Are you suffering from gymtimidation?

November 2023 

Follow our top tips on how to navigate the gym for success.

Gymtimidation is  the anxiety that you can feel either going to or working out in a gym. More than just a media buzzword, it is a phenomenon that can present a significant barrier to exercise. 

There are many different reasons why you might have some anxiety about going to the gym, including fear of being judged by other people, pressure of not knowing how to use weights and machines, or not being confident about your body and how you compare with other gym-goers. Thankfully there are a number of ways you can combat gymtimidation and make a trip to the gym more enjoyable. 

Here are our top tips:

Gyms come in many different shapes and sizes. It’s a good idea to shop around until you find the right gym for you, whether that’s a small boutique gym, a female-only gym, or a large facility with numerous classes and equipment to choose from. 
Most gyms will offer introductory tours, and explain how to use all the equipment, weights and machines safely. If you have questions regarding anything, you can learn more about it right there and then. 
Gyms can become crowded during peak hours, which might add to the intimidation factor. Try to visit the gym during an off-peak time when there are fewer people around. This can give you more space and time to exercise without feeling self-conscious. You also might find that you have more time on different types of equipment, allowing you to test and try new ones you haven't before. 
Familiarise yourself with gym equipment and exercises through online resources, videos or apps. This will help you to combat any nerves you might have and better prepare you for what to expect before your first workout.
Staying accountable is one of the best ways to ensure you actually turn up to the gym in the first place (which can often be the hardest part). Bring a gym buddy and make a pact to show up for each other. Working out with a friend can make all the difference as motivate and support each other on your fitness journey. 
If you're new to the gym or just want to improve your exercise knowledge and overall fitness, hiring a personal trainer can be a great way to get started and ensure you get the best results possible. Personal trainers will create a tailored workout plan just for you and teach you proper techniques and which gym equipment you need. 
Sometimes gyms appear to be intimidating because you're worried about your appearance. Wear what makes you feel comfortable while you're working out, whether that's a baggy T-shirt and gym shorts or tight-fitting yoga pants and a tank top.
Listening to music can help get you motivated and keep you there. Wearing headphones can help you tune out distractions so you can focus on your workout. Figure out what types of songs encourage you to be active, and make a playlist that's long enough to last the duration of your workout session. 

Being able to visualise progress toward your fitness goals can improve your motivation to keep going back to the gym. Set your fitness goal and choose an action plan, track your activities to reach your goal, join challenges to keep motivated, and find tips on how to live and maintain a healthy life.   

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