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Ron Durham Fitness
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Can’t – or Won’t?

Several years ago I was introduced to a very interesting phrase. A gentleman told me, “Can’t Means Won’t.”

In a nutshell it means this: When someone says they “can’t” do something, what they usually mean is they “won’t” do it.

At the time I thought “Can’t Means Won’t” was just another cute phrase, but then I began to notice that the saying had some merit. The vast majority of the time, when someone says they can’t do something, it really means they just won’t do it. In reality, there are very few things we cannot do if we really want to, but a lot of things we will not do.

I have found this particularly true when it comes to starting an exercise program and/or changing poor eating habits. One of the most popular excuses for not working out is “I can’t find the time to exercise.” Similarly, when you talk to someone about modifying their diet, the usual response is “I just can’t do that.”

In this case, Can’t Means Won’t!

There are very few people who, with some discipline and desire, cannot find 30 minutes to an hour to exercise each day. To squeeze in a quick walk around the block if nothing else. It’s simply a matter of wanting to find the time.

Interestingly, the same folks who claim they do not have time to exercise will sit in front of the television for hours watching soap operas or football. They go to the movies and make time for their other hobbies, whatever they might be. Nothing wrong with any of that, but the point is people make time for the things they really want to do. It’s not that they can’t find the time to exercise, it’s just that they won’t.

Besides, we all do things every day that aren’t necessarily fun. Mundane things like showering, shaving, brushing our teeth, etc. They may not be fun, but they are necessary. So is regular exercise.

Several recent studies have shown that even moderate exercise can produce dramatic results in overall health and vitality. If walking 30 minutes each day doesn’t sound like much fun, gather up a group of friends or work buddies and do it together. You will find that in a very short period of time you will start to feel better, breathe better and be more energetic. And believe me, there is nothing more relaxing than a brisk walk outside on a beautiful day. It gives you a chance to unwind, clear your head and be alone with your thoughts. It might turn out to be the only quiet time you get all day.

Soon you will find yourself looking forward to those daily walking sessions. You might even want to increase your daily session to 45 minutes or even an hour. The more you do, the better you will feel. And the better you feel, the more you will want to do.

A light weight training regimen works the same way. If you’re skeptical, start out very moderately. Do a few basic exercises with light weights. Chances are, when you begin to see the changes in your body and the improvement in the way you feel, you will want to do more.

Let me challenge you to make an exerted effort to exercise today, even if it’s only for a few minutes. Don’t say you can’t – Can’t Means Won’t.

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