You may have been there in the past or you may still be experiencing this now. The thought of walking into a gym to get your workout done is scary. You know working out is good for you but the thought of standing around the gym looking like you don't know what you're doing causes you anxiety.
There are ways to combat the confidence-draining feeling of being afraid you're going to feel inadequate or the fear of being judged. Gym anxiety is a real thing and doesn't discriminate. You are not alone and your feelings are valid.
How to overcome gym anxiety.
There are some ways to overcome gym anxiety and to make your workout an effective one.
1) Focus on your workout - Focusing on what you're doing instead of what's going on around you is a great way to keep your mind occupied. Concentrating on yourself and how good you're doing is a great way to stop comparing yourself to others. If you need more of a distraction, throw in your headphones and listen to some music, or your favourite podcast.
2) Introduce yourself to your instructor - If you've signed up for a fitness class, take the time either before or after to introduce yourself to the instructor. They're there to answer any questions or help with any concerns you may have about the class. Knowing they have new faces in the class should also make them be more direct with their instruction.
3) Exercise during 'off' hours - There are pros and cons about exercising during
'off' hours, or when the gym is less busy. Working out when there are fewer people can help you feel less self-conscious when doing your workout. Working out when the gym is busy can help you observe others and learn how to do certain strength workouts, or learn how to use certain equipment. The choice is up to you!
4) Bring a workout buddy - There really is strength in numbers. If gym anxiety is an issue for you, bringing someone you trust can be a big help. You'll be more relaxed and will more than likely enjoy your workout that much more.
5) Be confident - I know. Easier said than done. In reality, you are your only competition. If you compare yourself to others it's only going to leave you feeling frustrated. Start out at your level and work your way up to where you want to be. As time goes on you'll start to feel more confident, and your anxiety will either shrink or go away altogether.
Walking into a gym can be daunting, so, even if after you take all of these steps and the gym isn't for you, there's nothing wrong with doing your workouts from home!
It doesn't matter where you go to get your workout done, as long as you're taking care and appreciating your body for what it can and does do for you.
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