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Finding Time to Exercise

It CAN be done!


Updated June 28, 2006

Be honest...on your list of priorities, where does exercise fall? Is it even on your list? Some of you don't exercise because you think you don't have time. You're waiting for your schedules to ease up, for the weather to cool off or heat up, for school to end or start, or some other future event. The truth is, there's never a right time to get moving. It's now or never, so read on to find out how to make exercise a reality.

Why You Don't Exercise

We all have excuses for why we don't exercise. Recognize any of these?
  • Exercise is boring. If you don't look forward to your workouts, it's no wonder you skip them. People often force themselves into activities that don't interest them which, of course, increases the quit-factor.
  • There are no immediate consequences to skipping a workout. It's not like you'll gain 10 pounds or suddenly get heart disease if you miss one day. But, it's easy to let the time get away from you until, pretty soon it's been a month since your last workout. Then come the consquences-weight gain, low energy and more.
  • You're waiting for things to calm down. Haven't you figured it out yet? Life doesn't calm down as we get older. Jobs, kids, family, social obligations...they're never going to go away. If you're waiting for a clear schedule, you'll be waiting for a long time. If you really want to exercise, find a way to do it now.
  • You're waiting to fall in love with exercise. Think you'll suddenly wake up one morning, itching to get to that workout? It just doesn't work that way. You have to work at it every day and find that motivation wherever you can.
  • You get frustrated by lack of results. Are you a scale-watcher? Remember, it takes time to see results. If you're obsessed with the scale, it's that much harder to stay motivated. Focus on what you're getting NOW--energy, stress reduction, satisfaction, etc.
  • You don't have huge chunks of time to do all this exercise. You're in luck--you don't need lots of time. Just 10 or so minutes a few times throughout the day and you've got yourself an exercise program.

Finding Fun in Exercise

You may not think of exercise as being fun, but maybe you should change your perspective a little. Working out offers a different kind of pleasure. No, it's not sitting-at-the-beach-sipping-a-tropical-drink kind of pleasure, but a wow-my-life-is-better kind of pleasure. Sound cheesy? Perhaps, but it's true that exericse gives you:

  1. Satisfaction. Admit it--does anything feel better than finishing a workout? You feel good about yourself, confident and, most importantly, you learn to trust yourself to follow through with your commitments.li]
  2. Relaxation. If you do it right, a good workout will leave you both energized and relaxed. You're alert, but not stressed and you're able to accomplish more.
  3. Weight loss. Duh.
  4. Better health. There's no better prescription for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and other conditions related to beingoverweight.
  5. Confidence. There's no better confidence builder than exercise. You become comfortable in your own skin and you typically become more graceful, balanced and agile.

If you want to learn from the experts, i.e. people who've been working out for ages, read on to see how they did it.

Next: Tips and Resources for Busy People
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