Top excuses we make not to exercise

One of the most used excuses not to exercise is ‘not having time’ and this was recently backed up with a study led by the Australian National University, who found that one in five people aged 25-54 years old claim they ‘don’t have time to exercise and eat healthy food’.

On this note, we thought we’d survey some Exercise Right users to investigate the excuses people use to avoid exercise, here’s what we found.


Here are some of the top excuses we make not to exercise and how we can overcome them:


‘I don’t have time’

I don’t have to time to exercise translates to I don’t have time to look after my health. If you were to write down a diary of your day, you would find that you could easily incorporate more movement into it. Whether this be getting up 20 minutes earlier to go for a walk before work or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

‘I’m too tired’

Countless studies have shown that exercise in fact reduces fatigue. Rather than totally skipping exercise, incorporate strategies to make sure moving is a priority. Try doing a shorter workout, or something less strenuous than you usually would, like a yoga class or even just a 20 minute walk.

It can work to your advantage if you can get your workout done in the morning, and give you a burst of energy for the day!

It’s too easy at the end of the day to put exercise on tomorrow’s ‘to do list’. However if you really are too tired, don’t feel guilty, take a rest day and recharge your batteries!

‘It’s too expensive’

Exercise can be as cheap (literally, free!) or as expensive as you like!

The cheapest and easiest form of exercise, is walking or running. This doesn’t have to be a 5km daily walk – researchers in the US have found that just 20 minutes of walking a day can greatly benefit your health, having anti-inflammatory effects and lowering the risk of chronic conditions such as obesity. Not sure where to start, why not download the free Nike Running Club app that provides you with guided runs.

If you want to step it up a notch whilst you’re on your walk, you can make the most of your own body weight, and outdoor workout stations, or even picnic benches which are great for bodyweight exercises such as push ups, step ups and tricep dips, to name a few.

Want some extra ideas? Click here.

‘I ate well today so I don’t need to exercise’

Exercise isn’t just about nutrition, or weight. Exercise is good for your heart, your circulation, your joints, your mental well-being…the list goes on.

The possibilities are endless. Health should be a combined effort of exercise and nutrition, but exercise provides many health benefits that nutrition alone cannot.

‘I’m not fit enough to exercise’

Everyone has to start somewhere, and this should be one of the main motivations to start moving if you really are that unfit that you’re too scared to start moving more.

There are exercise options for everyone, and if you’re really concerned about where to start, you should contact an Accredited Exercise Physiologist who will be able to start your exercise program, safely.

‘I don’t like exercise’

Exercise definitely isn’t a one size fits all approach!

That’s why it’s great that there are so many options! You have to find the exercise that’s right for you. If you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, try something new!

There are options for everyone and don’t fall into the trap of thinking exercising regularly means having to attend 5 gym sessions a week, it is just making sure you are moving your body regularly, this could be walking your dog, or going for a swim.

‘It hurts to exercise’

Often, people with chronic pain are worried exercising will cause flare ups and more pain. However, significant research has shown that exercise is an essential aspect in the treatment of chronic pain. Research has shown that exercise can be an effective way to reverse this downward cycle of worsening pain, and over time help those with chronic pain engage more in activities of enjoyment and essential activities of daily living with greater ease.

If you have an injury, you can focus on another area of your body e.g. if you have an upper body injury you can focus on your lower body and visa versa. If you’re concerned, or experience pain whilst or after exercising, always consult a medical professional or Accredited Exercise Physiologist.