Mental block when exercising.

Has anyone had experience with a mental block while exercising? When I try to exercise unless I have someone next to me, cheering me on, I end up quitting way before I've even started. It's like I'm ten minutes in, and something comes up, I gotta go to the bathroom, or I feel antsy and want to go sit down. Sometimes it feels like there is a magnet on the couch, and a magnet on my butt, and the couch is calling my butt to it. I know it sounds silly, and I almost need to just suck it up and do it. But I was just curious if anyone else felt this way, and how did they work through it?
I think it is probably from me being inactive for so long.
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Replies

  • 4bettermenow
    4bettermenow Posts: 166 Member
    edited December 2014
    I have. I hate working out. There are so many other things I feel I could be doing. But for the first time in years I am finally losing weight. The only way I push myself through those moments is thinking of future moments. I think of how I will feel when I am done. And how proud I will be of myself. Its the only way I can play the mind game. And, I started slow. If I started with a big bang and doing too much, within a week I stopped working out. So...walking. Walking was first for me. Not hard...not far..but enough that I was doing something. Next week I am starting a personal challenge for myself. 6 weeks of workouts I have mapped out. And I will take it day by day. Good luck..I know its extremely hard sometimes.
  • esjones12
    esjones12 Posts: 1,363 Member
    Your body likes consistency. So before (I assume) you were consistent at sitting on the couch. When you try to change what your body is used to it will rebel against you. You have to push yourself to make your new consistency working out. Eventually you will end up like me and when you have to rest for a few weeks due to injury your body starts rebelling because it isn't used to sitting on the couch - it wants to MOVE.

    Biggest tip would be to find workouts you love. Group classes sound like something you would enjoy. They also provide accountability, which is something I rely heavily upon. Though I have become more accountable to myself than I realize....haha.
  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,551 Member
    That's why I go to the gym- I won't do it at a home and I know I won't.

    But there aren't really distractions at the gym- I mean there are- but someone's going to poke you at some point and go "hey are you going to jibber jabber all night- or you going to work"
  • PRMinx
    PRMinx Posts: 4,585 Member
    Find a workout you love. Also, now that you know you do this, you have the awareness to call yourself out before you quit.

    Exercise isn't ever going to be easy if you're doing it right. As JoRocka would say....work through the suck.
  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,551 Member
    yes- yes I would say that.

    LOL- I totally agree- it's NEVER going to be easy if you're doing it right....I typically say when people ask my why I work so hard... (what a stupid effing question but I digress)

    "if being fabulous was easy- everyone would be"

  • SaintGiff
    SaintGiff Posts: 3,677 Member
    I'm not a therapist, but I play one on MFP. It sounds like you have yet to embrace the idea of working out FOR YOU. You're great at working out so that others approve of you, which is awesome but not even a little bit the same thing. And that's fine. Some people love it. Others don't. For some it's easy. They are natural athletes. I hate those people. Just kidding. Ok, not kidding. But for a lot of people it's a grind. And you have to learn to love the grind, just for the sake of grinding. That takes time and patience. You can't expect to love it right away if it's not your natural thing. Just keep trying. It's like the old P90X thing... just keep pushing "Play" and eventually it clicks.

    One other thought that people will probably hate me for is... if you find yourself really hating your workouts, start by working out to type. So many people on here try these various systems. Everything from the aforementioned P90X, to C25K, to StrongLifts. They are all great, in their own way. But they sort of miss the point for a lot of people. It seems people start them because "I want to look like that" or "I want to be able to do this". That's great if you're already in that place where you can embrace it. But if you are just starting out, and really struggling to feel the love, then take a step back, look at how you are comfortable using your body, and how you are comfortable approaching challenges, and find a plan that is geared to you. Find something that fits your mental and physical "type". Find that and you find the love. Find the love, and you'll soon be wanting to step outside that comfort zone and try all sorts of things.
  • Maybe you could join a fitness class? I know I enjoy working out with others.
  • tiffnkailey
    tiffnkailey Posts: 150 Member
    Thanks for the responses. Esjones, you are totally correct about the consistent sitting on the couch. I wasn't aware of how much I actually sat down all day, until I tried exercising, and making myself stand more. My body is like WHAT are you doing to me. lol.

    I have turbo fire, hip hop abs, and body gospel dvds, which I have used before, but since it has been a long time, I decided I will start slow.

    Last night I did ten minutes on my stationary bike, while watching the biggest loser. That is my plan, to do that each night, and try and work my way up to 30 minutes, making my legs stronger, so then I can try the dvds.

    My church used to have fitness classes for free, which I tried Turbo fire, insantity, and zumba. It was really hard, and I was out of shape, but I throughly enjoyed watching the fitness buffs do the exercises while I tried my best and giggled at not being able to keep up. I have a weird sense of humor.

    There is a gym called Trinity Fitness, I have been trying to get the nerve to go to, but it seems really hardcore with crossfit stuff, and pushing big tires around and things, that I might just wait a little while to try that one out. The good thing about that gym is its free to try, and then after it runs on donations, so there is not really a membership fee persay. Plus it is faith base, which is a good inspiration for me.
  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,551 Member
    Keep in mind with working out- it never gets easier- you just suck less- so the more you do it- the more comfortable doing the things becomes- you're still going to have to work hard- but it shifts from a general discomfort and a push back (*by your body) to you pushing your body harder.
  • enterdanger
    enterdanger Posts: 2,447 Member
    Listen to music? I find that I work out longer if I can set goals like "One more song..." Then I'll put on something like Knights of Shame by AWOLnation that's 12 minutes long. lol.
  • Capt_Apollo
    Capt_Apollo Posts: 9,026 Member
    you might have to leave your house to get your work outs done.
  • tiffnkailey
    tiffnkailey Posts: 150 Member
    Oh, I didn't think about that. One of my worst ever workouts is the eliptical, I hate that machine with a passion. I do five minutes of it and I'm sweating and gasping for breath (I have athletes asthma).
    When I watch the biggest loser they make people bigger then me, work out a long time on those machines, and I heard on one of the episodes that they worked out for five hours. I guess I haven't pushed myself, or been pushed enough to know what my potential is with workouts.
    I do know three flights of stairs going up gives me athma, and I start seeing dots.

    I probably should find a workout buddy, someone more experienced that can push me, and be like, It's ok Tiffany, you won't die, keep going.
  • yopeeps025
    yopeeps025 Posts: 8,680 Member
    Pick some goals OP. Work towards said goals. That should do this whatever funk you have.
  • Capt_Apollo
    Capt_Apollo Posts: 9,026 Member
    Oh, I didn't think about that. One of my worst ever workouts is the eliptical, I hate that machine with a passion. I do five minutes of it and I'm sweating and gasping for breath (I have athletes asthma).
    When I watch the biggest loser they make people bigger then me, work out a long time on those machines, and I heard on one of the episodes that they worked out for five hours. I guess I haven't pushed myself, or been pushed enough to know what my potential is with workouts.
    I do know three flights of stairs going up gives me athma, and I start seeing dots.

    I probably should find a workout buddy, someone more experienced that can push me, and be like, It's ok Tiffany, you won't die, keep going.


    if you have exercise induced asthma, you need to go slower on your work outs. if you are a hot sweaty mess after five minutes, you are probably starting off way to strong.

    also, if you're doing cardio workouts indoors, try setting up a fan pointing at you. i do that when i'm on my bike trainer.


    and learn to tell yourself that you won't die, that you can keep going.
  • JazzFischer1989
    JazzFischer1989 Posts: 531 Member
    I hear you. I like jogging but every single time I do it, about 3-4 minutes in, I have to pee, I realize that I'm 'not in the mood', I start thinking about how far I have to go, etc. But I just tell myself that I don't have a choice and I keep going. After about 10 minutes, I'm in the zone and I'm actually enjoying myself.

    Helps to have some music you really like. It can take your mind off the oh-sht-I'm-not-feeling-this-right-now thoughts.
  • PRMinx
    PRMinx Posts: 4,585 Member
    Oh, I didn't think about that. One of my worst ever workouts is the eliptical, I hate that machine with a passion. I do five minutes of it and I'm sweating and gasping for breath (I have athletes asthma).
    When I watch the biggest loser they make people bigger then me, work out a long time on those machines, and I heard on one of the episodes that they worked out for five hours. I guess I haven't pushed myself, or been pushed enough to know what my potential is with workouts.
    I do know three flights of stairs going up gives me athma, and I start seeing dots.

    I probably should find a workout buddy, someone more experienced that can push me, and be like, It's ok Tiffany, you won't die, keep going.


    if you have exercise induced asthma, you need to go slower on your work outs. if you are a hot sweaty mess after five minutes, you are probably starting off way to strong.

    also, if you're doing cardio workouts indoors, try setting up a fan pointing at you. i do that when i'm on my bike trainer.


    and learn to tell yourself that you won't die, that you can keep going.

    ^this

    Pretty much what I was going to say...slow it down, turn down the resistance. You don't need to be on the machine for 5 hours, but 5 minutes isn't going to do much for you. You should be working out at a pace you can handle for a little longer.
  • tiffnkailey
    tiffnkailey Posts: 150 Member



    if you have exercise induced asthma, you need to go slower on your work outs. if you are a hot sweaty mess after five minutes, you are probably starting off way to strong.

    also, if you're doing cardio workouts indoors, try setting up a fan pointing at you. i do that when i'm on my bike trainer.


    and learn to tell yourself that you won't die, that you can keep going.[/quote]

    lol thanks I will try that.

  • tiffnkailey
    tiffnkailey Posts: 150 Member
    I hear you. I like jogging but every single time I do it, about 3-4 minutes in, I have to pee, I realize that I'm 'not in the mood', I start thinking about how far I have to go, etc. But I just tell myself that I don't have a choice and I keep going. After about 10 minutes, I'm in the zone and I'm actually enjoying myself.

    Helps to have some music you really like. It can take your mind off the oh-sht-I'm-not-feeling-this-right-now thoughts.

    Glad I'm not the only one that has that feeling.
  • MsMargie1116
    MsMargie1116 Posts: 323 Member
    JoRocka wrote: »
    That's why I go to the gym- I won't do it at a home and I know I won't.

    But there aren't really distractions at the gym- I mean there are- but someone's going to poke you at some point and go "hey are you going to jibber jabber all night- or you going to work"

    ^^^^This right here^^^^ :smile:
  • kyta32
    kyta32 Posts: 670 Member
    Oh, I didn't think about that. One of my worst ever workouts is the eliptical, I hate that machine with a passion. I do five minutes of it and I'm sweating and gasping for breath (I have athletes asthma).
    When I watch the biggest loser they make people bigger then me, work out a long time on those machines, and I heard on one of the episodes that they worked out for five hours. I guess I haven't pushed myself, or been pushed enough to know what my potential is with workouts.
    I do know three flights of stairs going up gives me athma, and I start seeing dots.

    I probably should find a workout buddy, someone more experienced that can push me, and be like, It's ok Tiffany, you won't die, keep going.

    Don't try to tough out asthma. There's no shame in taking a little Ventolin (sp?) before your workout to prevent an attack. Lots of olympians and professional athletes do. If your body thinks you will asphixiate everytime you get out the workout dvd, it will fight you on it. Try to get positives associated with exercise.

    When I'm uncomfortable, I acknowledge it. And then I make a deal with myself to try a little longer, like just one song. Every day you show up to the workout is a victory. You will be slogging through at the beginning, and this is true for a lot of people. As your body adapts you will have an easier time getting going, and will find it is possible to go a little harder. Best of luck :smile: