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When you don’t feel like exercising you can come up with all kinds of excuses. We get it: exercise is the worst. There are so many things you could be doing instead. You don’t have time. And so on, and so on. But exercising regularly has too many benefits for us to stand idly by while you pretend these are good reasons for not working out.

I Don’t Have Time

When something really important comes up in our lives, we find a way to fit it into our schedule—whether that’s a favourite TV show we’re excited to watch or a doctor’s appointment about something that’s really bugging us.

Regular exercise might not be as compelling as those things, but each of us has ultimate control over what goes on our calendar. It’s the rare human being who literally cannot make the time to exercise.

If it’s hard to figure out when you could possibly schedule a sweat session, track your time in a planner or in an app like RescueTime. You may be struggling to fit in a 30-minute workout but find that you easily spend that much time either goofing off or doing tasks that you could easily rearrange.

I Hate It

There are many different reasons you might dread your workouts. One reason is that you might not have found an exercise you enjoy yet. The obvious solution to that is, well, trying new workouts.

Unfortunately, some people just might not like working out. If you hate exercising, there are ways to make your experience more pleasant like doing something else you enjoy while you workout (such as watching your favourite television show or listening to music).

I Feel Like I Can’t Breathe

Shortness of breath is one of the main reasons people with COPD think they cannot exercise. Everyone experiences shortness of breath when exercising, but people who do not have COPD are able to adjust their breathing to meet their increased need for oxygen. When you are short of breath, you feel like you cannot get enough oxygen in your lungs. This may make you feel like you need to breathe faster. When you breathe faster, you will be unable to empty your lungs before the next breath. This is what causes the feeling of shortness of breath. For someone with COPD, breathing out for a longer period of time is helpful. This empties your lungs. It prepares you for the next breath.

Understanding how to properly breathe during exercise will improve your chances of success and sticking with a program. Doing pursed-lip breathing during exercise will help you maintain adequate oxygen levels and reduce shortness of breath.

In addition, always try to exhale, or breathe out, during the most difficult part of the exercise, and inhale, or breathe in, during the easiest part of the exercise. For example, exhale when you raise your arms above your head and inhale as you lower them.

I’m Sore

Strangely, the best thing for your soreness might not be taking a rest day. Obviously, don’t jump right back into a super hard workout, but you can perform more gentle exercises like walking or gentle yoga. When you work out in a certain way, you’re going to be sore, especially if it’s been a while since your last workout. But it doesn’t need to hurt to be effective.

I’m Already Tired

After a long day, the last thing you want to think about is working out, but doing something active when you’re tired can boost energy levels more than watching television does.

The key is starting slow. A lot of people will not work out on a consistent basis, so when they get back to exercise they’ll make the mistake of wanting to make up for it all.

I Don’t Have a Gym Membership

Finding a gym membership that doesn’t rip you off can be difficult, but there are discounts on gym memberships you might be eligible for—for instance, if you have health insurance. Alternatively, you could make your own gym on a budget.

Gyms aren’t required for working out. You can run almost anywhere or do workouts using just your bodyweight. There are also a lot of online workouts that you can do from the comfort of your home like Yoga Glo.

I Don’t Know Where to Start

There are tons of workout options for beginners. There are even apps that automatically generate workouts for you. What workout you choose isn’t as important as just starting, though.

Not everybody needs to do CrossFit. Not everybody needs to lift weights. I think there’s so much information out there that people get overwhelmed and they think they’re not doing anything right, but I believe that the most important thing is just to move your body.

So… what’s your excuse?