Beating Exercise Barriers


Posted By: EnvisionWell

Beating Exercise Barriers

Beating Exercise Barriers

Exercise is one of the best things you can do for your health. It reduces your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancer. It can also improve your mental well-being and increase your energy. So why don’t more people do it? A variety of things can come between you and your fitness goals. Here are some common barriers to exercise and ways to overcome them:


Barrier: You find exercise boring.

Solution: Invite a friend to walk with you or attend an exercise class together. Having a fitness buddy gives you more to look forward to, and helps you stick with your commitment. Also, try all types of exercise to find ones that you enjoy. There are so many different types of movement, have fun exploring them all!


Barrier: You’re too tired.

Solution: Identify a time of day when you feel more energetic. Even a short walk during your lunch hour has health benefits. Remind yourself that once you get started, you may find that your energy levels increase and it gets easier.


Barrier: You think you’re out of shape.

Solution: You don’t have to do exercises that are too challenging for you. Start with walking, biking, or something else you enjoy. Go at your own pace and build up to longer, harder workouts as your fitness level improves.


Barrier: You’re just too busy.

Solution: Find small amounts of time to fit in a walk or class. If you have children at home, take them with you for walks and make it a family activity. You can add activity into your daily life. Park farther from your destination and walk. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. March in place or use a treadmill while you watch TV. You can also break up your workout into five to ten minute segments over the course of the day. There’s no hard and fast rule that you have to do it all at once.


Barrier: You don’t have the right equipment or gym membership.

Solution: There are many ways to be physically active that don’t require a gym or exercise equipment. During the height of COVID-19 when exercise equipment was experiencing supply chain issues, social media pages were full of workout videos that used bodyweight only or common household items like water bottles and milk jugs. Alternatively, you can walk, run or jog, and many parks have exercise areas for adults to use for free.


Barrier: You’re self-conscious about your body.

Solution: First, be kind to yourself. Don’t talk negatively to yourself about your body. Instead, celebrate it for the miracle that it is! Remind yourself that working out is a privilege that not everyone gets to enjoy and be proud that you are working to improve your health. If you are still feeling self-conscious, you can always work out by yourself for a little while to help you gain confidence. Or, go with a friend, one who loves you and will help lift you up when you feel down.


Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Heart Association, AIPM

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