Overcoming exercise barriers

We’ve all had our reasons not to exercise, so this post looks at how to overcome these ‘reasons’!

I’ve been there before, after a long stressful day at work the last thing I wanted to do was go to the gym and exercise! But the times I ignored that feeling and went to the gym, I came away feeling 10 times better! So let’s look at our reasons and the thoughts we can use to fight them!


Look at the reasoning Overcoming the barrier
There are 24 hours in a day most people work 9 hours, sleep 8 hours and have 3 hours leisure time. SO WHAT ABOUT THE OTHER FOUR HOURS?!What will happen if you continue to put off exercising? Will you have time in the future for doctor appointments or taking medication every day to treat issues or illnesses such as high blood pressure or diabetes?Is time really an issue or is it just the fact you don’t want to? -Prioritise your ‘to do’ list by splitting it down into essential things to do and all the other things can wait, as you place your health above.-Plan your week and see which days you have the most time (even if it’s 5 minutes), write in your diary or even set an alarm on your phone or tablet to remind you-Pass on jobs to friends or family (can your partner do the washing up? Would your friend mind babysitting for half an hour a week?)

-I recently read a guy’s blog on how he challenged his friend to pay him £100 if he didn’t go to the gym 3 times a week for one month. Guess what…the friend didn’t need to pay any money!

-Try training first thing in a morning so it’s out of the way, start off with just 20 minutes

-Add physical activity into your daily life, e.g. whilst hovering add some lunges, whilst trying to get your baby to sleep walk around do some squats! Do plank, sit ups or leg raises whilst you watch tv!



Look at the reasoning Overcoming the barrier
-Is it mental fatigue rather than physical tiredness you are experiencing? I recently had an honest client tell me how she ‘couldn’t be bothered to train today but will do her best’ by the end of the session she said ‘next time I feel rubbish I’m going to train because now I feel great!’-Consistently exercising in the long term increases mitochondria, a clever little thing within our cells that actually creates energy! So the thought of exercising makes you more tired is a LIE! Short term you may feel tired straight after yes, but the more you do the more your body adapts to the challenge and gives you more energy! -Do one step at a time, put on your running shoes then open the door, then walk to the end of your drive, then power walk to the next lamppost then the next then the next and the next thing you know you’re running and feel great!-Find motivation from role models ask friends to tell you off if you don’t go to the gym, use motivational posters or stick that horrible ‘fat’ picture in places you will see it constantly-Remind yourself what got you started, why did you join a gym in the first place?


-Set a goal to train x amounts of times in a month and draw a smiley face on the calendar so you can see if you deserve a treat at the end of the month!

-Remind yourself of the benefits of working out

-Plan to exercise at times you will have the most energy

-When you plan to exercise, tell friends on Facebook or social media so you then become accountable, feeling you will have to exercise now or you will look flaky!



Look at the reasoning Overcoming the barrier
What is ‘exercise’ to you? Or do you mean school sports?! Bad experiences in the past will give you an impression of what it will be like. Try new or different experiences -Find something you enjoy, badminton, walking, cycling, indoor climbing, swimming, classes, tennis, Frisbee or even just physical activities like gardening, playing chase with your children etc!-Don’t think of it as ‘exercising’ or what you ‘should’ do but think of what you ‘can’ do or ‘want’ to do!-A recent study compared two groups who walked for 3 miles: one group was told it was a leisure walk another was told it was exercise. The group that ‘exercised’ was found to eat more chocolate and felt more anxious! So see it as a ‘leisurely’ thing that you are choosing to do!

-Praise yourself on little achievements (running longer, doing more reps) as this will give you a sense of achievement and eventually enjoyment of exercising!


Look at the reasoning Overcoming the barrier
-How much do you spend on cigarettes, alcohol, going to the pictures, a morning coffee, computer games or other things that you feel is more important?-You don’t have to join a gym to get fit!

-Do you really want to put a price on your health?

-Follow a DVD workout at home, or even free workouts you can find on youtube. See my 5 minute abs video! click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bRz_tbEjUw&list=UUOOQ-Pg6Xsqsp9N3EU77Seg-Download free workout apps on your smart phone like ‘you are your own gym’

-Budget your finances, find out where your money goes and if that can be condensed in anyway

-Find cheap classes nearby or purchase your own at home equipment like a skipping rope or dumbbells

-There are some gyms out there these days that are £10 a month and that’s a monthly rolling contract rather than a 12 or 6 month one


Look at the reasoning Overcoming the barrier
You “can not” or you “will not”? (Unless there is a valid reason like you can’t walk!)Is it that you tried one activity and didn’t enjoy it? Or is it that you weren’t good at it so you decided you can’t exercise?!If you have had a recent injury there are workouts for other body parts! Doctors, physios and nurses on rare occasions will tell you not to exercise or do light activity -Choose activities that have little or no skill involved like walking-Learn to warm up and cool down to reduce inury-Do something you know you can do-Use a Personal Trainer to help give you confidence and motivation

-If you have a leg injury then do arm workouts, or visa versa.

-If you can’t exercise are you watching what you eat instead?

-Doing daily activities like cleaning can count as ‘exercise’ it still burns calories!

So what’s stopping you from exercising? Tell us by commenting below and see if we can come up with solutions or different thoughts to help! I hope this helped you not only to overcome your barriers to exercising but to recognise how you feel towards exercise or physical activity.

Healthy regards,


Leigh Scott x


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