My dog ate my swim goggles…and other totally lame workout excuses

swim goggles

If you forget your goggles and towel, you can still swim!

“My swim goggles are to blame”…or at least that’s what I told myself when I got to the gym to do my morning swim and I forgot my towel and then my swim goggle strap snapped. Uh oh. Can’t get in the pool without goggles, I told myself (even though, I failed to remind myself that for years I swam without goggles). And I promptly picked up and headed home. LAME! There are a 1,000 things I could do at the gym without swim goggles: swim a few laps of side stroke, do some water running, pick up the water weights by the side of the pool….you name it. Get moving, instead of going home. But I went home—after I motivated and got my butt to the gym in the first place.

But I’m finding the excuses for not working out are coming up more often: oh no, slept in a bit this morning, too late to go to the gym; too tired; too cold. What’s going on? Well, I’ve compiled a to-do list that will negate the most common workout excuses out there:

1) Pack your gym bag the night before so you don’t forget your towel and other gear. I haven’t been doing this and hence the bleary-eyed packing at 5 a.m. Of course, I’m going to forget stuff at that crazy, insane hour!

2) Make sure your iPod or mp3 player is CHARGED. This is a common excuse. No music, no intense workout. Plug this in the night before so it’s juiced up and ready to go (just don’t forget to put it in your gym bag!) I’m starting to tell myself that I’m bored of the same old playlist…but that’s another thing on my to-do list: compile a new motivating playlist. Doing that next…

3) SET YOUR ALARM!! My 3-year-old daughter inevitably ends up sleeping in my and my husband’s bed—squished between us. So setting the traditional alarm clock just won’t work as I’ll wake her up (and she’ll start crying because I’m heading out “No want you to go” and I’ll feel guilty and…but I digress) and my husband. I found this amazing alarm clock that you put under your pillow and it vibrates when it goes off. It’s called the Under Pillow Vibration Alarm Clock from LifeMax (www.lifemaxuk.co.uk—a UK company but it’s legit and they ship to you) and it’s designed for the visually or hearing impaired, but it works for anyone who’s an early morning exerciser—and doesn’t want to wake up her significant other or her kids. I have one and I haven’t been setting it, telling myself I’ll wake up naturally. BIG LIE! Alarm gets set tonight…

4) Go to bed early. Early to bed, early to rise. I’m a morning exerciser so I can’t be out late the night before or I won’t want to or won’t be able to get up the next morning. Well, it’s the holidays and I’ve been up later and later. Tonight, stick to the bedtime!

5) Set out some warm layers (I have plenty stuffed in my drawer) so the “It’s too cold outside” [it IS in the teens now] can’t be an excuse. That’s why layers were invented. It is also dark in the morning, but this is part of the deal of exercising in the morning. To quote my daughter’s book Pinkalicious “You get what you get and you don’t get upset.”

Tomorrow morning I’ll be back on track…that’s the promise I’m making to myself. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes…

Valerie LatonaAbout Valerie Latona
As the former editor in chief of Shape (the active lifestyle magazine) for 5 years, I personally spoke with a lot of women (thousands over the years, from around the nation) and what I found is this: it's not easy to stay healthy, to get (and stay) fit, and to stem the weight gain tide (and even the tide of disease) that inevitably happens to us as we get older.