Kerryn Boogaard Kerryn Boogaard
Beverly Goldsmith Beverly Goldsmith
Zoe Bingley-Pullin Zoe Bingley-Pullin

Too tired to exercise?:

Find ways to fight that feeling of fatigue, rather than skip exercise.
By Beth Hart
Date: August 23 2013
Tags: exercise, fitness,
Editor Rating:

Do you cut short your time on a run or a walk, or at the gym or yoga, because you’re feeling tired? Or do you not go at all?

Sometimes this sense of tiredness can be about perceptions more than anything so it’s important to make exercise seem easier so you get more enjoyment out of it. The act of exercising can also make you feel less fatigued and more energise. Here are some fatigue-fighting tips that might help.

1.  Eat carbohydrates

Low-carb diets are popular, but they aren’t ideal for exercise as Kerryn Boogaard set out in her recent article here. Having insufficient carbohydrates in your system keeps your body from getting the maximum benefit from strength-based activities. Low-carb eaters can also experience increased levels of fatigue from exercise. If you plan to work out and it has been more than three hours since you last ate, fuel up. A banana is a good choice, but make sure you stay away from refined, simple carbohydrates such as white bread.

2.  Drink more water

When you’re dehydrated, your cardiovascular system feels the effects, weakening the flow of blood to your muscles and decreasing your energy. Replenish your fluids before, during and after exercise, and increase the amount if you sweat heavily or the air temperature is high.

3.  Keep a diary

Tracking your activity and success will help motivate you, just as a calorie log helps when you’re dieting. Consider recording such things as your waist circumference, the total amount of time you exercise, the distance covered during cardiovascular training and the number of reps, sets and kilos lifted during strength training. There are so many good Apps that help to keep track of this, so take a look around the App store for a free one.

4.  Find a partner

Pairing up can push you to do more than you would alone and make you more accountable – especially if they’re in better shape than you! A 2010 study in the Journal of Social Sciences found that when men and women cycled with another cyclist who was more highly trained, they exercised harder even when instructed to keep a moderate pace. If a person trained with a cyclist below his or her fitness level, performance declined. If you don’t have a buddy available, try using some of the newer exercise machines that offer virtual training partners and other interactive features.

5.  Listen to music

Music makes exercise more fun and, like a training partner, it can distract you and reduce your perception of effort. But it also stimulates people’s innate tendency to move in time with sound! To encourage yourself to work out longer, choose songs you really enjoy – make a special playlist. If you go to a gym, and don’t like the music, make sure you tell them. If they’re focussed on their clients, they will do what they can to get better music for you.

6.  Exercise in the afternoon

I’m an advocate of morning exercise for most people, but if your joints have trouble waking up, you might find it better to exercise later in the day when you’re warmed-up. But try not to train within 2-3 hours of bedtime. Body temperature rises during exercise and can take several hours to drop, which can sleep – and make you feel tired! By the way, exercise at any time of day is better than no exercise!

7.  Mind your breathing

For weight training, exhale during the resistance (‘lifting’) phase of the exercise and inhale as you return to the starting position. Never hold your breath. For cardiovascular training, try to breathe from your belly or chest, and not while lifting your shoulders.

8.  Mix it up

Repetitive training can cause boredom and fatigue. If you are a member of a fitness club, use a different cardio machine on every visit, and change your weightlifting program every four weeks to work different muscle groups. If needed, consult a personal trainer.

Share This Tweet This Email To Friend
Related Articles
Winter isn't a time to hibernate & hang up the…
Read more
Get the most out of time at a swimming pool,…
Read more
If you haven't been near a gym in a long…
Read more
Personal training is one of the biggest growth industries. Mummy…
Read more
Cry babies

Dry your eyes!
The newest additions are on their way from the Babies who cry real tears!


Latest Tech Used In Shipping Containers
Read how the shipping industry has revolutionised

Motherpedia cover-2

Win 1 set of a 4-book hardcover illustrated boxed set
Barbara Murray’s new 4-book Sound Stories is perfect for parents and educators and could assist with NAPLAN results

Motherpedia cover (4)

Where to celebrate Oktoberfest Australia
Get ready for this celebration!

Motherpedia cover-4

A Fortnight of Foodie Experiences at East Village
A taste of East Village. What's in it for me?

Globber my too fix up cover

We Try: Globber My TOO Fix Up
A scooter that grows with your child

Throw a winning cricket pitch

3 Steps to a Winning Backyard Cricket Pitch
Ex-Adelaide Oval legend curator Les Burdett shares his tips for getting your backyard cricket pitch test match ready this summer

A bike that follows your kids life cycle - motherpedia - cover

A Bike That Follows Your Kids Life Cycle
Check out the Bunzi 2-in-1 gradual balance bike!

Moonlight lifestyle

Moonlight Cinema to bring…
Moonlight Cinema announces brand new Western Sydney venue

Screen shot 2019-11-26 at 8.29.12 am

Your Magical Christmas Wonderland…
Adventure park is about to light up the night sky with its "Christmas Festival of Lights"

Screen shot 2019-11-21 at 11.11.36 am

The Preston Market Gets…
It's time to feel pumped up for the holiday season!


Bunnings team members get…
Help raise funds by buying a snag or donating at your local store.