Making a resolution is pointless if you’re not going to at least have a go at achieving it, so let’s get those poor excuses out the way now and set you on the way to starting the New Year with a bang.
Not enough time for exercise
With most of us up and awake for at least 16 hours a day surely you can find some time for a workout of some description. Maybe that involves getting up early and going for a run. Perhaps you could leave the house earlier and walk or cycle to work instead of taking the car or bus? Morning exercise is far easier to keep up, as the rest of the day’s demands have yet to get in the way of your good intentions.
I can’t afford the gym
Committing to get fit doesn’t have to involve the gym. There’s plenty you can do without having to splash out on gym membership. Look at your stairs, they could be great for an aerobic workout. How about using your own bodyweight for a workout or why not just go commit to going for a run or walk which costs exactly nothing. The only thing you may need to buy is some decent running shoes.
I can’t give up
Whether it’s drink, cigarettes, chocolate, take-outs or whatever, you can give up your bad habits. You’re not the only person to have tried to shake off an addiction of some sort. Get whatever help you can; attend a class or session with people who share the same goals. If your addiction or craving is really bad, then commit to cutting back rather than giving up completely if that’s a more realistic proposition.
I haven’t got enough time to eat healthily
Does it really take you any longer to eat an apple or banana as it does to eat a cookie or a chocolate bar? Clearly it doesn’t, so the same applies to the option of slapping a salt-filled ready meal into the oven or chopping a few fresh vegetables and giving them a quick stir fry. Healthy eating doesn’t have to be onerous or time consuming, so make it easy on yourself. You’ll probably be waiting far longer for a pizza delivery compared to the time it takes to rustle up a stir fry.
I’m too tired
Is the real reason you are tired because you work too hard or because your poor diet, lifestyle habits and general lack of exercise make you feel that way? It’s a Catch-22 situation; feel tired and don’t exercise and you’ll continue to feel tired, but break that cycle and you’ll be feeling invigorated in no time. Get tired of feeling tired all the time and break that cycle of lethargy.
I’m too big to exercise
Despite what they say, size doesn’t matter. OK, if you’re massively overweight and haven’t exercised for some time, it’s best to get checked out before beginning a program of exercise. But in the main, most people can get started even it’s just doing some walking initially. Committing to a program of gentle exercise combined with watching your diet will soon reap dividends.
I’m too self-conscious to exercise
Many people say they feel intimidated about exercising in public, because ‘everyone is looking at them’. Think again! Most people are too busy getting on with their own lives to spare anything more than a passing glance at anyone else, and if someone does look at you, they’re probably thinking that what you are doing is exactly what they should be doing. If your shyness is a real problem, then exercise at home away from prying eyes, perhaps by investing in an exercise bike or even a treadmill.
I can’t be bothered
Motivation is a genuine problem and one of the first things to go when trying to follow a goal. Stay motivated by setting goals with a friend who will help encourage you along the way. If your goal is to lose weight, then join a weight loss club with a friend and measure your success against one another. If one of you doesn’t feel like going, then the other person will surely drag the other out. Don’t choose someone you know is just as lazy as yourself!
I’ve got kids
Yes, you’ve got kids, and for sure they can be time-consuming and a great excuse not to stick to your resolutions. But everyone needs a break from the little darlings, so offload them for a short while with a family member, friend or neighbor and allow yourself an hour or so for an exercise-related activity or class. If you really can’t get away from the kids then try and involve them in your activities - go cycling, swimming, walking together - that way you all benefit.
I’m busy with work
‘Work to live, not live to work’ should be your mantra. Yes, you might be committed to your career or the need to earn more money (who couldn’t always do with more?), but that all comes to the detriment of yourself. Make time to commit to yourself, even if it’s just making sure that you set aside one or two work days a week where you categorically ensure that your lunch time or your end of day are precious and set in stone as your time for you.
The key to sticking to your resolutions is to make them genuinely achievable. Set target in increments and achieve a little at regular intervals rather than just saying you’re going to lose ‘X’ amount by this time next year. Setting long-term goals is all well and good but not if the goal is so far out you only get de-motivated when you think that you’re making very little progress towards it.