5 Reasons You Quit The Gym & 5 To Get Back Into It
Our workout routine feels like the same thing every year: We workout, we lose interest and we stop working out.
What can we do differently? How can we guarantee that this year will be the year we stick to our workout goals?
Check out a few typical problems and how to ensure they won’t ruin your entire regimen this year.
Problem 1: You’ve Lost Your Motivation
The most common reason people stop going to the gym is that they lose their motivation. Maybe you just thought you would skip the gym one day. Maybe you thought you needed a well-deserved day off. Then the next day you were supposed to go to the gym, your best friend called and needed a shoulder to cry on. Then you needed to stay late. You slept in that morning and didn’t have time for your workout. The next thing you knew, you hadn’t been to the gym for your regular routine in weeks. Sure, you went once or twice. Yet the gym had somehow stopped being
Solution: Reignite Your Motivation
It takes 19 fails before we figure out how to do something right. Maybe you convinced yourself that you didn’t need to go to the gym once or twice. Maybe you felt defeated because you stopped going to the gym; maybe that made you so depressed that you stopped going altogether. Failing is a natur
al part of the process. We need to stay positive to reignite motivation.
Whenever your brain thinks the words, “I can’t do this,” you need to reframe. Try instead, “I know I can do this.” Retraining your inner monologue can give you the confidence and the positivity you need to keep on going and get back to your workout regimen.
Post positive motivational sayings around your home. Post photos of yourself from when you were at your target weight. Write down your goals, and keep them in plain view, so you can remember them – especially when you know you might let your goals slide. Place Post-Its on your wine rack or on cracker boxes to keep your goals in sight.
Problem 2: Work Started Taking Over Your Time
We’ve all been there. Your boss asks you to stay late. Your project needs to be finished by the morning. The next thing you know, it’s midnight. You’ve eaten an entire carton of fried rice because you didn’t have time to cook anything healthy. You feel bloated and dehydrated. By the time you get home, you barely have the energy to set your alarm for the morning. You don’t get up on time for your morning workout because you went to bed so late. You repeat the entire process again the following day.
We’ve all been the victims of the late-night work session. Yet it’s important to keep our goals in sight – even when we aren’t the ones to blame. The process will simply continue if we don’t find ways to head it off at the pass.
Solution: Plan for "Failure"
While this might sound depressing, we’re not actually setting ourselves up for failure. We’re actually planning for alternative endings to our failure stories. Picture your worst case scenario. Maybe it’s staying at the office until midnight and eating takeout. Make a list of three or four things you could do to avoid missing a workout when this happens.
It could look something like this:
Plan to go for a run at lunch the next day - If you have your workout clothes packed in your office or car, you can simply rearrange your workout time. If lunchtime is not a great time for you, schedule your workout at other times. You could do planks for five minutes between meetings.
Workout 20 minutes extra the following day - You can always plan on doubling up your workout on the following day. Even if you only still complete your regular workout routine, you still haven’t thrown the baby out with the bathwater and kicked your goals out the window too.
Force myself to wake up with enough time to work out for at least 10 minutes - Forcing yourself to wake up 10 minutes early after a long night to fit in a 10-minute workout is one of the best ways to stick to your goals. You haven’t technically missed your workout, so your brain can’t go into shame mode to try to sabotage your workouts for the next month.
Wake up at my regular time, and see how I feel - Forcing yourself to wake up after six hours of sleep isn’t going to kill you. It’s ideal to get eight hours of sleep every night. Missing a full-night’s sleep sometimes happens. It’s probably happened after a fun night with friends. You can definitely make it work every once in awhile for a workout too. If you’re feeling blue because you ate a huge amount of takeout, try packing a few healthy snacks to eat at work too. Even if you have a piece of fruit and the lo mien, you’ll probably eat less takeout because you already enjoyed a healthy snack.
Problem 3: Happy Hour is Just Too Tempting
Why does it feel like our friends and co-workers are always trying to sabotage our workout goals? We’ve said no at least three or four times. Yet they keep nagging us to skip the gym in lieu of the bar anyway. You’ve said no already! Then you find out
your friend you haven’t seen in a million years will be there. Maybe you’ll go for just one drink. Before you know it, you’ve downed a huge plate of French fries and two margaritas. You’ve already blown your workout. You might as well stay for a third, right? The next day, you sleep in. You’re depressed, so you eat banana bread on the way to work. After work, you need to go home and eat a bunch of carbs to make up for the lack of sleep.
Solution: Make Workout Dates with Friends
When your friends peer pressure you into going to happy hour, think of the friends who are peer pressuring you to workout. The sober ones are always more convincing than the tipsy ones. Making workout dates can help you keep promises to others when you have a hard time keeping promises with yourself.
Problem 4: You Weren’t Noticing Changes
Seeing results is dependent 30% on exercise and 70% on nutrition but most people don’t do the latter half which is why people get frustrated when they don’t see the pounds melt away. One of the main reasons people stop working out is because they weren’t seeing changes or their changes plateaued. This is an extremely normal part of the workout process.
At first, we usually see huge changes to our bodies. We lose weight and inches. Fat starts to melt away. Then the changes are less drastic. Why workout at all if we look the same at the end of the day?
What’s worse is when we don’t even see changes from the get-go. In fact, sometimes we even gain weight after starting a workout regimen! What’s the point?
Solution: Get help from the pro's
Jennifer recommends you book in for a comprehensive nutritional assessment, mentioning that many people come to her having instigated a regular and rigorous exercise program but feeling frustrated as, while they feel fab, they just aren't seeing weight loss results. If this is happening to you don't worry, it can be corrected.
Exercise makes you hungry and most people tend to eat more when they increase their exercise. I'd highly recommend visiting Jennifer for a Nutritional assessment. She will help you to modify your diet to be more suited to your goals, while still satisfying the post-workout tummy growls.
Getting personal trainer can also be helpful. A trainer can give you professional advice on how to deal with weight gains and plateaus. A trainer can reassure you that you’re making the right changes – even when you’re not seeing results.
Jennifer works closely with many personal trainers around Sydney and can recommend someone great for you. Even better, why not book in a session with sports Chiropractor Dr Riaz Behi who can give you a thorough
examination and then recommend adjustments to your training schedule to suit your body's needs as well as your health goals.
Problem 5: You Sustained an Injury
Maybe you sprained or broke your ankle this year. You’re in too much pain to run or walk or bike or complete your favorite exercise. Even after the cast comes off, you are still in too much pain to continue your old regimen. It’s not your fault you got hurt. Yet continuing your workouts would be really bad, right?
Solution: Get Professional Advice
You probably don’t need to stop working out altogether. In fact, you probably should continue some form of exercise. Book in a session with Sports Chiropractor Dr Riaz who can offer treatment and also give you professional advice on how to exercise safely without exceeding your personal limits (or re-injuring yourself).
Even if your leg is broken, there may be other suitable exercises such as upper body workouts. There’s plenty of workouts that can keep all areas of your body fit.
Once the cast comes off, Dr Riaz can help you get back to your old self and help you learn how to run or walk on your ankle to ensure you don’t repeat old mistakes and cause more injuries. The important part of the recovery process is making sure you keep your practitioner in the loop as much as possible to avoid future injury (and future excuses to stop going to the gym).
Don’t be like the you from last year. Don’t let yourself fall into old habits. Keep working at your workout routine, and next year you’ll be wondering how you ever stopped going to the gym in the first place.
Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who is trying to be healthier this year. She currently writes for AEDs Today, a leading supplier of automatic external defibrillators including popular models such as LIFEPAK AEDS.