Do you feel intimidated at the gym?
Do you stick to your one treadmill in the corner and get in and out before anyone sees you?
Do you want to feel more comfortable and confident?
Believe it or not, I've been there in the past and even revisit those feelings every now and then.
"But Justine, you've been working out for ten years!"
"But Justine, you're a kinesiologist!"
"But Justine, you know how to use every machine, even the weird looking ones!"
Trust me, it still happens every once in a while. Every time I step into a new gym it feels like the first day at a new school. You don't know where anything is, you don't know if the people will be nice, you're scared of everyone who might be staring at you wondering who you are, the list goes on.
After talking to some clients, friends, and thinking about what has helped me, I have come up with a few tips to help you get over that feeling!
1) Have a plan. Walking into the gym already knowing what you are going to do will save you time and give you direction. You'll be so focused on getting your work done for the day that you won't be wandering around thinking about what machine to do next or whether someone is watching you. Get in, get out, and conquer the workout!
2) Clothing. Wear something that is comfortable but also makes you feel confident! It's what's on the inside that matters most but if wearing a new workout shirt or sporting your favourite runners gives you an extra boost, go for it!
3) Have a gym buddy. This is great not only for accountability but also for keeping a bit of your comfort zone in your pocket. Someone else will be there with you on your fitness journey and that extra little bit of support can go a long way!
4) Hire a personal trainer (or kinesiologist 🙂 ) to show you around! If you're brand new it is VERY helpful having a professional show you the correct way to use machines (yes, even the weird looking ones) and give you direction in the gym. Sometimes people think that doing every single machine is good but it's not always the most efficient plan.
5) Time and consistency. Starting something new is always going to be hard at first. Showing up each day (even if it's only for 10-20 min) still progresses you towards your goals and builds healthy habits.
Hopefully these tips were helpful!
Justine Nagra, BSc Kin