Solve My Problem: I Can’t Make Myself Exercise!
ADDitude readers solve this perennial problem by offering genius workout workarounds and fun ways to start exercising that will get you moving.
ADHD brains benefit from exercise — but they also struggle with follow-through and lack of motivation. Which is why, for most of us, having the best intentions to exercise doesn’t always translate into actually breaking a sweat.
We asked ADDitude’s innovative readers what tricks they have up their sleeve to avoid the powerful pull of the couch and embrace exercise. Here’s what they said:
“I purchased a treadmill and put it in front of the TV. If I want to watch TV, I have to walk on the treadmill for at least 15 minutes.”
“I signed up for a workout class with a friend.”
“Finding someone local to go on a walk with can be a game changer, especially if you explain that you need support getting out of the house). Having the other person to help me “task initiate” is brilliant.”
[Read:Take It Outside! How to Treat ADHD with Exercise]
“When I put a load of laundry in, I do a yoga or walking video until the washing machine buzzer goes off. I get in exercise and feel productive.”
“I just got a VR (virtual reality) headset and am super into one of the fitness games in it. I don’t even realize I’m working out.”
“I tricked myself into liking the gym by getting a “black card” which gets me access to a hydro massage chair! I work out, I get a massage.”
“My creative solution: accountability and competition. I don’t want to exercise, but I do want to keep my promise to play tennis with my friend (and I also want to destroy him).”
[Watch: “How to Leverage Sports Psychology to Benefit ADHD Brains”]
“Committing to just the warm-up portion of a video exercise helps. I usually feel like doing the rest once I’ve warmed up.”
“I have finally, after years of wanting to, got into doing yoga regularly —every single weekday morning. I’ve identified the barriers, and tried to address them. Number one is: I have to work out straight away, as if I do anything else, my meds kick in and I’ll get focused on it too much.”
“Sign up for an intramural sports team. That way, you have people counting on you to show up to practice and for games.”
Workout Motivation with ADHD: Next Steps
- Read: 6 ADD-Friendly Tips for Starting and Maintaining an Exercise Program
- Download: Free Guide to Health & Fitness — Lifestyle Changes for Adults with ADHD
- Read: Exercise and the ADHD Brain -— The Neuroscience of Movement
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