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5 Legitimate Reasons to Not Work Out

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5 Legitimate Reasons to Not Work Out
Young woman pulling rope at gym

Feeling guilty for kicking back on the couch and missing your gym session? While something like a mild cold shouldn’t stop you from working out (and neither should plain laziness), there are some legitimate reasons to not go for that run or to skip sweating it out in a cycling class. We’ve listed five real reasons you shouldn’t feel guilty for skipping your workouts. And, no, “my dog ate my workout plan” isn’t one of them.

1. You’re Injured.
Low-back sport injury and pain

1 YOU’RE INJURED.

If you’re injured, you need time to heal. You can’t just pedal your way through a torn ligament or lace up your sneakers and run off your twisted ankle. In fact, putting more strain on an injury could cause even more serious injury. If you get restless while recuperating, ask your doctor or physical therapist for some modified exercises or moves you can do without using the part of your body that's injured.

2. You’re Obsessed With Exercising.
Women exercising in aerobics class

2 YOU’RE OBSESSED WITH EXERCISING.

There is a big difference between regular physical exercise and compulsively working out. While there are no set guidelines for what constitutes “exercise addiction", becoming irritable, anxious or depressed when you can’t exercise could be warning signs. Those feelings of euphoria after working up a sweat can be addictive, as can seeing significant weight-loss achievements, but working out shouldn’t be to the detriment of your everyday life.

3. You’ve Just Had a Baby.
The heart inside

3 YOU’VE JUST HAD A BABY.

You’ve just brought a new life into the world, so give yourself a fitness break. While many moms are eager to shed the baby weight and squeeze back into their pre-baby jeans, just allow yourself some time. Most doctors recommend no exercise for at least six weeks after a vaginal birth and eight to 12 weeks after a C-section — although check with your doctor to be sure what's best for you.

“If new moms do too much too soon they could end up with injuries, particularly to pelvic floor (prolapse), abdominals and back,” says Melissa Lorch, the sports scientist and personal trainer behind Fit4Mum. But that doesn’t mean you should avoid activity all together. Walking and standing are encouraged in most cases, Lorch says.

4. You Have a Fever.
cup of hot coffee warming in the hands of girl

4 YOU HAVE A FEVER.

If you have a fever, back away from the treadmill. It’s your body’s way of fighting an infection. Working up a sweat can raise the your internal body temperature causing you to overheat. Your body fluids can decrease when you have a fever due to the sweating, so there’s the added danger of dehydration. Pull the covers back up and give yourself time to recover. Once your body temperature drops back to normal you’ll hopefully be fighting fit again.

5. You’re Exhausted.
Man in a hammock on summer day

5 YOU’RE EXHAUSTED.

The alarm goes off at 5:30 a.m. and you haul yourself out of bed and head straight to the gym. That’s OK, as long as you weren’t up burning the midnight oil too, in which case you may want to consider pressing snooze. “Long-term sleep deprivation puts you at risk of serious medical conditions, including obesity, heart disease and diabetes,” explains personal trainer Melissa Lorch. “It’s also been shown to decrease life expectancy.”

“Adults need approximately eight hours a night to function properly. A good way to tell if you’re getting enough sleep is if you wake up tired and spend the day feeling like you want a lie down.” So cutting back on your shut-eye to make way for the gym can actually be detrimental to your health.

What Do YOU Think?
Man leading group of people in boot camp exercises, rear view

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Do you ever feel guilty for missing a workout? Have you tried to power through an ailment and ended up seriously injured? Let us know what you think!

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