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How do you exercise on a "bad" day?

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Old 03-26-2009, 01:33 PM   #1
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Default How do you exercise on a "bad" day?

How do you work up the energy to exercise on days when all you want to do is lay in bed and cry and just the thought of getting up and putting on a happy face turns your stomach?

I know I'm a new face, but I struggle with depression on and off, and this is one of my bad days. I've been crying so much (over little things) that it feels like there's an elephant sitting on me and I just don't have the energy to get up and do the exercise I had planned for today.

It's not that anything terrible has happened today, in fact my scale was actually lower today than it's ever been, but I guess that's the curse of depression--not being able to find pleasure in things that would normally make you happy. I just know that if I DO give in and skip working out, I'll feel even worse tomorrow.
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Old 03-26-2009, 02:04 PM   #2
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What works for me is to NOT think about it. Just get up, lace up your shoes, and walk out the door. Just start walking, biking or whatever it is you want to do. You don't need motivation. If you wait until you feel motivated to exercise, you won't. You just have to get up and do it. Even if it's just a 30 minute walk at a slow pace, it's better than laying in bed. Get out of your head and just do it. There's no other way around the issue.

Good luck to you! And have an awesome workout!!!
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Old 03-26-2009, 02:09 PM   #3
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I remind myself of how much better I'll feel and that each time I exercise I get stronger and closer to my goals.

to you.... I have also dealt with depression and it's rough.

Genesis made a great point, if you wait for the motivation to work out, you won't do it. That is true of many things besides exercise. (Cleaning my house comes to mind.)
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Old 03-26-2009, 02:44 PM   #4
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I put on a hoodie, cover my head up with it, put my headphones and take it out on the basketball court or treadmill....
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Old 03-27-2009, 12:34 AM   #5
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Thanks guys. I did exercise for no other reason than I didn't want to give myself one MORE reason to feel bad later or tomorrow. I can't say I felt better afterward, but like I said, I can't kick myself tomorrow for skipping out on the gym.
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Old 03-27-2009, 02:41 AM   #6
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*hug* if ok
For me it varies a lot, I've been suffering of depression for the last 16 years and exercize did depend a lot. I can say for the first 15 years I didn't do anything, just sat down and cried and sure didn't go out for exercizing. The last year I did, I know if I exercize I'll feel better the day after becaouse of the endorphins and all those things running through my body, thing is sometimes I'm just too low to go to the gym, maybe see people watching me because I've not a nice body...and would perfer to crawl in bed and wait for the end of times. Then I don't go, though if I can I do some weights at home, nothing great, maybe just 10 mins, but I have those done.
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Old 03-27-2009, 08:54 AM   #7
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brooksrm- What is the whether there! The depression is something awful , i was like you. the best that you can make it, is to call of your friends , and go out. This is the recipe.

Go girl , and all the best!
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Old 03-28-2009, 10:54 PM   #8
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I've determined that exercise is my drug of choice. It works better for me than any of the antidepressants I've tried, so I've learned to view it like taking my meds. It's really not optional for me now. That being said, in that dark place it's really, really hard (I like the elephant analogy- I can identify with it) to get up and exercise. My therapist really helped me see this fall how vital regular exercise was to me, and yet I quit doing it around November. I had to go back and rethink my winter exercise choices- for me that meant joining a different gym with group classes so I can be around people at a specific time. This does three things: gets me out of the house at least once that day, gets me around people, and insures I get that exercise. Now I can at least tell myself "Would you just not take a medication today? Nope. Then you need to get to the gym."
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Old 03-29-2009, 02:24 AM   #9
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Julie, good point. It is kind of like medication, but for me it's more like keeping me from being upset about one more thing. I've exercised every day (often twice a day) for 3 months now and I still don't feel endorphins when I exercise, but if I suck it up and work out, I can't be mad at myself tomorrow for being lazy yesterday. And knowing that is a lot of motivation for me, even though I'm sometimes not happy about moving my butt.
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Old 03-31-2009, 12:37 AM   #10
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you are happy about accomplishing something and that is great! i read somewhere that the best help for depression is to do the things that you do when you are not depressed. if exercise is something that you do when you do not feel depressed then it is AMAZING that you get up and just do it when you are depressed. if you do it just to not have something to beat yourself up over i question whether the exercise is a good hobby for you at all. maybe a group sport and then it won't feel like exercise but it will probably be a better workout. just my late nite trying to avoid the fridge blathering
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Old 04-03-2009, 03:11 AM   #11
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I do not excercise on when I have a bad day. I get up, try to make myself presentable, and go to the mall. I don't take the car, I walk there, browse around for an hour or so, and walk home again. At the end of all this, I feel better and also had some excercise
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Old 04-03-2009, 06:05 AM   #12
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For me, almost anything goes better with music. I walk faster, I exercise longer ...

But as for starting ... when I was at my lowest, I always had something I had to go and do. I made sure of it. Even if it was only going to get the mail. One small task completed often gave me the oomph to get at some other stuff.
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Old 04-03-2009, 07:14 AM   #13
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<hugs to you> sorry I'm a few days late on your original post. I don't know if I've ever felt or been aware of the endorphins but I sure don't beat myself up as much if I do accomplish some exercise.

If I'm laying there, and feel that I could easily lay there all day, sometimes it works to say, just get up and do 1 thing. Take care of the dishes, or vacuum, whatever. After doing that one thing, see how I feel. Lots of times I'm able to continue staying up.
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Old 04-06-2009, 04:24 PM   #14
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Wow, lots of great ideas here, I love the idea of looking at it like medication. It especially appeals to me because I'm on the fence about going back on meds after 6 years managing passably without them. I'd prefer to keep things holistic if I can, though I know it may not be an option forever. So telling myself "It's this or prozac!" could be the push I need! (No offense intended to anyone who needs meds, I'm in no way against them morally or anything like that, it's just a personal preference after spending my teen years on various meds.)

There are a couple ways I help push myself to exercise when I'm too down. First, I make it fun. I bought a Gazelle Edge - a reasonably cheap, reasonably small piece of exercise equipment. It's basically an elliptical, though I think technically it's not a "true" elliptical. Anyhow, it's more fun than a treadmill, to me. Not loads of fun, but slightly reminiscent of swinging on a swingset as a kid. Because I exercise at home, I don't have to worry what people think of how I look, so I just throw on some sweats or whatever looks comfy. Also, I always watch the most indulgent, silly, nostalgic TV shows I can think of audio-visual junk food/comfort food, which for me is usually the cartoons I watched when I was little - or cartoons I would have watched as a kid if they'd been on. I love The Fairly Oddparents!

I also like to make bargains with myself. When my inner voice of depression says "I don't wanna" I tell it "You'll feel better if you at least try. How about just doing half the usual time?" Sometimes "we" have to barter quite a bit, and my depressive voice will only agree to do five minutes. But fairly often, like 4 outta 5 times, I end up thinking "Oh ok, this isn't so bad" (especially with the "make it fun" stuff above) and end up doing the whole thing. And when I don't, it's ok, because I beat myself up a lot less the next day knowing I at least tried.
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Old 04-16-2009, 09:42 PM   #15
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I look at it as if I don't have a choice in the matter, and then go. Once I'm at the gym those thoughts are long gone.
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