and Train Your Brain to Be Happy Instantly 10 Things Nice People Do Differently That Make Them Achieve More If You Hate Exercise, This Will Probably Change Your Mind 10 Thinking Mistakes You’re Probably Making

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    Last Updated on October 9, 2018

    Why Am I Exhausted? The Real Causes and How to Fix It Forever

    Why Am I Exhausted? The Real Causes and How to Fix It Forever

    Do you say “I’m exhausted” all the time? Do you constantly feel exhausted for no reason?

    Fatigue shows up in many ways including pure exhaustion, the inability to concentrate, anger, frustration and behavioral issues, memory problems, decreased work performance, and slower reaction times. Chronic fatigue has also been linked to medical problems including obesity, hypertension, depression, diabetes, as well as increased automobile accidents.

    We attempt to combat fatigue with coffee, sugar, energy drinks, vitamins and a variety of other products that claim to increase our energy and stamina. But what if your exhaustion is trying to tell you something?

    If you’re getting enough sleep and you’re still feeling exhausted, it’s time to stop, take a step back and look at what else is contributing to your exhaustion.

    As a life-coach and consultant with a diverse background, I like to look at things from a holistic view – from multiple levels – including your body, mind and spirit.

    So before you reach for that next cup of coffee, the 3pm sugary snack or the toxic energy drink, let’s look at some other reasons why you might be tired all the time, and more importantly, what you can do about it.

    Here are 11 potential reasons why you’re exhausted even when get enough rest, and what you can do about it.

    1. You are out of alignment mentally, emotionally or spiritually.

    Essentially, you’re off track with who you are and what works for you. Maybe you’re unhappy, unfulfilled, stressed out or just plain bored with some areas of your life. You might be in a relationship that isn’t working, a job you can’t stand or a situation that drains your energy.

    Think about a time in your life when you were in the flow, in the zone, and totally engaged and excited about what you were doing. How much sleep did you need then? Even after only a few hours, my guess is you probably found yourself jumping out of bed in the morning without an alarm clock, excited about embarking on the day.

    On the flipside, think about a time in your life when you were in a relationship or job that zapped your energy. No matter how much sleep you got, you probably found it difficult to get out of bed in the morning and were tempted to hit that snooze button just a few more times.

    We all have things that make us feel great and energized and things that completely zap our energy. Maybe you’re someone who likes to move quickly but you’re drowning in detail; maybe you’re someone who thrives when you are on top of things and you’re feeling like everything is completely out of control. Or maybe you thrive on spontaneity and variety and you’re bored with your life.

    When I asked my 11-year-old daughter why she thought people are tired even when we get enough rest, here’s what she said.

    “Maybe people are bored and so they’re tired.”

    Ever wonder why you can’t drag your kid out of bed for school on the weekdays but they pop out of bed on the weekend? Perhaps this is the culprit.

    I had a client share this sentiment recently as she described a period of time in her life: “My boss sucked, the work was boring and it made me tired all the time.”

    Exactly.

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    When you’re doing things that align with who you are, in environments that align with what you need, you will feel more energized and alive. On the contrary, when you’re in environments that go against your grain, you will feel drained and de-energized.

    What can you do?

    Take a step back and identify what’s not working. Figure out what you want and work towards it. Do things that give you energy.

    What makes you feel healthy and alive, energized and excited? What gets you in the flow and makes you feel most like you? Aim to get more of that in your life.

    Find more ways to be in alignment with who you are with these tips:

    How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up

    2. You are out of alignment physically.

    When we are structurally out of alignment, it can cause all sorts of issues. When things aren’t moving properly, it makes it hard for your body to do its job. Not to mention, pain is exhausting and zaps energy. And we are pretty hard on our bodies, aren’t we? We drag them around and tell them what to do. They need to be taken care of too.

    Here’s what Chiropractor, Dr. Ruth Ziemba, who specializes in NSA (Network Spinal Analysis) has to say:

    All of life is energy. We are energy. Any disturbance or blockages to the energy flow creates imbalances… Physical, mental and emotional stressors can cause subluxations (misalignment of the vertebrae) which interfere with signals getting clearly through your body. This can result in many health problems, including fatigue and insomnia.

    Recently, I was feeling tired all the time – and felt like I was doing “everything else” right. So, I went to see my chiropractor and a cranial sacral therapist. Two days later, I felt much more energized and clear in my head.

    I love the analogy I was once given by a chiropractor: “It doesn’t matter how well you can play an instrument if the instrument is out of tune.”

    Such is true with our bodies.

    What can you do?

    Get some body work. This might include getting a massage, acupuncture, chiropractic, reiki, cranial sacral therapy – anything that works for you.

    Don’t know where to start? Ask a friend or colleague for a recommendation. Even better if you have a friend in the field who can refer you to another practitioner. And make sure to schedule regular body work, not just when you need it.

    3. You are not eating right (or enough).

    What – and how much – you eat has a significant effect on your energy levels.

    While there are many different diet protocols, there is one thing all the experts can agree on: sugar and processed foods make you feel sluggish and exhausted. They make your blood sugar go haywire, causing you to feel a brief period of energy followed by a crash.

    Paradoxically, those are the very things we reach for when we need a hit of energy.

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    What can you do?

    I’ve found two things to be consistently true:

    One, you need to eat real, clean food. The food you’re putting into your body is either real or it’s not. Avoid processed foods and especially refined sugars. You’re going to feel so much better for it.

    Two, find what works for YOU. Gluten-free, Paleo, Mediterranean, high-fat, plant-based, you name it. Experts and well-meaning friends and family may tell you what’s best, but no one knows your body as well as you do. Pay attention, do you feel energized or fatigued after you eat certain foods? What works – and what doesn’t for YOU? Our bodies have intrinsic wisdom if we are willing to listen – and hear them.

    4. You are not really sleeping.

    We’ve established that you’re (hopefully) getting enough sleep. But are you getting enough high-quality sleep?

    Some of the top causes of poor sleep quality include: being on electronics right before bed, interruptions, an uncomfortable mattress or the wrong pillow, grinding your teeth, an inconsistent sleep routine or the fact that you’re not getting through all of the sleep cycles.

    What can you do?

    Start with the basics:

    Get off your electronics at least an hour before bed, make sure you have a comfortable pillow and mattress, set a consistent sleep routine, reduce outside noise and sleep in a well-darkened room or wear an eye mask.

    If you have difficulty falling asleep or have poor sleep quality, this guide will help you get a good night’s sleep back:

    Poor Sleep Quality Comes from All the Things You Do Since Morning

    5. You are stressed or worrying too much.

    When you’re stressed, you produce more cortisol (the stress hormone), which can significantly affect your sleep.[1] This is why one of the common side effects of stress is sleep problems.

    On top of stress hormones, excessive worry can drain your energy. When you worry, you’re using energy. It’s like when you have an app on your phone that takes up a lot of battery and you have it constantly running the background, your battery will drain more quickly. Such is true with worry and stress.

    I think of this very simply. We all start the day with 100 units of energy to use throughout the day. If you’re using half of your energy units worrying, you’re inevitably going to be tired.

    What can you do?

    Find things that reduce your stress levels. I’ve seen clients have great success with yoga, meditation and exercise. Worrying too much? Get a clear plan in place to take action on what’s worrying you.

      6. You are not breathing deeply enough.

      Deep breathing increases circulation by bringing oxygen to your muscles and brain. This increased oxygen content in the bloodstream leads to greater energy and healthier muscles, organs and tissues.

      To highlight the benefits of deep breathing, I reached out to longtime Yoga Instructor & Ayurveda Wellness Counselor, Vivica Schwartz. Here’s what she shared:[2]

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      “Most people breathe in to the chest only (shallow breathing) and don’t allow the breath to reach deeper into the abdominal region, due to stress and anxiety. Shifting the breath down, so that it expands the belly (and all the muscles that comprise the diaphragm) is one of the best ways to shift our awareness, quiet the mind, release tension and increase our energy levels”.

      What happened when you started to read this one? Did you start breathing more deeply? Great, you’re already on your way.

      What can you do?

      Make a conscious effort to breathe deeply, more often. Try this from Vivica:

      1. Place one hand on your chest and the other on your lower belly.
      2. Breath smoothly in and out through the nose, noticing how your breath expands three-dimensionally in the ribcage.
      3. Now begin to shift the inhalation into the lower abdomen first, so that the lower hand rises first, then fill the chest area.
      4. Reverse the process on the exhalation, emptying the chest area first, then the lower belly.
      5. Continue like this for a few rounds, visualizing the diaphragm contracting and pushing down and expanding the belly area.

      7. You are hanging out with the wrong crowd.

      Have you ever known someone who “sucks the life out of you”? After spending time together, you feel tired, drained and exhausted? “Energy vampires” do just that, they suck your energy. It doesn’t matter how much sleep you’re getting; if you’re spending time with people who drain your energy, you’re going to feel tired.

      What can you do?

      Grab some garlic and your stake and ditch the energy vampires. Make a conscious effort to hang out with people who feed your soul and make you feel energized and alive.

      If you need a little help to spot these people out, here it is: 15 Signs Of Negative People

      8. You are not moving.

      There’s been a lot of research conducted over many years that shows physical activity and exercise improves energy and decreases fatigue.

      In a widely acknowledged 2006 study published in Psychological Bulletin, researchers analyzed 70 studies on exercise and fatigue which involved more than 6,800 people. Over 90% of the studies showed the same thing: Sedentary people who completed a regular exercise program reported improved fatigue compared to those that did not exercise.

      What can you do?

      Get moving! Find ways to increase your exercise and movement. General guidelines are 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise or 75 minutes per week of vigorous activity (or a combination of the two). This can be as simple as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking 20 minutes a day or participating in a sport you enjoy.

      Here’re some tips for you: How to Instantly Fall in Love With Moving and Start Shaking off the Extra Pounds

      9. You are dehydrated.

      The human body is composed of 50-65% water. Some parts of our bodies, like our brain, heart and lungs are more than 70% water. This means even mild dehydration can cause your energy levels to fall.

      Fatigue is a telltale sign you are dehydrated. In fact, in a survey of 300 doctors in the UK, 1 in 5 patients who saw their doctor for symptoms such as fatigue and tiredness simply weren’t drinking enough water.

      What can you do?

      First and foremost, drink enough water. A simple rule of thumb is eight 8-ounce glasses per day. And before you reach for your coffee in the morning, reach for a glass of water first.

      However, Doctor and hydration expert Dr. Zach Bush noted,

      “Proper hydration is not simply infusing your body with water. More specifically, it’s about getting the water inside your cells. To do that, you need to improve the electrical charges across your cellular membranes. Strategies that improve the electrical charge across your membranes include: reducing EMF (electromagnetic field) exposure, increasing electrolytes, and boosting your fiber intake.”

      So, try this intensive hydration protocol: Drink 4 ounces of water every 30 minutes from 7am-7pm for 3 days. During this intense hydration, add electrolytes to every other 4-ounce dose. Then give your body a break from food and water between 7pm and 7am.

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      Learn more about intracellular hydration with Dr. Bush here .

      10. You are too busy.

      You know the saying, “If you want something done, ask a busy person.” I say, leave the busy person alone. They clearly have enough on their plate.

      I work with many clients, especially moms, who wonder why they are so tired all the time. When I ask them to tell me about “a day in their life”, I get something like this: 6am wake-up , exercise, get the kids off to school, work, drive to after-school activities, get dinner on the table, do hosework, coordinate schedules, bath and bed time (for the kids of course), and then back to work after the kids go to bed. And they wonder why they are tired?

      I get it. I’ve been there and I have to be careful of this myself. As a working mom of three young girls, who also wants to be social and active in my community, I know all too well the life of being busy. I’ve had to reign it in, create strategies and make very conscious decisions.

      What can you do?

      Look at your life as an outside observer or “fly on the wall”. What do you notice? Maybe you need to learn to say no? Perhaps you need to take a step back and identify what’s most important? Or set better boundaries?

      Perhaps you need to delegate more, outsource or just get some stuff off YOUR plate! Take just ONE thing and start from there.

      If you want extra advice on this, check out this guide:

      The Ultimate Guide to Prioritizing Your Work And Life

      11. There is something else going on.

      If you’ve tried everything above, you are getting enough sleep and you are still tired, you may want to see your doctor or healthcare professional to uncover any underlying issues.

      Amongst other things, what leads to exhaustion could be medication side effects and other health concerns including thyroid and adrenal dysfunction, anemia and sleep apnea.

      What can you do?

      Talk to your doctor. Seriously. Make an appointment.

      If you’re sleeping enough and doing all the “right” things above and you still feel tired, it’s important to identify what could be the cause.

      The bottom line

      If you’re sleeping enough and still find yourself tired and exhausted all the time, it’s time to step back and see which of these reasons resonate with you.

      In order to get a different result, you have to DO something differently. In order to be more energized and less exhausted, you’re going to need to make some changes.

      What changes will you make? Are you going to eat better, exercise more, stay hydrated, take something off your plate, reassess the job you hate or relationship that’s draining you?

      Take a few minutes right now and think of 1-3 things you’re going to try. Write them down in your journal, on your phone or send an email to yourself.

      Change takes action and it’s time for change. You’ve got this. Take action now and your energy levels will be glad you did!

        Reference

        [1]Dr. Doni: How Cortisol Affects Your Sleep
        [2]Vivica Schwartz,Yoga Instructor & Ayurveda Wellness Counselor

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