It's approximately 5pm, there's an hour or so left of work and the internal debating continues, to gym or not to gym, that is the question. If it was a work meeting or a dinner date with a friend would it be such a dilemma? Probably not, but the impending sweat-fest, miles to be clocked on the treadmill, fear of someone seeing you in a post-workout state and the general desire to just go home and chill are just a few of the reasons why taking that trip to the gym seems like such a huge decision. As a personal trainer I feel it my duty to motivate, to break these barriers and to turn around these negative gym mindsets. So here goes..
Reason no.1: You simply feel too tired...
So it's been a long day, all you really want to do is curl up on the sofa with a box of chocolates and a load of reality tv. However at this point I would encourage a dose of thinking ahead. How are you going to feel three hours down the line, 1000 calories later and even more fatigued and lethargic than prior to the binge fest? Probably disappointed, considering starving yourself the next day to make up for it and thinking of ways to get out of tomorrow night's plans in a new attempt to get to the gym. Rewind and get over the tiredness, so what if you're a little sleepy, let's face it, is there ever a time where we wouldn't want to be lazing around? The answer is probably no. So banish this thought, consider the consequences of a good session: you're more likely to have a healthier dinner (as the gym seems to have this effect on many people); you will undoubtedly sleep better; and you will experience a load of positive endorphins pumping around your body, undoubtedly putting you on an energy-fuelled high.
Reason no. 2: You have spent the day eating junk food so what's the point?
Yes many people do think like this, but seriously this is one of the most shameful reasons in the book. There is always a point in going, even just to start burning those extra calories you have put into your body. If you get into a habit of not hitting the gym every time you eat badly you most certainly run the risk of always choosing food over the gym. So suck it up, admit you've given into the food monster and then move on and make yourself feel better by doing something about it.
Reason no.3: (This one's mainly for the girls..!) I don't have time to wash my hair!!
I kid you not this is a frequently used excuse by many women, but thanks to a whole range of beauty products I feel this no longer stands, and the reason why: dry shampoo! This tried and tested method (by yours truly) leaves the hair looking, feeling and smelling fresh whether you have been involved in a boxing class or spent an hour on the floor in distorted yoga positions. Granted it's not so useful if you plan on going swimming, but common sense encourages one to swim on the days you do have time to wash your mop!
Reason no.4 I'm feeling really fat at the moment, I don't want anyone to see me in my gym kit
Ok so we all have moments of feeling self-conscious, but the mere fact you are in the gym shows you are in the process of working on making yourself look and feel better. You will only get yourself in a position to feel more confident in the gym if you keep going and you have to start somewhere. My advice: wear something you do feel comfortable in, black always being a good choice and a long baggy t shirt if you are really keen to cover up any lumps or bumps, which will of course go as you get on with training.
So there we have it, excuses galore and possible ways to overcome them. Let's face it, getting to the gym is all about the mindset, once you're actually through the door and changed into your kit the hardest part is over. Remember, 'the body achieves what the mind believes' so waste no more time thinking, take the wise words of the sports brand Nike and 'Just do it'.
Follow Emma Pollard on Twitter: www.twitter.com/emmapollard84