The 2 most surprising reasons not to exercise

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For every good reason there is to exercise, there are roughly eleven excuses not to.

In winter, it’s too cold and dark; in summer, it’s too bloody hot. You have a hangover. You’ve already eaten a cronut today, so you might as well restart your healthy regimen tomorrow. You have your period, and oh dear, is that the beginning of a headache prickling your temple? Better rest up just to be careful. Also, you really deserve the extra hour of sleep this morning.

However, a new study has found some women have a more permanent (and legitimate) barrier to exercise – actually, make that two barriers.

English researchers surveyed 239 women about what discouraged them from taking part in physical activity. For almost one fifth of the respondents, the main deterrent was their breasts – more specifically, not having the right sports bra and feeling embarrassed by the movements of their breasts during workouts.

Anyone who has struggled to find the right sports bra (really, who hasn’t?), or experienced “The Bounce” while out running can probably understand their reasoning.

These factors ranked higher than the cost of exercise, not having a friend to work out with and not having access to facilities. Meanwhile, the deterrents that ranked higher than breast issues were time constraints, a lack of energy and health reasons.

Interestingly, women who were savvier about their breast health were more likely to exercise and wear a sports bra, leading the study authors to conclude that improving breast health awareness might encourage women to participate in physical activity.

They also advise sports bra manufacturers to understand that many women struggle to find the fit and support their breasts need.

Having had plenty of unpleasant fitting room experiences ourselves, we know that support isn’t just physical, either.

Have you found a sports bra that suits your needs? Please tell us about it.