Ever get that feeling that you really want to improve on your health and fitness, but you’re too embarrassed to work out at the gym? Perhaps you’re afraid of how others may view you, or you fear awkward moments with people who seem way more skilled in the fitness department than you.
When you’re feeling intimidated at the gym (or at the thought of it), it’s only natural to want to walk away and escape the situation altogether. This feeling is shared by many, regardless of fitness level, gender, age, or size. What it really comes down to is your confidence – once you feel comfortable in your own skin and accepting who you are and who you want to become, you’ll be able to move past those feelings of intimidation.
Here are five ways you can boost your confidence at the gym that’ll have you feeling strong and proud of your fitness accomplishments in no time.
Figure out your optimal gym time
Decide on what time would be best for you to hit the gym. There are a few different approaches you can take: going when the gym is more crowded, or going during off-hours when the gym isn’t busy.
Either option has benefits. When the gym is busy, you’re able to build your comfort around others, as well as take note of how to use those pieces of equipment you’ve always been curious about. If you prefer to go when the gym is less busy, you’re able to work out in a much less hectic, intimidating environment that will help you strengthen your confidence levels as you achieve your goals.
To find out when the gym’s busiest hours tend to be, ask front desk staff or fellow gym members what times they’ve noticed seem to experience more traffic.
Plan workouts beforehand
Approach your workout confidently with a definitive plan in mind. You’re much less likely to grow intimidated at the gym if you arrive knowing exactly what you wish to accomplish in the time you’ve set aside for the gym.
We suggest keeping a workout journal that you fill out before each gym session. Since you’ll have already written down what your workout will consist of, you can’t back down or back out – you’ll feel the need to finish what you said you would do.
Concentration is key
Instead of focusing on what others are doing or worrying about comparing yourself to those ridiculously ripped gym rats, concentrate on your workout.
Allow yourself to truly get in the zone by turning on a television show or cranking up your music. This way, you’ll be more able to tune out the distractions of your thoughts and those people around you.
Workout with your friends
When you make new friends at the gym or invite one of your friends to exercise with you, you’ll feel more at ease in your workout environment.
A trusted friend can make all the difference in your workout. Not only can they push you to reach and exceed your goals, but they will also be there for you to talk to, laugh with, and learn with.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Chances are you have quite a few questions about a certain workout move or whether your fitness level is suitable for a group workout class.
The gym is a prime resource for answering all of your health- and fitness-related questions. It’s a good bet that class instructors, personal trainers, front desk staff, and even other gym-goers would be more than happy to help you with your fitness dilemmas. Take advantage of this as a way to make yourself more confident and comfortable in the gym setting.
How have you been able to overcome intimidation in the gym?