Top 4 Excuses Women Use To Avoid Exercise
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Top 4 Excuses Women Use To Avoid ExerciseHow Is Your Internal Dialogue Keeping You From Losing Weight?
When we feel pain around body image, our relationship with exercise often falls into one of two extremes—either we avoid it or we use it as a form of self-punishment. Many women find themselves going back and forth between these two extremes, cycling between total neglect and extreme exercise fueled by pain and panic. At both extremes, if we hate the body we have and don’t show it any love and compassion, we turn exercise into something we can never enjoy. And this negative relationship with movement can throw a wrench in our weight loss and body confidence progress.
What is your first memory of exercise? Did some of your early memories around physical activity leave you feeling left out, embarrassed, or punished?
Whether or not they come from events in the past, often our greatest resistance to exercise lies in our beliefs. In some cases, our most limiting beliefs around exercise relate to our identity (who we are); in others, they focus on what we think is possible (what we can do). To continue unpacking the layers of our relationship with exercise so it doesn’t stop us in our tracks, let’s explore some of the most common negative beliefs we have in each of these areas.
1. Exercising just isn’t who I am.
The thoughts we think when we exercise determine whether it’s a pleasurable experience or not. Is there someone in your life with a healthy and empowering relationship to exercise? It doesn’t need to be someone you know personally. Just identifying with them or being inspired by their achievements can help you rebuild an empowering relationship with exercise. When exercise seems outside of our identity, when we believe it’s something other people do, we often adopt additional beliefs to support that one.
2. I’m just not good at it. Since exercise is often linked to sports in school, we sometimes think of it as a competition that we’re not “good enough” to participate in. As we have seen, beliefs often shape experience. When we believe something like I’m just not good at exercise, that belief becomes a fixed reality, something we don’t think we have the power to change.
When we get rid of that belief, we see that there is no good or bad, no winner or loser in exercise. Exercise is part of a sacred relationship we all have with our own bodies. Movement is a way to express our gratitude for being alive. We don’t need to be perfect when we exercise, and we don’t need to be fast or strong. We just need to support our health by moving our bodies on a regular basis.
3. I don’t like exercise. When someone tells me they don’t like exercise, I tell them that their body loves to exercise. What doesn’t like exercise is a mind that judges and punishes itself during the process. The fact is that the body needs movement to thrive. Research has shown that living a sedentary life is dangerous to our health and well-being. When we don’t move, we have more aches and pains and increase our chances of experiencing illness and disease. Although it’s good to know the physical reasons for movement, we still won’t do it if it causes us emotional pain. Until we’re able to create a positive emotional foundation for exercise, we simply won’t.
What’s the real reason you “don’t like” movement? Does it cause you to feel anxiety, fear, or some other negative emotion?
4. I’m too embarrassed to work out or move my body. So often, the judgement we fear from others is actually judgement we are putting on ourselves. We often have beliefs about ourselves that are incredibly cruel and can cause us to judge ourselves harshly.
How Is Your Internal Dialogue Keeping You From Losing Weight?
Do you hear a nasty judgmental voice when you move your body? Imagine the last time you worked out or did some form of physical exercise. When you have that image in your mind, what are you thinking about? Do you hear a voice that says something like:
• You’re doing it wrong!
• You can’t even keep up.
• You look ridiculous.
• You’re too fat.
• You’re too weak.
• This is torture.
• There is no point.
• You aren’t “one of those people.”
• Just quit.
• You’re embarrassing yourself.
• Everyone’s staring at you.
• How did you let yourself get like this?
So many intelligent, kind, and loving women are walking around listening to their harsh and unforgiving internal voice telling them who they are—and who they’re not. When we use tapping, we can finally quiet that negative voice and give ourselves the love we’ve been showering on others for years. Learn more about tapping in my book Tapping Solution for Weight Loss & Body Confidence: A Woman's Guide to Stressing Less, Weighing Less and Loving More.