Motivation Articles

Arm Yourself Against Exercise Excuses

Winning the Fight Against Yourself

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I got into a fight this morning. It was not a “discussion." It was not a “disagreement.” It was a full blown fight. No, it wasn’t with my wife or kids or even the other drivers on the highway. The fight started before work and even before anyone else in the house was awake. The person I had a fight with was myself.

You see, if I am going to exercise, it has to go like this: Up at 4:45 a.m., running by 5:00, in the shower by 6:00, and then out the door to work. Now, I never said it this routine was easy (thus the fight). Always on time, I was awakened by the shrill beep, Beep, BEEP of my alarm, signaling the start of the fight. It was on!

You must be kidding. I feel like I just went to sleep a few hours ago! FOR GOODNESS SAKE, IT IS DARK OUTSIDE!

Another excuse jab here: I’m tired!

A plea punch there: It’s dark!

A surprise shot in the dark: Don't get out of this comfy bed!

I kept moving during the assault as the barrage of excuses filled my mind. I slowly made it to the bathroom to find today's running gear where I left it the night before. Even there, the attack continued: I can't get up and run when it gets cold in a few months. Then I was hit from behind with another jab of justification: It’s too dark. I could get hit by a car!

I put on my armor to boost my strength and defend myself better. Socks on. Shorts. Shirt, shoes, and visor. Trusty iPod in hand. That was all it took to bring down the offender. The fight was over and I was out the door. Even then though I could roughly hear his voice from the distance telling me: Just run three miles instead of the usual five. But it was too late—I had won today by a knock-out!

That's how my battle went this morning, but in reality, it's a battle I fight every day. I’d like to say that I am an undefeated champion, but that would be a lie. Sometimes I do lose and the voice wins. Many people think that a personal trainer never misses a workout and never struggles with eating the right things (or staying away from the not-so-right things). But I struggle just as much as everyone else. It is not easier for me than it is for others. It all comes down to the moment of the decision—like 4:45 a.m. every morning. That is where the battle is won or lost.
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About The Author

Jason Anderson Jason Anderson
Jason loves to see people realize the benefits of a healthy, active lifestyle. He is a certified personal trainer and enjoys running races--from 5Ks to 50K ultramarathons. See all of Jason's articles.

Member Comments

  • Great article--short and sweet and straight to the heart of the matter. - 7/21/2014 11:45:06 AM
  • Good luck is kind of a dumb wish. In France they say "Bon courage" - good courage, and in Japan, they say good effort. Maybe we should switch to one of those. - 4/8/2014 1:54:49 PM
  • Great article that nails it! - 1/19/2014 11:11:11 AM
  • It is nice to know that even a personal trainer struggles getting out of bed! I fight with myself everyday. Worst is when my husband is snoring right through the alarm! The best thing I do is make myself get out of bed at least for 5 min. I tell myself is I still don't want to go ok, but most of the time I figure I am already up might as well go! - 12/18/2013 10:18:52 AM
  • RUSSELLEATON
    Exercise is actually bad for you. See "Why You Should Never Exercise" at Amazon.com. - 11/9/2013 9:17:52 PM
  • I like this article! - 9/4/2013 3:58:18 AM
  • I would really like to get into the habit of exercising early in the morning. - 7/9/2013 6:09:20 PM
  • Thanks.. just what I needed. And I like the 90 year old plus category for the 5K. I hope I'm right in there too! - 6/11/2013 6:44:24 PM
  • Good article. Sometimes I will say I'm not going today. But I will sit about five minutes and I'll say no let me go to the gym. For me I feel guilty if I don't go. - 5/21/2013 7:37:39 AM
  • Thanks for the article! I enjoyed reading it for the second time. - 5/20/2013 2:58:31 PM
  • Thank you for this article, I enjoyed it alot and feel like I would like to exercise.

    - 4/25/2013 9:51:21 AM
  • For me, a huge part is having a hard time telling between when I feel bad enough to rest and when I should power through. I've made mistakes going both ways. Being stubborn can be good in some ways but can cause physical illness/injury worse. But, sometimes it doesn't seem too bad. Other times I rest when it's not so bad-but my excuse say it's really bad-and I can 'fall into the trap of "I need to rest" and inertia sets in. Why can't I figure it out? - 3/23/2013 2:45:15 PM
  • My main excuses are "I deserve a day off" or "I've done enough this week".
    - 3/1/2013 10:42:47 PM
  • It is a battle every single day -- sometimes it's 3 am for me, sometimes I get to sleep until 4:30 am. Either way, you can't think about it, just do it! It only takes 2 weeks for something to become a habit, so no more excuses -- face it head on, dead on! And GET - IT - DONE! - 3/1/2013 6:06:57 PM
  • ANIMATOR606432
    This is JUST what I needed to hear today. One of the main reasons I could never get my weight under control is because I could never commit to exercise. Knowing that even a personal trainer struggle with this, makes me feel even more confident that I can overcome it. Another good tip is to have a work out buddy, someone who will constantly pushing you to work. I have a friend who simply asks, "Did you work out today?" and telling her confidently "yes" is almost worth the work out alone. - 3/1/2013 5:19:46 PM

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