I started going to the gym in March (2016) and sadly stopped going for a full month, partially due to this issue. I had a goal in mind, I wanted to get fit and healthy and actually stick to it. The gym is not for everyone but someone might be afraid to go to the gym, even if they really want to, because they have anxiety like “what if I’m not doing the exercise right?” or “what if everyone stares at me?”. I’ve definitely had those thoughts before and I think a lot of people have, too. Over time, it’s gotten much better for me but every once in a while, on one of my bad days, it comes back. I certainly don’t want negative thoughts to control the way I view myself or get in the way of my fitness journey (OR YOURS!). So just in case you’re afraid to go to the gym because of this issue or if anxiety gets to you when you’re at the gym, here are some of my tips & tricks to overcome it and not get discouraged:
- Create a Gym Playlist– Just like when you study or have a killer jam sesh in the car. As I said in one of my previous posts, I’m one who cannot run without music; it just motivates me and helps me to keep pushing myself so I don’t stop and regret it later. Here’s a link to just a few songs I listen to when I’m at the gym :Music Playlists For Everyday Life
- Be Comfortable!- If we’re being 100% honest, when I first started going to the gym I ALWAYS wore make-up. Yeah, I know it’s supposed to be a big no no in the fitness community, but it made me comfortable. Now when I go to the gym, I don’t ever wear it (unless I’m coming from work,etc.). If you do not feel comfortable in wearing a certain item of clothing (e.g. shorts, tanks, sports bra), that’s okay! Clothing (at least for me) is a big part of feeling comfy at the gym. Wear what makes you feel good!
- Everyone Is On Their Own Journey (Do Not Compare)- It also took me a while to learn this but when I did, it made a big difference. There are people at the gym who have been going for years, they are further along than some others are. Also, with different body types out there, do not ever feel like you’re not making progress or that you should look like someone else. I still struggle with this at times but that’s no reason for me to just up and quit. Please do not compare yourself to others, especially not knowing how far along they are and what goals they have for themselves. Fitness takes a lot of dedication and I believe that anyone who is willing to try, they will succeed!
- Have A Schedule- Personally, I have 4 days out of the week that I focus on a specific part of my body (legs, abs, etc.). I rotate them out and just knowing what I’m going to the gym to work on, makes me not get so anxious. Also, I do not go during the peak hours. There are so many people during 11-1 p.m. because a lot of people go during their lunch break and it’s MADNESS lol. With that many people around you paired with waiting for an open machine is enough to make anyone anxious or agitated. You could find out your gym’s peak hours simply by asking an employee or manager; some gyms have a print out that shows you when they are so you will not easily forget.
So that’s just a few tips and tricks I have for today. If any of you would like more, feel free to ask. A big part of my encouragement is my boyfriend; so if you have a friend or even a family member that could go with you, that could help you as well. I have nothing against people who decide that the gym just is not for them. I will do an at-home fitness post very soon for you guys. Thank you so much for reading even though it was a bit lengthy!
XO LOVE, LEE