This past week I met with quite a few new exercisers. A common theme with three women over 55 years old was their fear of failure. Each woman had not exercised in a long time and had the usual aches, pains, weight gain and hormonal challenges that most women experience at this age.
Each was scared to death of getting started on an exercise program and concerned she would not be able to stick to it.
Fear of failure is one of the top concerns I hear from new exercisers, yet most believe they are the only ones that feel this way. The fact is most people have this fear.
The great thing about exercise is you have hundreds of choices and most of your options can be modified to suit your situation, budget and individual needs. Most people can exercise at home on a very small budget, while others may want to invest in a home gym of some kind. Others may have access to equipment in the building where they live or work. Still others may join a gym or hire a personal trainer.
There is no ultimate exercise that every person on the planet must do. There are definitely some great ones – squats, lunges and dead lifts being at the top of my list for lower body workouts, while push-ups, pull-ups, planks and bird dogs will round a great upper body and core routine. Each can be modified to suit the needs of a beginner or an advanced exerciser.
Regardless of your situation, you are going to need to put yourself out there and make yourself a little uncomfortable. Anytime you start something new there is going to be a degree of awkwardness and fear. Overcoming this is well within your capabilities.
Last week, I helped a 90-year old woman get started. Yes, you read that right. I met with a 90-year-old lady who has not been exercising. Not only did she meet with me, she went through an exercise program. Not only did she come in once, she felt so good after her first session that she came back in for a second session.
This woman, who had not exercised in more than 30 years, walked into a fitness facility that she knew nothing about and asked about getting started.
If fear is holding you back, ask yourself what must have been going through her head as she was on her way to her first exercise session. For the record, she drove herself and walked in and out without any assistance. She is an amazing person and her energetic spirit made my week.
You are capable of whatever you put your mind to, so stop talking yourself out of exercising and get to it.