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7 Ways To Stop Making Excuses For Not Exercising




We’ve all been there. Despite having every intention of going to the gym in the morning, we somehow never followed through on this virtuous goal. We woke up to the tyranny of our alarm before the sun had even risen and thought to ourselves, “Do I really need to go to the gym today?” As if the answer were ever really in doubt. Decision made, we turned off the alarm, rolled over, and snuggled deeply under the covers.

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Or maybe it was after work. All we want is to go home, put on some sweats, and veg out with Netflix. Going to the gym when we’re hungry, tired, and utterly depleted from a long day at the office requires real dedication, and sometimes the vague promise of improved health just isn’t enough to motivate us.

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I get it.

But the fact of the matter is, we make time for the things we really want to do. I’ve never heard someone make an excuse for why they can’t play their favourite video game or catch up on the latest episode of Game of Thrones. While there are times when we are legitimately busy or truly do need (and deserve) to give ourselves a rest, for the most part, we make excuses to convince ourselves not to do something we already didn’t want to do.

Fitness can come in all shapes and forms, and I’m not saying that going to the gym is the only way to be active, or that being fit should be your only goal in life. But I think we can all agree that movement, of any kind, is essential to our health, and we often find ways to avoid engaging in it. So your ‘gym’ might be hiking, or playing a sport, or even just strolling around the neighbourhood — any and all of these things are going to benefit your physical and mental well-being.

It’s time we stop procrastinating and start responsibility for our health. Here are some of the most common excuses for skipping a workout, and why they don’t hold up:

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1. “I don’t have time today.”

We always have time for the things we value. If you think you don’t have time to exercise, chances are it simply isn’t high enough on your priority list. If that’s the case, you need to stop lying to yourself and admit that exercising isn’t all that important to you. And that’s okay. Once you’ve finished isolating the problem, you can work to fix it. You can begin to determine how to make movement valuable.

Maybe you’ve picked the wrong type of exercise — no amount of motivation in the world, particularly motivation driven by self-hatred, is going to get you to consistently show up to something you don’t enjoy. Exercise is not a punishment for eating things you like or for not having thin enough limbs. Exercise is a way to respect your body, to be healthy and vibrant and happy. It is self love, but only if you want to be doing it.

So, figure out what exercise you like. Maybe the gym thing isn’t for you. So what? Take up a sport, try yoga, drop in on a fitness class — there is going to be something that gets you excited. For many people, the social aspect of fitness is what keeps them coming back, and what drives them to work harder. We all feel more motivated when there are other people around, so why not take advantage of that?

For me it was rock climbing.

I’ve been a dedicated gym goer for many years, and I still consider weight training an essential part of my fitness regime, but I began rock climbing two years ago and still can’t believe how different it feels. At the gym I clock in and I clock out, but hours, even days, of climbing can pass by without my noticing. Surrounded by friends and challenging my brain and body in new ways, I get to watch myself improve with every climb, consistently beating my own personal bests while moving in a completely functional and natural way. Quite honestly, it’s my happy place, and I wish for everyone to find theirs, because when you do find your thing, you’ll know it. And it will change your life.

There are also shortcuts you can take and ways to plan ahead so that even the most time-starved can still fit in some exercise. Pack your gym bag the night before, plan your workout before you go, bring a snack so your energy doesn’t flag, and have food prepped at home so you don’t have to choose between eating now and eating well. And when you’re at the gym, throw in some Tabata to cut down your cardio session and do a circuit workout or a HIIT routine to maximize your training — this is my current favourite for a rushed morning. These types of workouts force you to work harder, not longer, allowing you to make the most of your limited time. Even 20 minutes a day, if it’s a quality 20 minutes, is going to do you a world of good.

2. “I don’t have a break from the kids.”

Last I heard, children have a lot of energy. Why not include them? Find a fun workout DVD and exercise with them at home, go outside and play some games, or take them on a hike. If you have an infant, try learning how to strollercize. Your baby needs time outdoors, too, so do yourselves both a favour and get outside!

3. “I’m so sore from yesterday.”

This is the one I struggle with the most, and sometimes we really do need to give our muscles a break. But most of the time what we need is to adjust our plan. If your legs are sore one day, work your upper body. Upper body sore? Do legs! If you’ve overworked both areas, that still leaves your core. Our core muscles repair far more quickly than those in our arms or legs, so unless you really went to town the day before, your abs are probably going to be fine the next day. The exception to this is if you’re just starting out, in which case you may need more time between your workouts to repair your new and lovely muscles.

The other option is to do a low impact workout like yoga, or even Pilates — although I can say from experience that an intense leg day followed by Pilates is still exhausting!

4. “I had a bit too much fun yesterday…”

Believe it or not, exercise is the best way to alleviate a hangover — not greasy food and yet more alcohol. Get yourself moving, sweat out some of those toxins, and I guarantee you’ll feel better. Depending on just how bad a state you’re in, you may want to skip some of the more intense workouts, like a HIIT routine, and you’ll need to drink plenty of water, but otherwise you should go for it. You’ll thank yourself after, I promise.

5. “I’m too embarrassed to work out in front of other people.”

The first solution to this problem is to work out at home until you feel more comfortable. You can even hire a personal trainer for a couple of sessions to show you the basics so you feel like you know your way around a gym, and most gyms offer free orientations.

The second is to wear looser clothing if you’re feeling self conscious about your body. If I’m having a “tummy day” — maybe my period is on its way or maybe I just ate too much (because I’m human) — I wear a looser shirt so I can just focus on my workout without worrying about my perceived flaws. It’s a simple solution to a temporary problem. If all it takes is a different shirt or pair of pants to make you feel comfortable and confident, wear the shirt and don’t berate yourself for needing that security blanket from time to time. Doing that inner work is important — getting to a place where you feel comfortable in your skin no matter what — but you shouldn’t also doubly punish yourself by avoiding exercise until you get there.

In general, however, I encourage you to push outside your comfort zone and trust in two truths about your fellow man. The first: Everyone is just as preoccupied with themselves as you are. In other words, nobody is paying attention to you. And the second: Complete strangers are not standing around hoping you’ll fail. And if they are? They aren’t very nice people, and you shouldn’t care what they think. Why wouldn’t you want people to succeed? If someone is laughing at you for not knowing how to do something, or for the shape of your body, they have obviously not addressed their own insecurities, and this failure is manifesting as bullying. If you should feel anything about this behaviour, it should be pity, for that person has not reached a level of self awareness where they can see how their insecurities are playing out.

6. “I don’t have a gym membership and the weather is terrible today!”

Between Instagram and YouTube alone, you have access to thousands of at-home and no-equipment workout videos. You’re not the only person trying to stay afloat in a busy, hectic world, and fortunately for us, other people have taken the time to share how they manage to stay healthy even on a tight budget and with small children around. All it takes is a little improvisation – use a chair instead of a bench, a pair of rolled up towels in place of gliding plates, and your own body weight as dumbbells. The options are endless, and there are videos to suit any budget and time constraints.

You can also pick up a TRX (or the knockoff version I own, which works almost as well) and turn every space you enter into your own personal gym — including the outdoors (when it’s not raining). At home all you need is a door to anchor it in place, while outside, a sturdy tree branch will do the job. You can work out every single muscle of your body with a TRX, and work it hard. And many people find it more enjoyable than traditional weight training because each exercise requires you to engage your whole body.

7. “I have so much work I should be doing.”

You sound pretty stressed out. You know what would make you feel better? A workout! Exercise releases endorphins, making us feel happy and energized. Movement enhances focus, boosts creativity, and improves mood. The best way to pull yourself out of a funk or even cure your writer’s block is to move your body. The science on this is firm and abundant, so I won’t bore you listing studies you can find on your own with minimal effort.

Taking precious minutes away from work to go exercise might seem counterintuitive — you are, after all, spending less time on whatever has you stressed out — and even selfish, but you will return with better ideas and an easier time concentrating, which means you’ll ultimately end up requiring less time to finish your task. Or you can schedule your workout for first thing in the morning (a habit I’ll promote to anyone who will listen, to the day I die); you’ll be amazed at how invigorated and even empowered you’ll feel for the rest of the day.

How do you motivate yourself to keep up with your fitness goals? And what setbacks have you faced? Share in the comments section below!

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

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5 Great Benefits Kids Can Get From Yoga




In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Yoga has a number of mind and body benefits, and those benefits have also been seen in children.

  • Reflect On:

    Should schools be incorporating yoga programs into their curriculum?

Kermit the Frog has a wonderful song – “It’s Not Easy Being Green.” And kids love this song because they can relate. After all, it’s not easy being a kid today either. More and more is asked of them in school; they are hurried from one activity to the next; homework begins at much earlier grade levels now, and then there are all of the digital distractions that top off fully exhausting days and evenings.

It’s Beginning to Show in the Classroom

Teachers are frustrated because attention spans seem to be so short and because they have to be entertainers if they want to engage learning in their classrooms. Parents worry that their kids won’t pass the standardized state tests that often decide promotion to the next grade. So, they cart their kids to tutoring sessions, among all of the sports practices. Kids just don’t have any non-stimulated time, and that is a huge concern. This is where yoga comes in.

Yoga – the Balance Every Kid Needs

Amidst the flurry of activity, there should be time for all kids to turn off their devices and tune out their activities and school work. There should be time for non-competitive physical activity, for some quiet reflection, and for the opportunity to enhance their ability to focus.

These are the big benefits of yoga and this is what kids can get when they learn and practice it.

  • Become aware of their breathing and the connections between deep breathing and the body’s feel.
    Techniques and games that foster this connection serve to improve focus, reduce stress, and actually cause the release of healthy hormones.

  • Balance: Techniques that focus on balance do far more than just develop control over the physical body. They assist increases in attention in natural ways, rather than through medication, which doctors are so quick to prescribe. As kids focus on a balance pose, they also clear their minds, thinking only of what their bodies are doing.

  • Kids have lots of natural flexibility – something that we adults lose as we grow older.  Doing stretching exercises increases flexibility, a flexibility that forms in muscles and joints and allows them to “yield.” Football players who practice yoga, for example, have far fewer serious injuries because they have developed flexibility. If flexibility exercises can become habitual with kids, they will perform better in any sport.

  • Focus and Awareness: A typical yoga exercise for young children is to have them close their eyes and focus on sitting just as a statue. They must become aware of all parts of their body in order to keep them still and stiff, and focus on keeping them that way. Then, when a short period of time is over, they are told to relax and just start laughing as hard as they can – a great release of energy and stress. They come to understand that they have control of their bodies and of their minds, and with this understanding comes confidence.

  • Relaxation and Meditation: This may be the most important benefit of yoga for young children. The early exercises of tightening and then relaxing muscles, of holding poses and moving from one pose into another, all take the mind away from the “harried” nature of their lives and have a strong calming effect. Meditation on their mats can occur as they sit in a pose or lie flat. In both instances, children can be guided to place their thought on a single thing – maybe a favorite pet or color.

Gradually, additional visualization can be added to meditation. One small private school has an assembly each morning. Children are on mats and perform yoga poses and exercises to music. Then, the “quiet” time begins. As they sit on their mats, softer music is played and they are asked to think of one thing they want to accomplish that day and to see themselves doing it – a small activity that inspires.

Yoga for kids is all about developing habits of body and mind working together to create a more balanced lifestyle and develop great study habits. When these habits are instilled early, they tend to “stick” better.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

Continue Reading


Why I Stopped Lifting Weights At The Gym & Do This Instead




Health and fitness are important parts of life, and are part of a mindset that I make sure is part of my day every day – even if that means just having an active rest day. I believe the body requires exercise every day. For a while I used to lift weights at a gym, but then that changed for me and I want to share some info about why I chose to leave that behind.

It’s not that there is anything wrong with lifting weights at the gym or at home, as there are multiple ways to “get results” in the fitness world. But I believe it comes down to enjoying something and asking what you want from your exercise. For me, right now, I use a combination of training styles, with calisthenics as the focus. With calisthenics (body-weight training) you can get all the same results as weight-lifting, become very strong, and build a truly firm foundation, while lowering your risk of injury significantly compared to weight-lifting.

Calisthenics (Body-Weight Training)

I, along with many others, strongly believe that calisthenics is the future of fitness. It’s already taken off in some countries and is now showing its spark here in Western culture -and for good reason. Many people I talk to lately seems to be looking for something different, as if they are bored of the same old gym/weight routine just as I was. It also seems people want to have more fun when they work out.

Calisthenics is about functional strength, natural looking bodies, free workouts, creativity, self-mastery, and healthy routines. It is also something many people can do. I believe that in general we are moving in this direction because times change, our minds change, and things seem to be shifting towards a more natural way of being, which means getting out of repetitive cycles.

Why I Left The Gym

I worked out at the gym for years and was lifting heavy. Did it work? Absolutely, I got plenty of muscle and gained strength. Exercising was part of my routine in high school, as I was inspired by a kinesiology course I took where I learned all about the body, muscles, nutrition, and how to work out to get results.

But I noticed that I started to get tight, I wasn’t flexible, and it was easy, even with proper form, to irritate joints when lifting heavier weights. I didn’t feel my whole body was getting strong either, just in certain parts doing specific things. Plus, I didn’t like the gym and lifting weights – the vibe, the repetition, the lack of creativity, the people so focused on hyping themselves up, looking at themselves in the mirror all day – it simply wasn’t for me. My goals were never about impressing people with my body. I wanted to be healthy, have functional strength, enjoy movement, have healthy joints, build strong neurological connections to my body, and exercise in an environment I liked.

Functional strength is strength that you utilize in everyday tasks. It also goes along with a lot of natural body movements. What I noticed in my experience from weight lifting was that I could get stronger at certain exercises yet I didn’t notice much functional strength increases versus training calisthenics. This was further illustrated to me when I would train my back and shoulders like crazy with weights, yet could only do a small amount of pull-ups. Weight-lifting exercises can often train very localized muscles, whereas with calisthenics it’s naturally more of a full-body workout. Again this comes down to what you are looking for. This was probably one of the most noticeable differences for me, I was gaining strength throughout my whole body in areas that I felt didn’t get touched when I was weight-lifting. Plus, doing calisthenics and avoiding heavy weights healed injuries that I had struggled with for years.

Coming from a point of having my back and core heavily injured, this was a huge transformation for me. The photo below is of me after only 3 months of calisthenics training. My form for this “human flag” is not perfect yet in this picture, but it’s not far off. Three months later (today), I can now hold that same move with straight arms and flatter legs.


Get inspiring tips and information about how I achieved this exercise and to get out of the gym and into nature! There will be a free 7 Day Challenge soon as well! CLICK HERE

Choosing A Workout That’s Right For You

First off, don’t let anyone tell you what routine you should be doing or what workout methods are best. You have to do what’s right for you, and being aware of your options will empower you. If you don’t enjoy your workouts, then you will have a hard time with motivation and in general you will be forcing yourself to do something you don’t like. Find what works for you, calisthenics is only one option out of many.

For me, getting out of the gym and into outdoor calisthenic workouts made me LOVE my workouts. Compared to when I used to lift weights, I’ve never felt this good. I’m stronger and more flexible than I have ever been. My mind and body connection is through the roof and even though my goals are health related, the appearance of my body is the same as when I used to lift heavy, except now my muscles are longer and my body isn’t puffy and bloated (could be diet too.) I also don’t need to go through bulk up phases and then slim down phases because my nutrition choice is a sustainable lifestyle versus being strictly fast-goal oriented.

Currently I do a mix of calisthenics and yoga. I add in sports and active rest time on days where I don’t work out. Don’t be afraid to use multiple workout methods and switch things up. It seems we often get afraid that as soon as we stop working out we’ll deflate. If that’s happening to you, you’re probably not building sustainable muscle.

Focusing totally on body image is a mindset I truly believe Western culture struggles with greatly; we are obsessed with physical results and short-term results. We’ll do anything to be a “hunk,” even if it’s not healthy for us. When you take the ego away and go for what’s a true healthy choice for you –  for mind, spirit, and body – your choices and goals become very different, and your results do too.

Check Your Mindset & Goals

So is calisthenics for you? You answer that question yourself. What appeals to you? What do you want your lifestyle to look like? What do you like doing when you work out? You have to enjoy it! There’s no wrong answer.

If you want to be a body builder, and have that huge body, maybe compete in competitions, or be a power lifter (a couple reps of a ton of weight), then you will need to lift weights simply because you have to stress your body to incredible levels to get those results. You also have to eat in a specific manner to get those results and to be honest, much of the diet advice you get from these types of athletes is not all that healthy for you long-term. But of course you can make healthier diet choices.

If you are looking for a lot of functional strength, solid bone, and ligament health, good cardiovascular fitness, or a toned, muscular looking body, calisthenics will give you all of that as well.

One myth you hear a lot is that you can’t build muscle mass or get good results with calisthenics, but this isn’t true at all. You will gain a lot of strength and size, and be in great shape just as anyone working out at a gym does. There are easy exercises and tough exercises, and many of weight lifters have trouble performing some of them. Your body is your weight, so it’s not like you are not lifting weight, there’s just no added weight. You’d be surprised how hard many of these exercises are and how well they work any other body part, without an increased risk of hurting yourself.


Raw unedited images of Frank Medrano, Adam Raw & Hit Richards. Built through calisthenics only.

This guy pretty much sums it up well and he’s been through a ton of different techniques.  He explains why, in his opinion, he feels bodyweight/calisthenics is best. He does still lift weight as he believes in multiple types of training, but he covers some great points.

Bottom Line

I’m simply trying to lead us to realize that it’s about kicking the ego out of your health and make it about a lifestyle choices and health. You can play in whatever realm you like, there’s no need to judge either, but keep yourself honest and in check with what you are doing and why. You have options. Choose what’s fun and engaging for you!

Get inspiring tips and information about how I achieved this exercise and to get out of the gym and into nature! There will be a free 7 Day Challenge soon as well! CLICK HERE

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

Continue Reading


9 Unconventional Health Hacks Used By Extreme Sports Athletes




Extreme sports athletes have wowed the world by pushing the limits of the human body. These athletes have to deal with much higher injury rates and the mental strain of extremely dangerous stunts.

The top athletes in Skateboarding, Motocross, Snowboarding, and other extreme sports are now finally being paid as much as pro golfers, Olympians, and other more mainstream athletes.

With these high salaries, many athletes are seeing a promising future in what could only be a hobby in years past.

Serious training is now put into place for extreme athletes who have the dream of going pro in their sport. Here are 10 training lessons we can all learn from extreme sports athletes.

1. Training your mind to stay cool under pressure

During extreme sports competitions, athletes will have to deal with the danger of their stunts as well as the added pressure from competing.

It is important to train your mind to stay cool under this pressure if you are working toward a career as an extreme athlete. Try looking online for brain exercises that will help you relax under pressure.

Learning to meditate can also be a great way to learn to stay cool under any amount of pressure, and has helped all sorts of athletes from golfers to NBA players.

2. Prepare yourself for injuries

As an extreme athlete, you are bound to experience more frequent injuries that will keep you out of your sport for a long period.

Recovering from injuries is almost as much of a part of becoming a world class extreme athlete as mastering your sport.

In most major cities, there are physical therapists who have had experience working with extreme athletes.

These professionals will be able to help you learn the best ways to recover from your injuries quickly and effectively.

3. Create an intense and effective training schedule

Professional athletes don’t get to the top of their sport by accident. It takes a schedule and power of mind that many individuals simply don’t possess or know how to develop.

Waking up early is a key for athletes that want to go pro in their extreme sport. Long gone are the days of the lazy idea of skateboarders who just party and skate when they feel like it.

With the money there for the taking, extreme athletes like Nyjah Huston now have schedules and regimens that will keep them at the top of their sport.

Huston is very strict about his diet. He and other extreme athletes are now taking their training much more seriously. This helps them avoid injuries, perform at a higher level during competitions, and land tricks more often than if they were unorganized in their lives.

4. Always train with athletes who will push your limits

If you are always training with skaters, bikers, and skiers who aren’t as good as you at your sport, it is going to be difficult to get better.

You need to challenge yourself by finding athletes that are better than you at your sport. This may be hard to do if you are the best in your local area.

However, it is worth travelling to a different area where there are better extreme athletes than yourself. If you are going to be competing against the best in the world, you need to be training with the best in the world.

5. Get into the right frame of mind

Just like golf, extreme sports are a very mental thing to do. Going into a competition when you aren’t feeling mentally fit can be disastrous.

Confidence is key when trying dangerous stunts. You can’t be afraid when flying down a mountain or launching off huge ramps.

Take some time to clear your mind and get into a mindset that will help you ace all of your runs.

6. Hop in a chilling ice bath

Travis Pastrana is well known for attributing his low recovery times to regularly soaking in an ice bath. This cold therapy helps to soothe sore muscles and improve recovery times.

Head to the grocery store and buy a big bag of ice. Once you get home, throw the bag of ice in your bathtub and fill it up with cold water.

This will give you a chilling yet invigorating soak that will help you recover quickly from sore muscles or injuries.

7. Use a GoPro Camera

GoPro cameras are one of the best advancements in extreme sports training technology that athletes have regular access to.

With the inexpensive price of these cameras, it is easy to pick one up and start analyzing your runs, tricks, and other performance.

Filming yourself can be a great way to identify bad habits and fix them before they set you back years in your progress.

8. Engage in activities that strengthen your mind and will

Hiking mountains, writing a short story, and remodelling a home are all examples of activities that will strengthen your mind and will.

Learning how to push through hardships to accomplish a goal will help you to be an amazing athlete. Also, activities like chess, crossword, and sudoku are amazing ways to keep your mind strong.

9. Learn everything you can about your equipment

When you are constantly slamming your equipment trying big tricks, you need to learn how to repair it yourself.

Also, learning about the different accessories you can use on your equipment will help you have an edge over the competition.

For example, having the best wheels on your longboard will help you grip the road during your downhill races.

There are many resources online that will help you learn everything you need to know about all of your extreme sports equipment.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

Continue Reading
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