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What's Your Exercise Excuse?

Forget excuses! Start a list of reasons why you want to exercise

'I Hate Exercise'

"You just hate what you think exercise has to be," Price says. "It doesn't have to be gyms, cardio machines, and that stuff." Think of exercise as activity. "Think back to what you loved doing as a child," she says. "Children never think of activity as exercise." How about skating, cycling, dancing? "Do it for fun!" she says. "Who has ever said, 'I hate walking on the beach'?"

"You don't have to wear Lycra and sweat," she promises.

"If you don't exercise now," Kimiecik agrees, "you need a physical and mental transformation to start." Instead of hating exercise or the idea of it, spend time thinking about what you want your body to do for you.

Ask yourself these three questions:

  • Do I want this body to carry me into old age, move around, travel, and not fall or become ill?
  • Do I want to feel on top of things mentally?
  • Can I become a success on my own terms and not compare myself to others?

"This is simple, but not easy," Kimiecik says. "You have to take time to think about it and feel it, rather than just saying, 'I hate exercise.'"

'I Am Too Tired'

"There is some research that shows that aerobic exercise melts away tiredness quickly and strength training (weights) gives you a more energetic feeling later," Price says. "I think anything that increases your circulation makes you feel more energetic."

The key is not to overdo. "Start small," Price says. Write down your goals and break them into steps and then break down one step into a manageable first step. Say your goal is to do aerobics four times a week. If you run out and do that, you may be too tired to keep it up. Instead -- first step -- decide whether you want to go on a treadmill, walk the dog three miles, or workout at home with a video. Or maybe you want to take tap dancing.

The first step, which won't leave you breathing hard, is to find a nearby studio. Next step, drop in, see what the classes are like. No great effort, no financial outlay. (If you are scoping out a gym, Price recommends going at the same time you would normally go. What's the crowd like, are overweight people welcome there? A gym should be, above all, convenient. Get the shortest contract you can, after checking it out on a day pass.) When you do decide on a studio or gym, Price says, tell yourself you will go so often they won't make a cent on you!

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