You know you should work out, but there always seems to be a good excuse not to.
There are so many legitimate reasons why you may have struggled to stay active this past year. The COVID-19 pandemic caused gyms and fitness centers to close for months. It also led to increased isolation, especially for older adults. And it left many people feeling anxious and sad.
But now that vaccines are being rolled out and the pandemic shows signs of turning around, you may be looking to get more active. Yet you keep seeing reasons to put it off. Well, no matter how good those reasons may seem, there is almost always a work-around.
Here are 5 common excuses for not being active and tips on how to push past each.
Excuse #1: I don’t feel safe
Depending on where you live and the vaccine availability in your area, you may have concerns about getting back in the gym right away. In the meantime, there are free, daily workouts available to the public on Facebook Live and YouTube , where you can enjoy a variety of classes suited for all fitness levels. And, Silver&Fit® members can access workout videos available anytime on SilverandFit.com.
Excuse #2: I can’t afford it
It can cost a lot to join a gym or buy your own equipment. But there are many ways to be active for little or no cost. Here are some examples:
- Stream online workouts, like those offered free and to the public on Facebook Live and YouTube . Or conveniently access thousands of workout videos on SilverandFit.com if you’re a member. Use your own body weight or household objects to provide resistance.
- Scout out a good place to walk or hike. If there isn’t a good spot close by, try a nearby mall or school playing field.
- Community centers may offer low-cost classes in yoga, dancing, or swimming.
Excuse #3: I’m worried about injuries
There is very little risk to bones, muscles, or joints if you are healthy and take it slow. Activity doesn’t need to be hard to yield benefits. But see your doctor first if you have a health condition or you haven’t been active in a while. Your doctor can advise you on the best activities for you and give you tips on how to stay safe. When you’re ready to begin, start slowly and increase your activity gradually.
Excuse #4: I already have pain
Pain keeps many adults from being active. But most people can enjoy physical activity. In fact, movement can actually ease some kinds of pain. Talk with your doctor about activities that are right for you.
Excuse #5: I just don’t feel motivated
It’s easy to get into a routine that doesn’t include being active. If you’re having a hard time being motivated, team up with a friend or family member. Make regular dates to walk or do an activity of your choice. It’s harder to slack off when others depend on you. And, once you get more active, you’ll want to move more.
Being active can benefit body, mind, and quality of life like few other things. It might seem harder as you get older, but the rewards are still well worth the effort.
This information is not intended to take the place of regular medical care or advice. Please check with your doctor before using this information or beginning any self-care program.
National Institute on Aging. (2020). Staying motivated to exercise: Tips for older adults. Retrieved from https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/staying-motivated-exercise-tips-older-adults#motivated
Robinson, L., Smith, M., & Segal, J. (2020). Senior exercise and fitness tips. Retrieved from https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/exercise-and-fitness-as-you-age.htm
United States Department of Health and Human Services. (2018). Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (2nd ed.). Retrieved from https://health.gov/paguidelines/second-edition/pdf/Physical_Activity_Guidelines_2nd_edition.pdf
World Health Organization. (2011). Global recommendations on physical activity for health: 65 years and above. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/dietphysicalactivity/physical-activity-recommendations-65years.pdf
This article was edited by Candace Hodges and clinically reviewed by Jossue Ortiz, DC.