"I'm at work all day the last thing I want to do is exercise after a long day"
"I have to get my kids to school, sports, play dates......."
Excuse after Excuse after Excuse
This is not a revelation for anyone, but it does raise the question; if exercise is so good for us, and everyone knows it, why don’t we exercise more regularly?
Over the past fifteen years, and thousands of personal training sessions, I have come to realize that there are two common answers to this question. 1) People feel like they don’t have time to exercise on a regular basis; 2) Lack of education.
At Inspiration Training our philosophy is based on a client education process that begins with establishing a daily routine to include exercise. In part one of this two-part series I will describe my top five ways to help clients overcome the barrier of time availability.
1. Schedule a meeting with yourself When was the last time you decided not to attend a meeting at work? Or the last time you opted not to drive your child to their sporting event? For most people, the items that are scheduled are always completed. Therefore, I encourage all of my clients to schedule “exercise meetings” with themselves and treat it just like they would any other appointment.
2. Commit to partner or group training Similar to scheduling an “exercise meeting”, committing to an exercise group or scheduling weekly fitness sessions with a friend provides motivation and helps to ensure dedication. I encourage my clients to sign up for group training sessions as they are typically scheduled on the same day of the week and at the same time of day. They then become appointments that you learn to plan around.
3. Avoid the all or nothing philosophy
Exercise is good for you…what many people do not understand is that any amount of exercise is good for you. How many times have you begun an exercise program only to quit after realizing your schedule could not handle your best intentions? Beginning an exercise program is a lifestyle change and it is important to resist the temptation to add too much too quickly. Start by scheduling 15-minute workouts into your day. In many cases you will see better results than scheduling 5 hour-long workouts per week that you only adhere to one time. Have trust that later you will find the time and energy for longer workouts and look forward to completing them.
4. Workout early in the day
As the day goes on the more excuses you will find not to workout! Yes, I know waking up at 5am may be a shock to the system to begin, but after a couple weeks consistently getting up at the same time it will be routine. The trick is to wake up EVERYDAY at the same time. No sleeping in on the weekends.
5. Combine Activities
• Workout during commercials. Better yet cancel your TV and get moving.
• Make family time active time. I have three kids, eight, six and four, who love to move and love moving with mom and dad. So instead of trying to find a time for you to go to the gym and workout without kids, start including them. Yes, time alone is needed but somedays this is not realistic. Ride bikes together, go wall climbing, pull them in the toboggan, do yoga. Be a role model for you kids!
• Walk or ride your bike to work
I don't find the time to workout... I make the time to workout.