This week has been a doozy. On Monday I accidentally scheduled a meeting during my yoga class, and Tuesday my daughter was sick and had to stay home from school, causing me to miss my training session with Tomery. Grumpy, tired, and overwhelmed are a few of the descriptions I could use to describe my mood this week. Plus super guilty for missing my exercise.

Since I’ve started this journey, I’ve had a lot of reasons to skip the gym—things come up quicker than you can say flashdance. But I need to get a better handle on how I handle these disruptions and, especially, ensure I’m not making excuses.

Let’s face it, we live in a society of excuses. “I can’t because…” it’s probably the most overused and pathetic beginning of a sentence possible, and I’m guilty of using it. When I start to come up with an excuse not to go to the gym (I’m too tried, my back hurts, I have too much work to do), I ask myself: Is anything truly stopping me from working out?

If the answer is no, then I remind myself that I will feel better after going and that my excuses can wait. Besides, exercise boosts energy levels and will help my back, and there’s more to life than just work.

In other words, I make myself go.

If the answer is yes, such as I have a meeting or a sick kid, then I have to get creative. I pull out the kettlebell my husband bought me for Christmas or use my yoga mat to stretch or do some floor exercises.

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This is probably the most challenging factor for me because my life is full of obstacles. Looking at my calendar this month, every day has something on it—and that’s not including my kids’ and husband’s schedules. Now, after Monday’s double-booking, I'm writing my workouts not only in my fitness journal as I have been but also on my “real” calendar that pings me with a reminder an hour before and doesn’t allow me to schedule anything on top of my workouts.

As for those unexpected twists that arise such as injuries or illness, I’m going to make an effort not to beat myself up for missing my workouts when I have to. Guilt only adds stress, something I don’t need. Life happens no matter what and we have to do the best we can in the moment. If a few jumping jacks are all I can do, then that’s what I’ll do. When it comes down to it, on this journey, I’m living with the mantra: No excuses allowed.

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