If you have never walked into a gym before, it’s understandable to feel a little intimidated. With equipment that you don’t know how to use, people with bodies you perceive to be better than yours, and rules that you don’t yet understand, you can’t be blamed for having some fear of the gym. It can be overwhelming for anybody, even for those who have gone to the gym but took a break in the pandemic.
But here’s the thing: You shouldn’t let your fears take over your need for exercise. There are benefits to keeping fit for both your short and long-term health, so you should do whatever you can to overcome your fears.
Here are some suggestions:
Think of the positives
Yes, walking into a gym can be intimidating for the first time, but don’t let your fears prey on your mind. Instead, focus on the benefits. As you can read in the linked article, you will improve your level of fitness, find relief from your stresses, and potentially meet some new friends. These are just a few of the benefits, among many others. So, keep all of the positives in mind, and use them to banish your gym fears.
Get a free gift pass
You don’t always need to sign up to the gym right away. If you’re afraid of wasting money on something that you might quit later, look for those gyms that offer a free guest pass. Fitness 19 offers this service to fitness newbies and there are bound to other gyms in your area that offer the same. Yes, you will have to cross the threshold of the gym, but because money won’t be an issue, you might have more peace of mind about going in there. This also helps to know if you like that particular gym before committing.
Avoid peak hours
If you don’t want to exercise with a lot of other people, avoid peak hours. These will vary from gym to gym so give them a call to find out when the quietest times will be. When you aren’t surrounded by others, you might feel comfortable, especially if you’re worried about people judging you. Of course, the chance of people judging you are slim anyway. Most gym users will be fixated on what they are doing, and those who aren’t will usually be supportive of fitness newbies. Still, if you do feel more comfortable exercising during slow periods, speak to the gym staff for more advice.
Get started at home
If you’re worried about using particular types of equipment, remember that you don’t need to be in the gym to use them. You could purchase similar for your home, and practice in a place you are comfortable in. You don’t necessarily need to pay over the odds for them either, as a quick Google search will point you to products you can buy second hand. After practicing at home, you might feel more comfortable about going to the gym, especially as there will be trainers on hand to help you get the most out of each type of equipment.
Everybody has to start somewhere. After you have been to the gym a few times, you will start to feel a lot more comfortable. So, don’t let your fears get the better of you. Follow our suggestions, have courage, and perhaps take somebody along with you if it will help you feel better.