With any practice that involves bettering yourself, there comes a whirlwind of counter-intuitive anxieties that can create stumbling blocks.If you’re new to the gym world, the gym can feel like the most intimidating place on earth.When this is your first time exercising in public, the equipment and crowds of experienced people might completely deter you. But don’t let them!Here’s how you can deal with your gymtimidation.
The place where you work out is as important as the workout itself.Do thorough research into how convenient the gym is, what services and benefits are available, what precautions and hygiene practices are followed if they cater to both genders and what the capacity is like.Don’t be afraid to ask plenty of questions. You can also ask for a trial day to see what the gym is like at your ideal workout time.Usually, gyms will be more than happy to give you a full tour and answer any questions you may have.
A gym membership can be a big commitment, so it's important to know everything about the space you will frequent- and it can help when dealing with gymtimidation.
Usually, you’ll be able to instantly pick up whether a gym suits you and your lifestyle.
For example, if you’re looking for a space that’s more meditative and private for doing yoga, you won’t want a gym that plays loud pumping music and has a large section with noisy lifting equipment.
Once you’ve chosen your desired workout environment, it's time to develop a strategy to ensure you get the most out of your gym experience and get over your gymtimidation.If you’re a beginner, ask one of the trained professionals to help you with your first circuit. This is an order of machinery to use for a designated amount of time, tailored to your fitness goals and level. For example, if you only have 40 minutes a day to work out, one of the staff members will allocate the right amount of time to each piece of equipment.
Time is based on weight resistance training and cardio. If you’re looking to tone, weight resistance machines are the way to go. If you’re looking to burn calories, you’ll spend more time on cardio machines such as the treadmill.
The more consistent you are, the easier your time on the machines will be. Once you feel comfortable levelling up, you’ll have the opportunity to try more intense workout equipment.The great thing about a circuit is that you don’t have to follow a particular order. If the machine you want to use is occupied, you can simply skip it and come back.
This reduces gymtimidation because it helps you look occupied and authoritative, keeping the imposter syndrome or anxiety at bay.
The best way to stay motivated and feel confident while exercising is to go with a gym buddy. You could decide to join the same gym as your friends or convince them to join the gym at the same time as you.This is a fantastic way to ease the stress of keeping yourself motivated, and it makes working out more fun.Once you’ve gone a few times with a buddy, you won’t feel so intimidated going alone because you’ll have familiarised yourself with the space.
It’s also a good idea to make friends with people who are more experienced at the gym. This way, they can “spot” you if you’re trying something new.Always consult the guidance of the professionals on the floor when trying something intense. They are more than happy to help and cheer you on while you reach new goals, and this is also key for safety.
One of the best ways to feel confident in the gym is to invest in good quality workout clothes that make you feel good.New gym clothes don’t have to be expensive and there are plenty of affordable options available. It might feel silly buying clothes that you’re just going to sweat in, but having designated gym clothes is a more hygienic option as they’re designed for workouts- and it will help with gymtimidation.
Some gym clothes are also necessary for protection. For example, it is advised that women wear a decent and comfortable sports bra when working out to avoid unnecessary pain in the chest area.Wearing clothes that are slightly form-fitting is a good idea too, because loose clothes and strings can get caught in the machinery.
It can be very daunting to go somewhere to “work” on your body in front of people who may be more experienced than you. But everyone has to start somewhere!Even professional body builders and experienced gym-goers will get self-conscious from time to time.