Research shows that 60% of Americans fail to meet the threshold for the recommended level of physical activity. Additionally, it’s estimated that one in every four adults never exercise at all. From hectic work schedules to not seeing noticeable results, there are several reasons why people may not choose to exercise. If you realized that you have been living a rather sedentary lifestyle where you spend a majority of your free time on a California king size bed, but would like to become more active and receive the numerous benefits that exercise has to offer, this post is for you. Let’s take a look at some reasons why you may not be exercising and some solutions to consider.
1) Lack of Enjoyment
When you first get into the habit of exercising, it’s common for you to experience muscle pain and muscle fatigue, such as shin splints for instance. Normally, people avoid things that invoke pain. But when you establish a consistent routine, your body gradually becomes stronger. And even though the concept of being happy while exercising seems contradictory, as you work out, your body eventually releases dopamine which elevates your moods.
2) Failure to Follow Through
Even though some people start off with the intention of remaining consistent, they eventually quit as a result of a lack of motivation. Additionally, people quit exercise for reasons such as :
- Burn out from trying to do too much too soon
- Confusion on the correct machines to use or exercise routine to conduct to get desired results
- Boredom from being on a stationary bike or treadmill at the gym
If you fall under this category, one of the things you should try is to change up your workout routine. Some things you can do include:
- Get a trainer. Trainers have the expertise to turn a boring routine into an efficient and challenging routine
- Don’t try to do everything all at once. Target different areas on different days, such as doing cardiovascular activities every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and strength training exercises every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.
3) Not Seeing Major Changes
The frustration people feel from not being able to see their abs or lose weight within a few weeks of working out can cause them to give up. But similarly to how you didn’t put on excess weight overnight, you can’t lose it overnight either. As is the case with being successful with anything in life, consistency and resilience are key. It also helps if you develop a more realistic outlook on the process. Research suggests that it takes up to 12 weeks before you can start seeing major changes.
4) Childcare Responsibilities
Based on the abundance of sports and activities that children can partake in, their lives can get just as busy as an adult. The end result of this is that parents end up spending time doing things like carpooling for other children, as well as taking their children to various after-school programs. This leaves little time for them to go to the gym. In some cases, a parent may not be able to work out because she has to supervise younger children.
As opposed to thinking of exercising at the gym as something that you have to do by yourself, one of the ways you could solve this problem is to make it an activity that the entire family can enjoy. Even if your goal is to lose weight and your children may not need to, exercising provides a wealth of health benefits. By taking your children with you, you can supervise them as you would at home while getting them used to a healthy habit that will prolong their life in the long run.
5) Poor Mental Health: Depression, Stress, and Anxiety
Stress, anxiety, and depression push many people to isolate themselves and avoid activities. If this applies to you, chances are that you simply cannot muster the motivation you need to exercise as a result of the fact that your mind is preoccupied with stress or worry. But did you know that exercise can actually improve your mental health?
In fact, experts at the Harvard Medical School have stated that exercise is like an all-natural treatment that you can use to safely combat anxiety, stress, and depression. Dr. Michael Craig Miller, a professor at Harvard Medical School, proclaims that on top of helping to improve sleep and lower blood pressure levels, high-intensity exercises like jogging leads to the release of endorphins.
Endorphins function like analgesics. This means that they reduce our perception of pain. Endorphins are also regarded as being a “happy hormone” because when the brain secretes it, it has a positive impact on our energy levels, memory, and mood. Therefore, regardless of how unmotivated and stressed you may be at the thought of exercising, if you push yourself to conduct a high-intensity exercise, it will gradually help to lower depression and stabilize your mood.