10 top excuses people use to avoid exercise—part 6

Man with his paddle board on the beach at sunset.

Image: homydesign/Bigstock.com

Being healthy for retirement means getting healthy before retirement. In this 7-part series, health researcher and exercise guru Darren Morton talks about the top 10 excuses people use to not exercise.

Exercise is boring and I don’t like it

If you find yourself using this excuse out loud, thank you for being honest. But to put it in perspective, I don’t look forward to brushing my teeth, but I recognise its benefits—for both myself and others!

There are many things in life that don’t fill us with joy, but we still do them because they’re important.

However, it’s important to make your exercise time as enjoyable as possible. To achieve this, find something you do enjoy doing.

There are so many options available so experiment with various movement opportunities until you find something you don’t detest. Having more than one exercise option is another good way to relieve boredom—I alternate between swimming, running, cycling, paddling and doing resistance exercises so I never get bored.

Try to also add other stimulating elements to your exercise time—listen to music or an audiobook. Exercise in different locations, or do it with others.

Finally, don’t push yourself too hard if that isn’t your style. While some people get a kick out of pushing themselves—and good on them if they do it safely—remember that exercise doesn’t need to be unbearably painful.

Encouragingly, I know of many sworn exercise-haters who have come to thoroughly enjoy it in time. But it does take time, so persist through the early stages until those endorphins begin to turn exercise from a drag to a joy.

Michael Moore’s experience

Social activist and filmmaker Michael Moore happened upon walking as exercise in a surprising way. After posting on his blog one Saturday night how depressing he found the statistic that more people in the United States are on antidepressant medications than go to the movies, someone suggested that walking might be the antidote.

To test it out, Michael stepped outside and went walking. Several hundred nights later, he’s still walking.

Why? ‘I feel great. I can see my feet! There they are! Hello, feet! Wanna go for a walk? The feet say YES!’

‘Ask yours right now.’

Darren Morton is the lead researcher at the Lifestyle Research Centre at Avondale College of Higher Education and the author of Live More Active.

Category: Physical Health

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