The end of the year is looming. For most people that means life is about to taken over by Christmas preparations and celebrations.
It’s a notoriously difficult time of the year to stick to your fitness goals.
Truth is, the reason why a lot of people struggle to keep up their fitness regime has nothing to do with it being this time of year.
You could simply be in the grip of some surprisingly common and widespread thoughts that sabotage your fitness regime.
These thoughts become more apparent at certain times of the year, like the summer months of July and August and the winter months of November and December.
See which one(s) sound familiar.
1. I DON'T HAVE TIME TO WORKOUT
This is probably the most common one of them all. When work or family commitments take over, we understandably tend to de-prioritise working out. The crux of the matter is exactly that: prioritisation. Granted, sometimes we simply have no option but to prioritise work or family, but often it’s a matter of choice. Is it really necessary to stay late at work, or are you not leaving the office because of the looks you’ll get when you leave earlier than usual? Do you really need to leave first thing in the morning to go see your parents/siblings/grandparents/auntie/uncle, or can you meet up 45 - 60 later and squeeze in a quick workout?
Chances are, you could probably fit a workout in if you had to, you just choose not to.
If making time for exercising makes you feel uncomfortable or guilty, realise that whilst work and family are important, so is your physical and mental health. Working up a sweat is known to boost both and when you feel good in body and mind, the benefits can be felt in your professional and personal life too.
Instead of seeing working out as something that you do instead of working of spending time with your family, see it as something that helps you to be better at work and at home.
Oh and by the way: short workouts are fine too, you don’t need to work out at least 60 minutes to make it worth your time. If you really are poor on time, just fit in a short but sweet 15 minute session.
2. WORKING OUT IS JUST A TICK IN THE BOX
Remember those days when working out meant either going for a run or going to a smelly, dingy and slightly gross gym? Yeah? Well, fortunately those days are long gone.
These days there are tons of ways to stay active. There is something for everyone. From boutique fitness and spinning studios to military fitness classes in your local park to at home workouts, like the BoxxMethod. There really is no reason to make working out feel like a chore.
Find a workout that you love and that makes you feel good.
Don’t drag yourself to that ‘Brazilian Booty’ class just because it promises to give you a pert bum. If you don’t enjoy doing it, it will be a lot harder to stick with it and find the motivation to go.
3. I'M INJURED OR UNWELL
It’s understandable to take a break from exercise if you’re injured or not feeling well. Tuning in to your body and giving it some time to rest or recover is incredibly important if you want to stay healthy and happy in the long run!
Having said that…
An injury or not feeling 100% doesn’t necessarily have to mean you give up on your fitness regime altogether.
Perhaps you could still do a low-impact and gentle yoga or pilates class. Maybe you could go swimming or simply go for a brisk walk. While you know your body best, it’s worth chatting to your GP or health practitioner about how you could stay active during times of illness or injury.
4. I'M NOT GOOD AT IT
Everybody knows that we’re all beginners when we start with something new, yet we’re incredibly tough on ourselves when we find ourselves in that position. Cut yourself some slack.
You don’t have to get it right. It’s fine to not master it the first time (or even the 10th) and, guess what, totally normal if you make mistakes, so stop being so hard on yourself.
It’s only workout after all!
“But people will judge me” I hear you think.
Maybe they will, but who cares. It doesn’t affect who you are and what other people think of you is always a reflection on their own insecurities and self-worth.
More likely though, no one will notice if you get things wrong or if you make mistakes. They’re either in their zone or preoccupied by what you think of them.
Funny how things work, right?
So if you’re new to something, let go of your worries, don’t take yourself too seriously and have fun with it.
The good news is that these thoughts are all just that: thoughts. You have the ability and power to change them - and now that you’re aware of the most common thoughts that stop you from achieving your fitness goals, you no longer need to fall victim to them. Go on give it a try!
If you want to read some more great motivational posts by Iris, have a look here
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