Do You Have a Gym Phobia?
Deciding to join a gym can be a very daunting experience for many people and their fear of it can actually stop them from doing so. I can totally relate to this fear! When you are trying something new for the first time, it can be a little overwhelming to walk into a place where everybody seems to know what they are doing. Trust me, I have been there before!
How to Overcome a Gym Phobia
There are a few easy ways you can overcome your fear of the gym and actually start to enjoy working out. It may even become a place for you to relax and unwind. My top tips are:
Wear Clothes You are Comfortable In
If you don’t feel comfortable in short shorts or cut off crop tops, then don't wear them! When working out you should be 100% comfortable, so that you can focus on getting the best out of your workout. Don't concern yourself as to whether or not the people around you are looking at you. For the record, they are probably too busy focusing on what they are doing to even know that you're there!
Make Music Your Bestie
Add your favourite beats and a set of headphones to your gym essentials list! Listening to upbeat tracks really helps me take my workouts to the next level. It is also especially helpful at passing the time during my LISS cardio sessions. The other great thing about tuning in to the best workout tracks? It gives you the perfect excuse to ‘hide’ if you get a little intimidated or worried.
If someone is bothering you or you are scared to be approached, you can put your headphones on and this pretty much guarantees you privacy. However, in saying this don’t be afraid to talk to people at the gym! A smile can go a long way! Making friends will help to put you at ease and to feel more comfortable.
Don't Be Afraid to Fail
If you only take one thing away from this blog, it should be this point! So many people think everyone knows exactly what they are doing in the gym, and this makes them embarrassed to try new things because they are scared they will do it ‘wrong’. Guess what girls? EVERYONE started somewhere! That girl that looks like she has been working out with weights her whole life? At one point she wouldn’t have known what a bicep curl was!
Don’t be afraid to ask for help, and especially do not be afraid to do something ‘wrong’. Whether that be using a machine incorrectly or having imperfect form, learn from these mistakes and move on. If people see you, they won’t laugh at you. Chances are they will offer to help you because they have been in the same position before. If you need a little guidance, ask the trainers who work there - that is what they are there for!
Join with a Friend
If you are feeling self conscious and intimidated by going to the gym alone, take a friend! Having someone else to learn the ropes with can ease your mind until you feel comfortable enough to start attending alone. Training with someone is also a great way to stay accountable in keeping on track with your health and fitness goals.
Don't Compare Yourself to Others
I think a big part of gym phobia is the self-defeating thoughts people have. The ‘I’m not good enough’ and ‘I’m going to be so bad’ thoughts are the ones that can have a massive impact on people and their progress. Instead of looking at the person sprinting on the treadmill next to you and thinking your walk isn’t good enough, remind yourself that they probably weren't doing that during their very first session!
Nobody gets fit without putting in effort and starting somewhere. Don’t focus on the need to ‘get fit’ to go to the gym, get fit AT the gym - that is what it is there for.
Take a Class
If you feel a little intimidated by the weights room and are getting sick of slugging it out on the treadmill every day, try a class! Most gyms have classes available targeting a range of needs. The best bit about doing a class is you won’t feel alone, because you are all in it together for the next 30 mins or so. It is also a good way to learn new exercises and make friends!
Go in with a Plan
If you are worried about heading to the gym because you get confused and don’t know what to do when you get there, having a plan is a life saver! Not only will you feel like you have a purpose, but it will also prevent time wasting. If you don’t know where to begin, the Sweat app gives you structured training programs plus on demand workouts suitable for all levels.
I hope these tips have helped girls. Remember, we have ALL been there! If you change your outlook and think of the gym as a positive place where you can go to improve yourself, you will be feeling better about it, in no time!Love, Kayla xx
* Disclaimer: This blog post is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. The above information should not be used to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease or medical condition. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet, sleep methods, daily activity, or fitness routine. Sweat assumes no responsibility for any personal injury or damage sustained by any recommendations, opinions, or advice given in this article.