Have you experienced gym anxiety before? We have all been there! Gym anxiety typically involves feelings of fear of being judged based on your fitness level, and/or uncertainty involving equipment or how to perform exercises.
We are here to reassure you that overcoming gym anxiety IS possible, and will only improve with time as you begin to face your fear and embrace life outside of your comfort zone.
A quote we live by at ABA is to “Show up in every single moment like you’re meant to be there”. The gym is a communal space, and you have every right to be there. There is a common misconception that you need to meet a certain criteria to ‘fit in’ at the gym. But everyone deserves to work out and feel comfortable and confident in the gym, regardless of whether you are a beginner or advanced. The gym isn’t just for bodybuilders and athletes – after all, even they started somewhere! Before Gem and I competed, we started out just like everyone else – at the very beginning!
Here are our top tips for overcoming gym anxiety:
1. Wear activewear that you feel confident in
Pop on a cute activewear set or baggy tee; whatever makes you feel like YOU. Try to boost your confidence wherever possible, and for us, this starts with a good gym outfit.
2. Organise a playlist to listen to that puts you in a good mood
Whether it's Harry Styles' new album or some hectic heavy metal (each to their own) pre-prepare a mood-boosting playlist for your session. You might even prefer to listen to a podcast while you train! If so, check out our podcast here.
3. Bring a friend/family member/partner to train with
Gym buddies make everything better! Start with a gym buddy and then you'll feel confident going solo in no time.
4. Go during non-peak hour times to test out the equipment that you haven't used before
It can be daunting attempting to set up a machine that you've never used before so this is one of our favourite gym-anxiety hacks. Try a late-night session, or mid-morning or mid-afternoon (typical peak times are 5am-8am, midday and 5pm-8pm!).
5. Invest in a PT to show you proper technique and ensure you are using equipment properly
The confidence you'll have after training with a PT is priceless. They will show you around the gym, teach you to use each piece of equipment and have you sorted with programs to smash out and, will be by your side to encourage you!
6. Go in with a structured program so that you know exactly what you are doing
This is a GAME CHANGER. Most gym anxiety comes from not knowing what to do or knowing if you're doing it right... that's where Gem and I come in! Learn about our ABA 1:1 coaching here. And lastly, REMEMBER:
Everyone at the gym is more focused on themselves than what you are doing! If you ever do have a bad experience or are made to feel uncomfortable by a fellow gym member, contact staff immediately, as the gym needs to be a safe space for all!