What I Learned From Skipping My Workouts!

Life is full of so many ups and downs. One day you’re feeling great and like you can conquer the world. The next day you feel completely defeated and want to throw in the towel. At least that’s how it feels for me sometimes.

I’m astounded by how my emotions fluctuate from week to week, especially with my activities of daily living. Case in point, for the most part I’ve been doing pretty good with working out consistently. I’ve been getting in about four to six days a week. Regardless of my eating habits, I’ve been consistent with that. Yet, last week I worked out less than I have in a very long time. I got in two days. Yep – you heard me – two days!

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So, I had to ask myself – “What the heck is that about?” What started the week off on the wrong foot was my work schedule. There were a couple of days I had to travel for work and I had to be on the road at 6am. That’s usually the time I’m going to the gym. I could’ve worked out in the evening, but I wasn’t that motivated. After driving all day, the only thing I wanted to do when I got home was plop on the couch and watch TV. Aside from my work schedule, the main reason I didn’t workout was because I just didn’t feel like it!

As the week progressed, I just didn’t want to do it. I kept putting it off and it ended up not getting done. That’s when I had to take a close look into why I was doing what I was doing. There are many times I don’t feel like working out, but I push through anyway. Why was last week so different?

I realized I was allowing my “feelings” to drive me. I have learned that if I want to be successful at anything I do I can’t consult my feelings. I kept waiting to “feel” ready – to “feel” like working out. What I learned years ago is if you wait to feel ready to workout you won’t get it done. At least that’s how it goes for me. That’s why I tend to follow the Nike motto of “Just Do It”. The truth is, energy begets energy. If I get moving, I’ll have the energy to do more.

I saw a quote on a friend’s timeline the other day that was very relevant to this blog. It got my attention and I wanted to share it.

“Do not wait to strike till the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking.” -– William Butler Yeats

What this says to me is you have to take action first. I have to create the sparks that are often needed in those situations that I don’t want to do anything.

So, the next time you are procrastinating on an important task – or delaying your workout – here are three things you can do to get you going.

1.       Commit to doing the task for only 20 minutes. This is really good when you’re delaying a workout. If you commit to doing just 20 minutes you will usually feel like doing more. Even if you don’t do more than that, you did what you set out to do. You can apply this to other tasks like working, writing, cleaning the house, etc.

2.       Don’t trust your feelings. In fact, don’t even consult your feelings. They will usually steer you wrong. If the only reason for not doing something is that you don’t feel like doing it – do it anyway.

3.       Remind yourself that energy begets energy.  Know that you’re going to feel much better after you do something that you didn’t think you had the energy or desire to do.

There you have it – some simple strategies for you. Which one of these strategies do you think will be most helpful to you? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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