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Lacking motivation to exercise due to fear?

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Old 12-19-2008, 11:15 PM   #1
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Default Lacking motivation to exercise due to fear?

Ok so right now I'm currently taking baby steps on my weightloss journey. I started off with removing a lot of the process garbage from my diet and limiting what I do have of it on occassion. I'm also working on behavior modifications such as not eating out of boredom, or because I'm emotional, etc. Now it would seem the next logical step would be to start working out, except I have no motivation to start, at least emotionally. I know in my head that it will make me feel a whole lot better and that it will speed my weight loss, but I just keep putting it off and saying "Oh, I'll just start (insert timeframe here)." Basically, I think I'm letting myself be held back by my fears that are associated with weight loss because I know as soon as I start working out the weight is going to start coming off faster and I'll be confronted with those fears more openly and on more of a regular basis and I'm not sure if I can deal with that, so perhaps that's why I'm lacking the motivation to exercise to due to fear? Is that possible? And if that is the case, what is the best course of action to confront these fears? Anybody else ever have this problem? I know it may seem like I'm kind of ranting and asking all these questions but this is definitely something that has been bugging me the past few days because I've been sick and I was wondering if I was manifesting my fears as sickness so then I won't have to exercise. I know I'm a mess. Please help!
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Old 12-19-2008, 11:32 PM   #2
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I did that for a while, too. What helped me was to think of a physical goal I wanted to reach (running at 5 mph for half an hour) and gradually building up to the point where I could do it. But you don't have to do more than you can, or more than is comfortable for you. Intersperse walking and running, if you like. It makes it easier. This applies to things other than running, too, though. It helps to be excited about the exercise itself, or some aspect (maybe some really good music to listen to?).
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Old 12-20-2008, 01:46 AM   #3
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Most of the times we procrastinate when we don't believe we can be successful in achieving something..we do it when we have set out very big goals and believe we won't achieve them.

Just walk for 5 minutes for next 7 days and see if this discipline makes you feel good...once this becomes comfortable do it for 10 minutes..and you'll see the emotional garbage getting cleared off...exercising is hard..and so is brushing teeth in the morning..or doing laundry or dusting your house..but we do it coz we don't ever think we'll fail...start with 5 minutes and you'll have all motivations......making love to the one you love is again an exercise..it requires physical activity and is somewhat aerobic in nature..so why don't people put it off ..we do it because we associate it with pleasure

Associate your daily exercises with pleasure..do what you enjoy doing and I'm sure you'll soon start loving it.
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Old 12-20-2008, 01:47 AM   #4
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I dont understand why you would be afraid to lose weight? It's good that you have taken these positive steps towards being healthier. Doesn't it feel good? Just remind yourself that working out will feel even better, physically and emotionally. You dont need to start out being a marathon runner. Just do a little at a time. Eventually you might even look forward to exercise. I have found myself "wanting" to work out, which surprised the heck out of me. good luck in your journey
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Old 12-20-2008, 04:54 AM   #5
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Honestly, for me, there is a part of me that is afraid to lose weight. My body will start to change, men will notice, I lose a "buffer" of security that comes with being obese, etc.

So I can understand how you can feel afraid. what I'm learning to do is just take it one day at a time. Don't think of it like the rest of your life, just focus on today and the stress is sooooo much less that way!
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Old 12-20-2008, 06:22 AM   #6
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Congratulations on the changes you've made thus far.

You must decide which is more fearful for you - living the life of an obese person - or having to deal with some attention. I know that sounds harsh, but that's really what it all boils down to.

Luckily, we don't become "slim" overnight. We get to learn and adjust to it along the way. I think you may be suprised that you can really handle the attention, that you're stronger then you think and that it's waaaaaay better to have to handle that attention, then to remain obese. To remain not living the best life that is possible for you.

Hey, and if you find it's just too much to take, you can always gain the weight back . Just kidding. Just kidding. Believe me, that WON'T be the case.

There are always going to be fears with something new, the unknown. Don't let that hold you back.

As far as being motivated, forget about that. Fake it til you make it and all that stuff. You really need to make a commitment to exercise and lose the weight. How do you want to spend your life? Wondering and wishing and hoping to be slim - or being slim with all the incredible benefits that comes with it?
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Old 12-20-2008, 07:46 AM   #7
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Well--this is all taking place in your head.

So, you could try a "head game" of not thinking in terms of the dreaded "E" word. Think in terms of "activity," not exercise. Stop putting a big start date on it. "Today I will BEGIN TO EXERCISE." This may be making too big a deal out of it. You're not planning a trip up Everest...

Go outside or to the mall if things are icy, and walk for 30 minutes. 15 minutes up, 15 minutes back. There, you're done. How's that for baby steps?

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Old 12-20-2008, 11:33 AM   #8
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Thanks ladies for all the support and perspectives. I think I should maybe clarify that it's not the unknown for me that is scary because what I'm afraid of is something I've already dealt with. And you know what, I'll just be brave and come right out and say it: I'm afraid do deal with men! As crazy as it sounds but I had gone through a really tough time with an ex and then all the men following him that just threw me for a loop and I couldn't tell you which was up. And all of that happened in conjunction with hormonal changes that became imbalances that cause me to gain huge amounts of weight and it just went to reinforce my feeling of needing a buffer I guess. I have to say I'm very proud of all the other emotional baggage I let go associated with my weight but this seems to be the last thing because I think it's so much more daunting because it always seems to be in your face as a slim and attractive woman. I guess it seems extra scary for me because people always tell me what a pretty face I have and I guess that it would be like OMG what if I have the body to go with it whats going to happen then?

But you guys make excellent points, especially you rockinrobin I have to decide which is scarier and it's definitely living my life overweight and getting sick young (I'm only 23 and already have insulin resistance due to PCOS) and missing out on life. I guess my eyes have opened up to what is really possible in life and I don't want to continue missing out on it. However, I'm having so much trouble working through this fear of men and the attention and all that jazz as it pertains to weightloss. It's probably even harder because it seems to be the last hurdle I have emotionally to get over and then I won't have any blocks to my weightloss and that's terrifying.

As for baby steps and just starting with "activity" I guess you could say I've already done that without actually knowing I did. I guess it's getting myself up to the next level to real exercise that seems daunting. I'll get there though, with the help of all you fabulous ladies. I signed up for one of the challenges in the 20-something forum that has an activity component to it so that maybe the kick in the butt I need and thankfully it doesn't start until after new years so then maybe I'll have my head on my shoulders a little straighter.
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Old 12-20-2008, 11:47 AM   #9
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Overintellectualization is a form of procrastination. Just do it. It really is that simple. And don't let "what ifs" run your life for you. Do what's right for you. Don't give anyone or anything else power over your future.
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Last edited by midwife : 12-20-2008 at 11:47 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 12-20-2008, 10:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by midwife View Post
Overintellectualization is a form of procrastination. Just do it. It really is that simple. And don't let "what ifs" run your life for you. Do what's right for you. Don't give anyone or anything else power over your future.
Wow Midwife, that was very Jillian Michaels-esque of you to say. I'll be honest, when I first read it, it was like a kick in the gut to read those words, but that's what a good butt kicking is like in the beginning. And then I thought on it and you're really right in what you said, and you put your message very succinctly and didn't sugar coat it. So thank you for that. But in some ways its kind of a platitude because I an struggling with this and I'm not sure if just diving into it exercise without dealing with these fears is going to work in the long run. Or do you think if I just stop thinking about it and move on with exercising, etc, that'll these fears will dissipate due to the exercise and that'll be my way of working through it? I'm also just afraid that if I don't deal with this problem like I did my fears that I'll end up regaining the weight like I did other times in my life especially since I've learned you have to deal with a lot of the emotional stuff to really have lasting effects. But I do appreciate your perspective and will definitely take into consideration more of your advice as it comes!
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"You can tell me that you CHOOSE to quit. That you CHOOSE to be LESS than what you ARE and LESS than what GOD INTENDED, but DON'T EVER TELL ME that you CAN'T do it."
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Old 12-20-2008, 10:26 PM   #11
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Oh, gosh, gym, I didn't mean to cause you distress. I probably should have said that overintellectualization CAN be a form of procrastination. It certainly has been for me in many areas of my life.

I ponder, worry, plan, contemplate, analyze, list, journal, prioritize, and so forth until I am blue in the face....and all of those processes rarely equal results. I'm certain that planning and contemplating can be important (pre-contemplation is the first step of change after all), but I know that for me, and I sense for others on 3FC as well, all of the knowing and considering and worrying can actually be a barrier to action.

I changed my user avatar statement to read "Persist. Believe." earlier this week cause I have been considering this theme in my own life. Action = results, and sometimes the persistence (and the "one foot in front of the other") really does take priority over the mental considerations. So for me, Persist first, belief after. It's a little backwards from the usual theme of "visualize success, and then success will follow." The hard work is coming first for me these days.

Do we get bogged down in worry, analysis, solving the "whys" of our obesity battle? At the heart of obesity is biology, and our actions affect our health....Not to underestimate the importance of having our heads in the right place, but I wonder if we elevate the importance of the mental game a bit too much....

All of this to say, my goal was not to give you a platitude, and I'm not sure who Jillian Michaels is. Again, I didn't mean to cause you distress, and I apologize. I'm sure my post has a lot more to do with where I am at on the journey and I did mean it to be helpful. I wish you the best as you sort this out.
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Last edited by midwife : 12-20-2008 at 10:30 PM. Reason: typo & added stuff
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Old 12-20-2008, 10:38 PM   #12
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Aw don't worry Midwife. I didn't mean to sound like it distressed me at all. It was more kind of a wake up call and the way you put what you said you didn't sugar coat it like I said and I think a lot of people on here walk on eggshells so to speak when they say something out of fear of offending someone. I am not so easily offended so it doesn't bother me, but I was taken a little aback because I haven't seen anybody put things so bluntly on here before. But like I said I do appreciate that quality immensely. And I do see where you're coming from and I understand now why you said what you said and it makes perfectly good logic.

And Jillian Michaels is the trainer from the biggest loser. If you google her you'll find all kinds of info on her. She's amazing and my idol. So it was a compliment when I said what you said was very Jillian Michaels-esque haha
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"You can tell me that you CHOOSE to quit. That you CHOOSE to be LESS than what you ARE and LESS than what GOD INTENDED, but DON'T EVER TELL ME that you CAN'T do it."
Jillian Michaels
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Old 12-21-2008, 01:59 AM   #13
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The first step is always the hardest. After that first exercise session, you will feel stronger mentally and emotionally. Exercise is exactly what you need to help you through all of this whatever it may be...overintellectuallization or fear. Exercise is a powerful antidepressant and anti-anxiety reliever.

And I understand where you are coming from. I think I actually gained 20 pounds back just because a guy was too impressed by my weightloss. It was a painful slap in the face that my physical appearance got me more attention than my mind or personaility. Sounds kind of crazy now that I write it, but true.

Anyway, you need to do what is good for you. Take your power back and be the best you can be for you.
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Old 12-21-2008, 02:53 AM   #14
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One thing I'm learning as I get older is to not let fear keep me from living my life. It's no way to live. I think you'll learn to deal with this as you lose weight, like others have said, it doesn't come off fast. You'll have time to adjust. Trust yourself that you are strong enough to handle it.
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Old 12-21-2008, 07:06 AM   #15
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Hey gymlee, are you exercising yet, or are you still thinking about it?

I like the saying SusanB has in her signature line:

"You can stick with that story all the way to 300 lbs if it means that much to you."

You will never know whether your fears will go away or not unless you start. Until then it's all speculation. At the end of the day you can have made progress or you can be right where you started at the beginning--or worse. It's up to you. Your body is quite happy to let you sit in a chair and think about it. The fat doesn't care.

Jay
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