5 Excuses We Make for Failing Before We Even Start – Busted!

Friday 5On Tuesday, I had a heckuva stressful day and when I finally made it to the track I bombed my workout. I didn’t even do one complete interval. Not one! It was off the chain ridiculously bad. I was way stressed out for one thing, but even more importantly, I forgot to eat in the afternoon after a paltry lunch of pbj and an apple. We nursing moms can’t get away with that.

I was so mad because I actually wanted to do the workout. Other times though, I’ve gone into a workout with the excuses for my training log already writing themselves before I even hit the track. The weather is ____. I feel like ____.

And then the workout goes like _____.

This Friday 5 is dedicated to those of us who’ve made excuses for failing a workout before we’ve even started it, because that, my friends, is a wasted opportunity besides wasted time. Unless you really physically can’t, GET IT DONE, people!

1. Sh*t hurts.

“Oh. My ____ hurts. Surely I cannot perform this workout satisfactorily.” 

Something always hurts. It’s training. If you’re training, some body part is being pushed to its limit. Sometimes what hurts gets worked out with some faster running. Unless you’re certain speed work caused the ouchy or will exacerbate the ouchy, try the workout. If it doesn’t hurt while doing the workout then proceed as planned and Get. It. Done.

2. It’s hot or cold or windy or (insert other adjective).

The weather is weathering. Surely this workout cannot be completed as prescribed.

Except for that 10 day window in October and that 2 day window in May, the weather is always some shade of sh*tty for running. Suck it up and do your best. You can’t change the weather so just do the best you can with what you have and quit whining about it.

English: Blizzard
Oh man. In just a few short months I’ll be making this excuse again! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

3. You’re tired.

I didn’t get 8.36 hours of sleep last night. Surely this workout will make me yawn more and therefore I cannot do it.

Most of us are not professional runners and have lives that require us to do other things than run, sleep and eat in a 24 hour period. That means, most of us are often tired. If tiredness was an excuse, 99% of us would never do it. Plus, you know how you manage to not sleep the night before a marathon and wake up at 4:00 a.m. bright-eyed and manage to run well? Exactly. You need less sleep to perform than you think (systemic sleep deprivation is another issue). Quit yawning and just do it.

Tired? Insert toothpicks and hit the road.
Tired? Insert toothpicks and hit the road.

4. Your measurement device is unavailable.

I cannot record my splits to the 1000th of a second. Surely there is no point in performing this workout.

Oh come on! Your watch died. The satellites won’t locate. The track is closed. Wa. Splits are just information. What really counts is the work you put in. If you’ve read my posts long enough you’ll recall the story of how I used my crappy flip phone to time a tempo run when my Garmin wouldn’t power up. Were my splits perfectly recorded in my log? No. Was the work done. Yes. Even better, I now have the story to tell you (and my grandkids) over and over again.

Sun Dial
A flip phone is about as old-school as you’re going to want to go with the timing devices (Photo credit: Khirol Amir)

5. You’re a basket case and think way too hard about doing your workouts.

My brain is on overload and I cannot stop making excuses for failing at this workout I haven’t even started yet. Surely, this workout is going to ____.

Just shut up and run. 

What’s your favorite excuse?

Salty Running boss and mother of 3 little ones with PRs of 3:10:15 (26.2), 1:25:59 (13.1) and 18:15 (5k). I love to write about running culture, mental training, and fitting in a serious running habit with the rest of a busy life.

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  1. Thank you. I’m going running now.

    My excuse: I don’t have quite enough time to get in my workout before ____. A: Do something. Some running is better than nothing.

    1. Yes. If it was a Fri 6 that would be the other excuse! I don’t know about you, but I have never have enough time for anything if I want that to be my excuse. Hope you have a great run!

  2. I am sometimes guilty of the weather excuse. Especially in the winter since I hate being cold at the beginning of my run before I’m warmed up. I’m also a wimp about running when it’s raining, because I hate being wet. Oh boo, I should just suck it up and run 🙂

  3. A comeback favorite: “This day is already shot; I’ll get serious again tomorrow.” Which, in addition to taking out a run, also somehow permits a dinnertime dietary disaster that will give nice lead in to tomorrow’s excuse.