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Bust through the obstacles to exercise

Ever find yourself experiencing a roadblock when it comes to exercise? Whether it’s mental or physical, does that roadblock seem too difficult and almost next to impossible to get around or over? The thought of exercising “sounds” great, but the action feels like such a chore.

Obstacles are expected if you’re running the 400-meter hurdles but not always expected when it comes to general exercise. How do others make it look so easy and fun?

Well, it’s all in how they see the hurdles and maneuver over them.

In high school, I ran the 400-meter hurdles. It was one of my favorite track and field events. But there were times when I didn’t fully clear the hurdles and ended up knocking some over. While knocking a hurdle over doesn’t disqualify you from a race, it can slow up your pace.

That is exactly what obstacles do related to exercise … they slow up your pace for best success.

Obstacles can keep you from reaching your wellness goals if you allow them to control your thoughts and emotions toward exercise.

For instance, one of the biggest “perceived” obstacles around exercise is that people are too busy to fit a workout into their day. I always find this “obstacle” interesting and entertaining.

I’ve had many of my clients write out their detailed daily events for an entire week—from sun up to sun down. They are always surprised to see how many hours are wasted in a day without intention.

I’ve actually had one woman report that she spent 22 hours a week watching television, and yet said she didn’t have time to workout. Very eye-opening! Just think if she used her TV time and did exercises while watching her favorite shows.

That’s one obstacle to get around easily.


Make a habit of watching your favorite show on the floor. Stretch during the show and during commercials hop up and do a few quick cardio bursts. A few of my favorites are jumping jacks, high-knees, jump squats, burpees, punch-outs and push-ups.

When you trade wasted time for productive activity, then you will reap the benefits of getting or staying healthy. A healthy body requires movement!

Maybe you have the “obstacle” of having a desk job? Did you know that you can workout throughout your day and receive great benefits physically and mentally? Working out all in one session isn’t mandatory to see success.

Get creative.

What if you made a conscious decision that every time you got up for a drink of water, to use the bathroom, the copy machine or whatever you do often within your day, that you would practice doing a set of one exercise? You could use your phone or watch alarm as a reminder to do 3-5 minutes of an exercise at the top of every hour.

I call it “Power by the Hour.” Do a set of squats, walking lunges, or a few Visibly Fit™ isometric presses. Doing something is always better than doing nothing. An hour of working out isn’t always doable for many who work and have a family, so creativity with your exercise is your answer.

It’s proof that having a desk job may feel like a hurdle, but it’s one you can jump over if you desire. It’s entirely up to you!

Are you too tired when you get home to exercise? That’s another obstacle (excuse) I hear often. The reality is that the more sedentary you are, the more tired you become. When you move your body and exercise, you’ll be more invigorated and have more energy … not to mention burn excess stored calories.

You can adjust your schedule to get in exercise by waking up earlier, doing your workouts throughout the day like I do or exercising immediately when you get home.

Here’s a tip—don’t plop down on the coach after work because you just might not get up. Press through the tired feeling and get some exercise. The tired feeling will go away, and you’ll have great energy all evening.

Simple adjustments and a renewed mindset toward exercise can get you over just about any hurdle that has been in the way. When you exercise, you feel better, look better, you have more confidence, a better attitude, you’re more productive and others become inspired by you as well.

So, get going … get your sweat on.

Wendie Pett


— by Wendie Pett

Pett is a nationally-renowned fitness expert and coach, mother, TV host, speaker, author and creator of the Visibly Fit™ exercise program. Learn more at www.wendiepett.com.