One key reason many people avoid working out is fear of the gym. For many people it’s about that sinking feeling you get as you walk in the door–all eyes will be on you, and you’ll never measure up. You picture a gym crowded with veterans carrying around bottles of mixed concoctions while they lift heavy weights and do countless reps on complicated machines. The thought of having everyone watch the “newbie” fumble with the machines or dropping the weights with a loud thud is intimidating. Even worse, you imagine yourself becoming the laughingstock of a viral video of you falling off a treadmill. No gym for you.
In reality, working out at most gyms really isn’t like that. However, to see for yourself, you have to overcome your gym phobia. It’s a pretty good bet that once you learn the ropes, you’ll find you have nothing to fear.
- Make the most of off-hours. Off hours are usually between 10 am to 3 pm. With fewer people in there, you won’t feel the overwhelming sense that everyone is watching you. Additionally, planning your routine before you hit the gym will lesson a lot of the anxiety. Watching YouTube videos and reading blogs about exercise moves, and maybe even practicing them at home before you go to the gym will help build your confidence.
- Ask people what exercise they’re doing and why. This may seem counterintuitive, but many people will gladly give you advice if you ask. If you strike up the conversation in between sets, most exercisers will welcome the quick break. And you may even make a gym buddy.
- Go with a friend. Ask a friend that regularly goes to a gym or a fitness class if you can tag along. Be sure to choose a friend who goes to the gym regularly. That friend is pumped and motivated about exercise. Chances are he or she will be happy to share that excitement with you. It’s tempting to ask someone who, like you, doesn’t really want to go to the gym or who fears it just as much as you but this I risky since you may talk each other out of it. Choose wisely.
- Hire a trainer. Most gyms have trainers that are ready to “show you the ropes” of the gym. They’ll build workout plans for you and ensure that you’re progressing through all your workouts with proper form. An experienced trainer can be your exercise confidante; he or she will listen to your worrisome feelings about the gym and help you to overcome them. Before you know it, the trainer will have you feeling like an expert!
There is no foolproof way to get over a fear of going to the gym. The truth is, it can be intimidating. But you can overcome it by mustering up just a little bit of confidence, walking in there, and working out. Think about it. How did these people at the gym get into such great shape? Well, they put aside their worry about other gym members and got to it.
If you still aren’t convinced, try a smaller fitness studio that caters to the nontraditional gym members. Here, at 2Perform Fitness, we offer small group classes that allow for individual attention, so there’s never any need for gym phobia. Our trainers are here to help motivate you, support you, and give you the self-confidence you need to meet your goals. Add to that the support of other 2Perform members and you’ll feel that gym phobia melt away.
Why not take advantage of a free trial to see what our McKinney, Texas fitness studio is all about?