The top reasons for physical inactivity are either genuine or perceived barriers. Genuine barriers include convenience/availability, environmental/ecological factors, or physical limitations. Perceived barriers are lack of time and boredom or lack of enjoyment. The 8 excuses for not being fit for the most part can fall into these categories.
The lack of time is one of the biggest myths that is attributed to lack of physical activity. A survey conducted by Shaw, Bonen, & McaCabe (1991), showed that of 20,000 people, the ones who stated “lack of time” as an excuse actually performed for hours of activity per week, drawing the conclusion that exercisers had better time-management skills than non-exercisers.
Think of your body as a car. There is a term in the industry known as preventative maintenance i.e. oil changes at regular intervals. You do this to prevent serious engine damage. The $30 or so a month for a gym membership, which is what it roughly costs to change your oil, can save you a small fortune if you happen to need a prescription for health problems. The monthly membership is a small price to pay to ensure a health life as Jillian Michaels implies.
A good rule of thumb to live by is if you see it you will eat it. Keep the junk food out of sight. Keep the fruits, granola bars, nuts, and any other healthy food items on your counters. When the next hunger pang strikes you are far more likely to grab the healthy items since it is the first thing you see than go scavenging for the junk food.
Boredom, plateaus, and lack of motivation are all intertwined. Exercise does not have to be all about counting time, calories, sets, or reps. Exercise is what you make it. Paddle boating in the inner harbor, running the Baltimore marathon with a group of friends, or participating in recreational sports are all great ways to keep exercise fun. Variations of physical activity will also help prevent plateaus. The body adapts to the stresses you put it through over time and it seems like you can no longer lose weight or make strength gains. By shocking your system with either new means of physical activity or switching up your regimen entirely or just some exercises, reps, sets, or weights, will keep your body in a state of shock and recovery, ultimately ensuring your goals be reached.
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