The Best Workouts for People Who Hate Working Out

exercise for people who hate exercise

Exercising is one of the hardest things adults can do on a regular basis, but finding workouts for people who hate working out may be easier than expected. Training is one of the most important elements in life, and many health authorities recommend exercising as a way to boost overall wellness, fitness levels, and mental health.


However, when it comes to working out, adults need to aim for about 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity including 2 to 3 days of weight training. The CDC suggests that nearly half of adults do not meet aerobic exercise guidelines and even less meet resistance and aerobic guidelines, suggesting exercise is one of the hardest things for adults to do on a regular basis.

With that in mind, how do adults get enough exercise in order to gain the benefits needed to stay healthy, fit, and overall wellness? Listed below are some ideas for workouts for people who hate working out, along with some tips and tricks to help make the experience more enjoyable.

Finding Workouts for People Who Hate Working Out?

WalkingWorkouts for People Who Hate Working Out 2

Perhaps one of the easiest things that adults can do is something we already do on a regular basis. It’s something that you can do every single day, it won’t wear you out, and it can be quite enjoyable if you add in the right elements.

For people who hate working out, walking is something that might be a way to increase your heart rate without adding in the dread factor. Studies have shown that walking for pure pleasure can be a way to boost cardiovascular fitness among adults, suggesting that walking is a suitable exercise for some people.

Walking tip: In order to get the benefits of walking aim to get about 30 minutes of a moderate pace which means something that you can continue with without losing your breath.

Consider adding your favorite music playlist or even creating one to make the walk a little bit more enjoyable. If this doesn’t work for you, consider bringing a walking buddy or someone who can make the experience fun.


A similar type of workout to walking, hiking is a very enjoyable experience for many people, mainly because it involves being outdoors and seeing the environment in the way that it’s intended.

Being outdoors and exercising can do wonders for people who hate working out. Studies have shown that hiking is a great alternative to exercise in a gym, with many reporting that hiking feels nothing like the exercise you would get in the gym.

Hiking tip: Essentially no matter where you live, hiking is something that anyone can do anywhere and there are various difficulties to choose from depending on your skill and desire. If you live near a mountain, forest, ocean, or anywhere that has beautiful scenery and great whether you are in luck.

High Intensity Interval Training

Interval training, or HIIT, involves short bursts of high intensity exercise with small amounts of rest and tends to be quite enjoyable for people who simply do not enjoy traditional exercise.

There are almost endless forms of HIIT workouts to try with some popular ones involving cardio and strength. Starting off with something your body can handle is essential and working your way to more strenuous HIIT workouts can pay off in the long run.

Studies show that HIIT exercise can burn more calories than traditional workouts, which can be more motivating and enjoyable.

HIIT basics: Consider starting your HIIT format easy, such as small trios of workouts that include a jumping activity, followed by an upper body lift, and lower body activity. Do this without any rest and aim for lower reps with three sets to start.

Olympic Weight Training

Exercising does not always have to mean doing cardio activities and while it is important to get the heart elevated during a workout, sometimes a change in routine can make a big difference.

Weight training is recommended as a general guideline two to three times a week, however, a basic routine can become bland. Changing the routine to Olympic lifting, or Olympic weightlifting involves utilizing heavy weights and Olympic lifts (often squats, bench press, deadlift).

Olympic Lifting Tip: This type of exercise is challenging and Olympic lifts can really work the body without it feeling like you’re trying hard. One of the most important elements with exercise and especially for weight loss is establishing muscle tone and with Olympic lifts, almost the entire body is worked in some way, which is good for your metabolism.

Consider hiring a personal trainer and establishing the goal to learn this type of lifting and wait for the rewards to come through.

Jump Rope

If you are like many adults who do not enjoy long durations of cardio exercise, consider jump roping for your endurance activity. Jumping rope is often thought to be something you do when you’re a child, but it is actually a good form of cardiovascular exercise because of how easily it can boost your heart rate.

Consider starting with about five minutes and progress and add in fun, upbeat music with a fast tempo to add in more enjoyment.

Jump Rope Tip: jumping rope for a cardio activity should last about five to ten minutes until endurance is built up. Consider adding jump ropes to your HIIT programming to add more agility to your program.

Exercise Classes

If motivation is the only thing holding you back from enjoying your workout, then consider an exercise class. There are endless types of classes to enjoy including cardio, strength, yoga, Zumba, circuit, boxing, Pilates, and even HIIT classes.

Boxing and Pilates are two forms of exercise classes that are becoming very popular because of how fun they are and the number of calories they help you burn.

Fitness class tip: try a new class every day, even if you are not sure if you will like the class or not. Not only might this open your interest to something new, but it is a way to establish a routine without it becoming stale. Try a class at the gym, download fitness apps, or follow your favorite streaming routine.

Finding What Works Best for You

Finding various workouts for people who hate working out can be a challenge for trainers and even for the individual because sometimes it may not be one factor contributing to the feeling.

This is where having alternatives, supplemental exercise, or changing a routine can really help you to achieve your health and wellness goals. Consider the alternatives above and consider cycling activities every couple of weeks to avoid having something become stale.

Photo by Nathan Cowley

The Best Workouts for People Who Hate Working Out