Solutions for the Most Common Excuses for Not Exercising

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Call it the exercise version of "The Dog Ate My Homework" in the Excuse Book of Life. If you've ever planned to work out - and then come up with an excuse - it's time to discover how to get back in gear. From the weather to money worries to time, weight loss expert Joy Bauer has come up with solutions for the most common excuses to skip exercising.

Excuse #1: The only time I can work out is in the morning, but it's hard to get my act together so early in the day.

We feel your pain. The alarm clock goes off, and it's so tempting to roll over and go back to sleep. But Joy wants you to overcome that with a plan to succeed.

Joy's tip: "Assemble your workout clothes, sneakers, gym bag, and snack (an orange or banana will do) the night before so everything is ready and waiting for you in the morning."

Excuse #2: It's raining...or too hot...or too cold.

Whatever the weather, we can promise you one sure thing: It will never be perfect. It's 98 degrees where I live, and I have no desire to go out in the heat. That's my excuse. What's yours? Let's see what Joy has to say:

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Joy's tip: "Keep a workout video or two on hand, invest in a home exercise machine and some free weights (or soup cans!), or just walk up and down the stairs for 15 minutes."

Our bonus tip: Have a dog? Play a vigorous game of catch in the house. Have a cat? Run around like crazy with a piece of ribbon. Your pet and your body will both benefit!

Excuse #3: I'm too tired.
Didn't get enough sleep last night? Stayed up late watching a movie? When you're really tired, it's time to keep your goals small and simple.

Joy's tip: "Drink some coffee or splash cold water on your face and commit to doing a five-minute workout. Chances are, five minutes of movement will be all it takes to motivate you to do another five, then another, and so on."

Excuse #4: I'm not losing weight — why bother?
If you're motivating yourself only by the number on the scale, it's time to recognize the multiple benefits of exercise.

Joy's tip: "Remind yourself that you're exercising not only to lose weight but to improve your health, your balance, your flexibility, your strength, and your mood."

Excuse #5: I'm bored.
The little kid in you occasionally comes out. And the message: "I'm soooo bored." But that's not a real excuse, says Joy.

Joy's tip: "Switch it up: Try a new piece of equipment at the gym, change your running route, alternate your activities, get an exercise buddy, join a group, take a class, buy an audio version of your favorite book."

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