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Busting the excuses for not exercising and being out of shape - part 2

Updated on February 17, 2010
image taken from Creative Commons- Attribution licence
image taken from Creative Commons- Attribution licence

This is part 2 of my "Excuse Busting" article on health & fitness. You should read part 1 first!

I have a limited diet, for some reason.

Forget the myths about what people into training have to eat. Everyone knows about those ideal body building diets of egg whites, tuna, chicken breasts and more tuna, but if you're vegetarian, vegan or just fussy you can still make the best of the choices available to you.

I had a dreadfully unhealthy diet for a long time (pizza every day, loads of hot chips or french fries, soft drinks and sodas) , and can't really remember ever having a truly healthy meal before I was 28. If I can change my habits and get my nutrition together, anyone can.

I have a thyroid condition and can't manage my weight. It is not possible for me.

This is sometimes a legitimate excuse, but my observation is that the thyroid gets blamed a lot for a slow metabolism & associated weight gain that is really due to poor nutrition and bad eating habits; In most cases not eating enough, and not eating regularly. So rather than having an eating plan that counters the effects of the under active thyroid, the subject has eating habits that exacerbate the thyroid problem and slows their metabolism even further.

I think you can have the defeatist attitude as stated above, or you can say "I have a thyroid condition so I have to work a little bit harder at managing my weight, but I'm going to try my best!"

(I actually had half of my thyroid removed when I was 25 due to a tumour, so I feel I can speak on the matter without offending anyone.)

I was never good at sport / I have never enjoyed sport.

I think this is possibly the biggest issue for a lot of people who weren't good at sport in school, lack confidence in their physical ability and generally associate sport with a lot of negative experiences and emotions. This is understandable, really. But the good news is, we don't have to be playing a competitive sport to get into shape. There doesn't have to be a team, a score or an opponent – we just have to get active and exert some energy! And if you do struggle a little, you might be surprised at how encouraging and supportive other people (trainers and other exercise participants) can be. Remember, a lot of them started off in the same situation as you.

I've always been fat. My whole family is fat. It's not as easy for me as it is for you.

You'd be surprised how often people tell me I'm just lucky to be in reasonably good shape, while they're overweight or obese. One time I was actually told this while I was having my after-gym protein shake, by a guy eating a bag of potato chips! I have to try to look on the funny and ironic side of this, and not take too much offence, because as you've read above I really have as many excuses as anyone else to be out of shape, but I've worked pretty hard to get (and stay) healthy. Luck really does not have much to do with it!

Some people may be genetically predisposed to carrying a bit more weight, and it is harder for them than other people. But even those people have the choice between trying their best and doing what they can, or giving up completely and doing nothing. By becoming more active and breaking out of bad eating habits even the most genetically unfortunate person among us will get some results. You don't even have to make all these lifestyle changes over night. Just work on substituting one poor food choice for one good choice each week (or even each month), and gradually increase your levels of physical activity. Even slow progress is better than quickly going backwards.

To summarise, you really just have to want it badly enough. Training leads to better physical & mental health, and a better quality of life. We all have our challenges and obstacles to overcome, but set the game up to win by focussing on what you can do, instead of what you can't. If you can't train every day, train every other day. If you miss a day, don't beat yourself up about it, resolve to make up for it with a great session tomorrow.

Stay focussed and live with passion!



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    • DearBandit profile image

      DearBandit 5 years ago

      I enjoyed reading part 2, thank you for the advice