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No Excuses.

Let’s face it. We all do it. We blow off working out. We don’t have time right? We don’t like it. We’re intimidated. Or we aren’t seeing results quick enough… so why bother?

Time to get over those excuses! Here are several tricks to working past the excuses we tell ourselves:

Excuse: I’m not seeing any results.

Solution: Try an activity that works both your upper and lower body at the same time! You’ll boost your calorie burn in the same amount of time as your basic workout.

“In a study of 30 women who cycled, walked, or did step aerobics, researchers found that those doing the step workout requiring the use of their arms and legs felt the exercise was significantly easier–even though they were working at the same intensity as the others.” “Coordinating your arm/leg movements can keep your mind busy, so you’re less likely to focus on the exertion,” says study author Lisa Lloyd, Ph.D., of Southwest Texas State University.”

We aren’t saying that boot camp and fitness challenge workouts are easier… but the whole body movements will double your burn in the same amount of time as that ho-hum treadmill workout you have been doing.  

Excuse: It doesn’t feel good.

Solution: Do a cool-down. Seriously. “Finishing your workout with 5 minutes of easy activity can make it more enjoyable, according to a study by Britton W. Brewer, PhD, of Springfield College in Massachusetts. “People’s last impression of exercise is the one that lingers,” he says. “With a cool-down, you leave feeling the exercise was easier, so you’re more likely to do it again.”

Not only is a cool down great for bringing your heart rate down, but adding a nice stretch session after is healthy for your muscles as well as your mind. End positively!

Excuse: People are looking at me. I will look like a fool.

Solution: Forget perfection. You aren’t on the stage, exercise is not a performance. “Women put such pressure on themselves,” says Carol Gallagher, PhD, author of Going to the Top (Penguin, 2001). “Learning to feel okay with and laugh at little mistakes is good for you.” Walk, dance, enjoy yourself–without worrying about how you look. Bonus: You burn more calorie when you’re not very good at something!”

Excuse: I don’t have time.

Solution: Don’t you? Count the small stuff. Break your workouts up throughout the day.  “Life is never all or nothing, especially in exercise,” says Dr. Gallagher. A 10-minute walk is always better than nothing.

Be it a walk around the block with kids, taking the stairs at work, lifting the groceries… or making it to boot camp in the morning. It all adds up! Even if it means recording your shows to watch in a block on the weekend and giving up that hour for a workout… you are doing yourself such a huge benefit. Be it breaking the workouts up, cutting something else out, or making it to boot camp, your body will thank you!  

Excuse: I’ve tried it before.

Solution: So? Shift your thinking.  As we discussed yesterday, do not focus on the negative. Get excited about you journey and where you want to go. “You achieve what you focus on, so instead of focusing on what you didn’t do, concentrate on the times you did exercise. It’s more empowering and proof that you can succeed, says Dr. Gallagher.”

Contributors: Michele Stanten, Prevention.com

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