Reader Weigh-In: When You Don’t Feel Like Exercising

In addition to providing an easy way to track meals and interact with other fit-minded folks, SparkPeople has some good motivational articles. I especially liked 40 Things to Try When You Don’t Want to Work Out, in which they asked their readers/members to share how they motivate themselves to workout. The responses are varied and sometimes repetitive, but it’s still an interesting read.

You can click the link to read the full article, but here are a few of the responses from the article that I’ve used now and then:

  • Do it anyway.
  • Tell myself to go for 15 minutes. If I still feel bad or unmotivated, I can quit. I have yet to quit.
  • Do a heavy house cleaning (vacuuming, moving furniture, scrubbing) so I have a reason to work out.
  • Find something new to do! If you run then go for a swim or a bike ride. Maybe you are getting bored with the same routine.
  • Put on my workout clothes!
  • Do a workout at home instead of going to the gym.
  • Remind myself why I started working out and how much better I feel and feel about myself when I am done!
  • Put on my workout clothes first thing in the morning. Once I’m in them there’s no reason to not work out!
  • Think how good I feel after a workout! Nothing else gives me that same feeling!
  • Think of all the people who can’t and I go do it and am grateful that I CAN.

And then, of course, sometimes I just give myself a pass. :) Not too often, though, because I generally enjoy exercising. My body, my mind, and my spirit benefit from it.

Weigh-in: How do YOU motivate yourself when you don’t feel like exercising?

16 thoughts on “Reader Weigh-In: When You Don’t Feel Like Exercising

  1. Im like you
    otherwise? I treat it like a job :) and remind myself 30 minutes is 2% of my day.

    • I make myself laugh sometimes trying to convince myself I’m too wiped out/sore/whatever to work out when all I really want to do is go to Target. :)

  2. Most of the time I want to exercise so… but those few times. with my experience, I know once I get there & get going, I usually am happy I went so that is my strategy. Get to it & see how I feel… 99.9% of the time I am so glad I went! :) I also remind myself it helps me allow myself those treat cookies on the weekend! :)

    • That’s true, Jody. I honestly can’t think of any workouts I’ve regretted. Well, except the one where my hip broke when I was two miles from my car. :)

  3. I have 2 modes- “I can’t wait to exercise tonight!” and the rest of the time. There’s no option, I do it. I spent far too many years not doing it. We have a scheduled rest day each week and it’s usually Saturday but if we have to flip flop it because our bodies need it, we will.

  4. Having an ultimate goal — for example, I’m running a half marathon in April and if I give my training a skip, I’m not going to actually complete the race. And that would be embarrassing.

  5. I’m fortunate enough to have an elliptical at home so I force myself to get on the machine for at least 5 minutes and at that point it usually seems like more work to quit than to just keep going to so I usually end up doing a full work out. It’s tough business though!

  6. I’ve tried the “give it 15 minutes” but with a twist. I’ve been walking 2 miles almost every day (50 miles in January). Today I just did not feel like walking. I got to the treadmill and made myself do one mile. I still didn’t feel better, so I left. But I came back later and did the 2nd mile. (I still didn’t feel like doing it, but I did!)


    • That’s an awesome one, Julie! I use it a lot in the warmer months, especially when I get busy and have a half hour here and a half hour there.

  7. If I give myself a pass, its either because I’m busy doing something else, or I really do feel too worn out. And in either situation, I try to tell myself to just look at the big picture. Its a whole life.

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