Time is NOT the No. 1 Reason Folks Fail to Exercise

Posted On Feb 24, 2014 By Tim Arndt, Resistance Training Specialist

The reals reason why people do not exercise

Lack of time is NOT the reason folks fail to exercise. It's because they've decided that the time needed is not "worth it." They'd rather do something else more enjoyable … like watching TV or meeting friends for happy hour. Can you really blame them?

Everyone has a decision to make about how to spend their time, and the busier people are, the pickier they will be about how they choose to spend their time. The pickier they are, the less likely they are going to choose activities, such as exercise, that offer less excitement or are painful.

The fitness industry's quest to reduce the amount of time needed to exercise has led to "fast food" workout programs that are short in duration and extremely high in intensity. Great! Workouts are shorter … but folks are still using time as an excuse! Why? I believe it's because of the way we have been offering up exercise! Programs are high impact and very intense. The problem is that the folks who aren't working out are NOT CAPABLE of handling these "boot-camp," "Insanity-style" workouts. These are made for folks who are already in good shape and can handle the beating. It's the wrong crowd! We are barking up the wrong tree and haven't solved a thing.

Because of this, most folks think of exercise as being extremely exhaustive. It hurts. It's not fun. And worst of all, it's not sustainable. Even if they do get results, they still haven't solved the problem if it's not something they will continue doing.

This is just another reason I think we need to step back and examine the way we promote and offer fitness. It shouldn't be painful. Folks shouldn't feel like they are beat down and constantly in "recovery mode." It SHOULD BE pleasant, energizing, simple and sustainable. What would you be more likely to do? Something that looked simple and easy, or something that looked like it might break you? This begs the question: Are we actually intimidating people with these workouts rather than motivating them to get started?

It's not 100 percent "the people's" fault they aren't active. I believe the exercise industry as a whole must also take responsibility. It is OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO OFFER UP A POSITIVE, ENJOYABLE EXERCISE EXPERIENCE. Make that happen, and I guarantee time will no longer be the No. 1 excuse for not exercising.

Trainers, if your clients are giving you the "time" excuse, don't point the finger at them. It's time for you to re-evaluate the experience you've offered them. Think about it this way. Clients don't show up to their second session with you because of the great results they got from the first session. They make it to their second session because of the experience they had during the first session.

As important as results are, the experience someone has with exercise is equally important to creating a lifestyle change. Reducing the time of a workout is not the answer. Making the time "worth it" is the answer to getting folks off the couch.