1. It won’t help me. It won’t actually make a real difference in my health. I think I am one of those humans who actually cannot benefit from exercise.
2. It will be uncomfortable. I won’t like it. I hate being sweaty, hot and out of breath.
3. It’s not that important. After all, I’m so busy. To this excuse I pose the popular question, “What’s better for your busy schedule? Exercising once a day, or being dead all week?”
I’ll cover the motivation topic again in the last chapter of the book, but here’s a sneak preview:
You are never going to be motivated to exercise the way you need to exercise in order to be as physically fit as you need to be in order to live the quality life you want to live.
At least not at the beginning.
But you will become motivated—much more motivated, in fact, once you are well on the path toward being physically fit. That’s because motivation feeds itself and when you don’t offer it any food at the beginning (i.e., you don’t exercise) that motivation doesn’t have enough nourishment to live on its own.
So you’ll have to radically accept this truth: it simply won’t work to wait around until you feel like exercising. Feeling like exercising regularly is never going to happen out of the blue.
See, when you were young, your parents got you to do the stuff you were supposed to do. They provided the motivation for you to do things you did not want to do. Clean your room. Eat your broccoli. Save some money.
Now that you are a grownup you have to provide the rules for yourself, only you don’t want to. So you don’t. You have this idea that you get to choose anything you want and STILL have the same outcomes you used to have years ago. In your youth it felt so constraining to be told to do stuff that now you resist your own self when you tell yourself to do stuff, even when that stuff is going to increase your happiness.
It’s as if there’s a three-year-old somewhere inside you who’s still demanding ice cream for dinner, and in the mistaken belief that you are being kind to yourself, you give in. After all, you hate feeling like you’re forcing yourself to do anything.
That’s because you have not yet learned how to kindly encourage yourself to do what’s in your best interest. (It’s definitely not too late! More on this in a later chapter!).
Eventually, when you’re somewhere around 40 years old you run into a hard brick wall and realize that the outcomes you thought would magically happen have not actually happened. See, if you quit parenting yourself and let yourself indulge all day, the days and weeks turn into twenty years of self-indulgence. And you end up with an addiction, or two or three. Perhaps you aren’t addicted to cocaine (let’s hope not). But you are almost assuredly addicted to something. Sugar? Coffee? Fighting with your partner? Watching TV?
Whatever it is, this addiction takes up your time and energy and keeps you from being fit.
Exercise helps. Exercise will heal your mind and your heart. Exercise will help you feel better about yourself, and it will help you be kinder to your loved ones. And exercise will help you get rid of that addiction, too. One study found that people who exercise (training by lifting weights) were twice as likely to stop smoking as compared to a control group that did not exercise but instead watched health videos for the same amount of time per week .
As John Ratey, MD says in his book Spark, “…exercise is the single most powerful tool you have to optimize your brain.” 
It’s Not About How Much You Weigh!
I strongly encourage you to find reasons to exercise beyond wanting to lose weight. Losing weight is a good motivator for some people, but often once the weight is lost, the exercise is reduced, that is unless you fall in love with it and don’t want to give up having all that fun! And the overall benefits of exercise go much, much further than mere weight loss.
By the way, for women in particular, short-term exercise alone (without dietary changes) is not going to bring on significant weight loss. Not understanding this, I remember one summer when I was very committed to weight loss through exercise. I went to the gym regularly and I worked out hard. I gained 14 pounds and didn’t lose an inch. I did not make any dietary changes, and in fact I’m pretty sure I ate more because I was hungrier. I gave up when September came because I was so discouraged that I hadn’t lost any weight. A few months later a fitness expert told me that if I’d just stuck with it, I’d probably have started to lose weight.
There’s a study that looked at overweight women who exercised for 12 weeks and made no dietary changes. They didn’t lose any significant weight. I did the same thing, and gave up. I wonder what would have happened in the study (or to me) if it had been a six month exercise program.
One final note before I detail some interesting things exercise will do for you: ladies, if you are exercising with a partner and that partner is a man, try your hardest to ignore how much more easily he will lose weight and gain muscle compared to you. It’s not your imagination, and it is seriously annoying. Knowing to expect that difference between men and women regarding the immediate impact of exercise may keep you from giving up and drowning your frustration in a dozen red velvet cupcakes.