This is such a common problem amongst new gym-goers, feeling nervous, scared or intimidated to go into the gym or into the weights area, meaning that there's a whole segment of people who want to get into the gym but feel like they can't.
So what are the best ways to overcome gymtimidation?
Know what you’re doing
This point is fairly obvious, but if you feel confident in your workout then there's nothing stopping you! Knowing your goals, your limits and your exercise techniques will allow you to get on with your workout in a focussed and controlled way without the need for any 'help' or interjection from other members or staff.
Get some good headphones and a power playlist
Working out with headphones in, especially noise-cancelling ones, will help you focus on yourself and your workout. Having a power playlist will empower you to keep going strong!
Go with a gym buddy
If you're still a bit worried about setting foot inside a gym then you could always team up with a workout buddy! Having a friend or partner to train with will help you get used to training in the gym without feeling like you're on your own. You can build up your confidence and get to know the facility with them so that when you do come by yourself you know what you're doing!
Have a plan and stick to it
Having a workout plan will help keep you focussed in your session as well as giving you direction and purpose in the gym without floating about listlessly.
Keep showing up
You'll never get over your fears and anxieties by not trying, as harsh as that sounds! Keep showing up, even if it's for 30 minutes. You'll start to get used to the equipment, atmosphere and routine!
Get to know the regulars
Chances are, if you start going to work out at the same time each time then you'll most likely get to know a few faces. Giving a smile or a head-nod without taking out your headphones will acknowledge others in the gym without giving the impression you want to chat. If you want to chat, take out a headphone!
Get a Personal Trainer
The best way to get used to working out is by hiring a Personal Trainer to teach you everything you need to know as well as provide a comprehensive workout plan to help you reach your goals quickly and safely. If you're doing what your PT has coached you then you should be feeling much more confident but if you need extra help and guidance you've got a great source of relevant info and advice from your trainer!
Things to avoid
There are various etiquette rules to be followed in the gym which will help you on the good side of members and staff alike. Below is a list of things you shouldn't do in the gym!
Not putting weights away
This is the classic faux pas in the gym, always put your weights back when you're finished. By not doing this, you'll quickly be in the bad books! If you don't, the staff or members will.. and nobody likes clearing up after others.
Not wiping down your equipment after use
During these times this one is especially important. For the comfort and safety of others, it's important to wipe down the equipment with some sort of antibacterial, antiviral cleaning product. Also for the sweatier amongst us, it's always nice to get rid of your sweat for the next person.
Spending ages on a piece of equipment
Most people don't have all day to work out at the gym so it's important you're aware of others whilst training. Hogging kit and spending ages on certain exercises can sometimes cause friction between members. If someone asks you how many sets you have left is basically saying 'I'm on there after you, and please hurry up a little'. In response to this, just say you're happy for them to jump in whilst you're resting (if you're not happy with that then just hurry up a little)
Using weights which are far too heavy with bad technique
If you're not using proper technique and lifting with your ego then you might find people glancing over to see 'what's going on over there!?' No one really cares how much weight you're lifting, as long as it's with good technique! Leave your ego at the door and do things properly!
Grunting, groaning, shouting, slamming weights etc.
Making excessive noise in the gym is a big no-no. From grunting in your sets to dropping the weights heavily, making noise will disrupt the atmosphere as well as the other members and staff who are trying to get on with their own thing. Keep the noise to a minimum and always control the weights on the descent!
So now you know what to look out for when you're at the gym you'll probably see other members breaking the unwritten rules..!
Hopefully, with all the above tips and info you'll feel much more confident going into the gym but if for any reason you still feel gymtimidated.. then that's where we come in!
If you want a personalised and private training experience then you need to come and see us at our Portside Personal Training studio to get you to a point where you feel happy exercising by yourself!
Just hit the link below to book your first session free!
We're based on the Hove end of Shoreham Ports, at Unit 13 Hove Enterprise Centre near Hove Lagoon!