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Gymtimidation Is Real - Here Are The Best Solutions To Overcome It


Gymtimidation is a genuine issue that has to be addressed.

The gym may be a fantastic place as they are stocked with a tonne of fitness-related equipment. In addition, you have access to qualified trainers that can help you achieve your perfect body. The sole issue? Gyms may be somewhat intimidating as well.

You tend to run into picture-perfect exercise experts with chiseled abs and trim waists 90% of the time near the treadmill. It's challenging to avoid feeling overburdened when we're already working out because we're dissatisfied with a certain aspect of our bodies.

Thankfully, there are strategies for overcoming gymtimidation that we will tell you about in this article.

A man in a red shirt screaming while working out with dumbbells
A man in a red shirt screaming while working out with dumbbells

COPYRIGHT_WI: Published on https://washingtonindependent.com/gymtimidation/ by Tyrese Griffin on 2022-07-02T01:42:28.146Z

What Is Gymtimidation?

The sensation of dread, anxiety or overall intimidation we get when visiting the gym is referred to as "gymtimidation." Sometimes the sense of gymtimidation is so strong that you are unable to take the initial step toward acquiring a membership. Sometimes you end up paying the monthly charge but are not able to gather the courage to enter the gym doors.

Gymtimidation is a widespread phenomenon that occurs in real life. In fact, according to a PureGym poll of its members, one in four would prefer to confront spiders than go to the gym!

Research About Gymtimidation

OnePoll and Isopure commissioned a poll of 2,000 Americans for Studyfinds, which indicated that 50% of respondents had experienced gymtimidation, which can manifest in a variety of ways. Thirty-two percent of respondents said they felt frightened while exercising near someone physically fit. When exercising in front of a person of the opposite sex, 17% of people reported feeling uneasy.

The sheer variety of exercise programs offered at certain gyms is another factor, which 48 percent of respondents say leaves them feeling overwhelmed. Remember to go for a lovely solitary run around the block instead of canceling your membership: Running outside, according to 36% of respondents, is worse than beginning a brand-new workout regimen.

Then there are individuals who are so intimidated by gyms that they don't appear to have visited one recently: 37 percent of respondents stated they had never worked out and were too unfit to begin an exercise regimen, while 31% said they felt apprehensive when thinking about attempting to get in shape.

Treadmills in a line at gym while a man runs on one
Treadmills in a line at gym while a man runs on one

What Causes Gymtimidation?

Like any other type of anxiety, gym anxiety can be complex and individualized, but here are some common scenarios that might trigger it:

Feeling Body-Conscious

One in three people who use the gym says they experience self-consciousness while exercising next to someone in good shape. But keep in mind that everyone started exactly where you are right now and that most people around you are more concerned with accomplishing their own objectives than with how you look.

You Are A Beginner

You could feel frightened if you've never worked out in a gym before or if it has been a while. Will everyone be more physically fit than me? Will others evaluate me? What should I do? Where should I begin? These sensations and thoughts, often known as situational anxiety, are brought on if you are new at the gym.

Changing Gym

Maybe you've been exercising at the same gym for a long time, but you recently changed the place. Finding your way around the new layout, using the toilet and locker rooms, finding the equipment you wish to use, and establishing a new routine may be stressful.

Unrealistic Expectations From Social Media

Up to 55% of women say they skip the gym because they don't think they appear fit enough. And it's hardly surprising that so many women feel this way, considering the pervasiveness of false body ideals on social media. Keep in mind, though, that social media is really a highlight reel of some people's life.

Instagram is home to numerous "fitness models," and many of them look fit thanks to a mix of staged photographs, editing techniques, disordered eating habits, and, all too frequently, performance-enhancing drugs. Try not to compare your fitness path to others because each person's journey is different.

Crowded Gyms

Crowded indoor areas can make many individuals uncomfortable, especially in light of the pandemic. The concept of going back to life as we knew it before the pandemic can cause feelings of worry and uncertainty, and post-COVID anxiety is a genuine phenomenon.

Crowded gym with people working out on treadmills
Crowded gym with people working out on treadmills

How To Overcome Gymtimidation?

This list provides insightful suggestions on how you might improve in overcoming gym anxiety. So let's get right into it without further ado.

Focus On Yourself

Keeping your attention on your goals is considerably simpler when you are completely aware of what you are doing and why. You cease thinking about those nearby, and they begin to disappear. Why fight with the initial fumbling when a lot of the frustration in the gym comes from not knowing where to start with which exercise?

Determine your goals for your routine and the steps necessary to achieve them. For instance, if you want to tone up and reduce fat, you can concentrate on increasing your muscle mass and cutting calories. Your genes can immediately point up the areas of your routine where you can make the most adjustments.

It's simple to stroll into the weight gym feeling confident when you've taken the time to understand your DNA and determine what will work best for you. As a result of knowing exactly what kind of exercises will produce results, your confidence will increase. You're not merely following what you've seen on YouTube without thinking.

Resistance Training

Classes are a terrific opportunity to make new friends and get accustomed to the gym atmosphere. However, resistance training is a technique that may help you grow and keep muscle, boost your physical strength, and improve your metabolic health, whether your objective is to tone up, reduce weight, or improve health.

Progressive overload, which is accomplished by gradually increasing the stress on your muscles, is one of the essential elements of a successful resistance training regimen. Even though some sessions could use weights, they frequently concentrate on building muscle endurance (by doing a lot of repetitions with light loads) and might not be stimulating enough to provide noticeable effects.

As a result, even if you improve at the activities you do in class, your physique might not alter that much. You will be far more likely to see benefits from a resistance training program that challenges your body more and more as it is adapted to you and your goals.

A gym instructor helping a woman in a workout
A gym instructor helping a woman in a workout

Prepare A Good Playlist

A new study from McGill University in Canada found that listening to music may even make people feel rewarded because it causes our brains to produce dopamine, the feel-good hormone, which triggers the same pleasant emotions as participating in your favorite hobbies. This may be a really useful tool for keeping your motivation up when working out.

Now is the time to channel it and go to the gym with a playlist of your favorite upbeat songs if you have a song that truly "speaks to you" and makes you yell out the words like Beyoncé.

Choose The Right Gym For Yourself

Not every gym is made equal. Athletes, bodybuilders, and other advanced exercisers go to specific gyms. If you've never worked out before, some disciplines like CrossFit generally aren't the ideal fit. However, Planet Fitness, for instance, offers services to individuals at all fitness levels and deliberately promotes a welcoming, "judgment-free" environment. So have a look around to pick the best gym for yourself.

Try A Group Class

Group lessons may be enjoyable. They're a terrific way to meet people; because they're structured, you'll always know what to do. Whatever your interest, whether it's yoga, Pilates, or spinning, start with that. At first, you might have difficulties keeping up, but don't worry—you'll get better. Follow your own pace, please. This is not a race.

Prep For A Confident Gym Experience

Understand what to eat and drink before going to the gym to feel energized and ready. Make sure to bring water so you can stay hydrated as well. If you don't have a strategy for rehydration, you don't want to be the one left panting by the side of the treadmill.

Hopefully, you've been practicing staying healthy and active at home with the help of some helpful web videos and tutorials. If so, you may use the same approach to prepare for your workout session. If using weights and other equipment makes you nervous, watch tutorials to learn how to use them first. On YouTube, there is a tonne of introduction videos!

You don't have to enter the gym and begin some of the most challenging workouts there are. Start using tools and practices you are familiar with. You might start to go out as your confidence increases.


Find A Workout Friend

When we have a supporting companion at our sides, we immediately feel a little less exposed when entering a new area. Try sharing this with a trusted friend if you're feeling shy. You may work out together to be each other's support (and inspiration!) partners.

If you don't know anybody directly, you may find like-minded people who share your interests in fitness by using free applications like Strava, MeetUp, and Bvddy.

Find Ways To Boost Confidence

It's your responsibility to combat the concern with all the assurance you have. The good news is that there isn't just one technique to accomplish this. Start by having a good night's sleep, which should instantly make you feel more energized and confident.

Next, make a playlist of songs you can play to motivate yourself. By putting in those earphones and listening to some music, you may cease paying close attention to individuals around you.

Avoid getting too caught up in what you "should" wear while deciding on your gym clothes. The best action you can take is to create a comfortable environment for yourself.

You won't be able to dominate your workout if you're preoccupied with what you're wearing. Make sure your leggings don't sag while you're bending over. Achieve a decent balance between cute and functional.

Check what your gym's "peak" hours are before you arrive since more people mean more things for the majority of gymtimidation sufferers to worry about. You'll save a lot of unnecessary tension by visiting the site outside of the hours when it's most likely to be crowded.

Plan Your Workout

Making a strategy before you start is essential for time management and effectiveness, as well as for removing any fear of the unknown.

You'll be able to concentrate on your workout rather than the confusion of what to do next if you know exactly which exercises you want to complete and in what order. Additionally, if visiting the restrooms makes you anxious, consider how you might prevent it by planning for exercises.

People Also Ask

Is Gymtimidation Real?

OnePoll and Isopure commissioned a poll of 2,000 Americans for Studyfinds, which indicated that 50% of respondents had experienced gymtimidation, which can manifest in a variety of ways. Thirty-two percent of respondents said they felt frightened while exercising near someone who is physically fit.

How Can I Avoid Gymtimidation?

Here are some ways you can avoid gymtimidation:

  • Plan an introduction
  • Make a rousing playlist
  • Find a workout companion
  • Consider your accomplishments
  • Don't be impatient for the result

Why Do I Have Gym Anxiety?

Changing in public view or feeling intimidated by others in the greater physical condition and having difficulty utilizing the equipment can possibly become the reason for gym anxiety.

A woman in grey hoodie biting her nails while sitting on a yoga mat
A woman in grey hoodie biting her nails while sitting on a yoga mat


Gymtimidation can be a common side effect of beginning a new workout regimen. Focus on making little progress by using the coping strategies mentioned above to help you manage your anxiety.

If you discover that gymtimidation is crippling you or isn't getting better with effort, get expert assistance.

Otherwise, be easy knowing that everyone at the gym started as a novice. Everyone faced obstacles or entered the gym doors for the first time. The most important thing is your health and wellbeing; you belong where you are most at ease in your skin.

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About The Authors

Tyrese Griffin

Tyrese Griffin - Tyrese started her education in the performing arts at the prestigious Alexander Hamilton Academy in Los Angeles. She returned to civilian life after serving in the United States Army as a tracked vehicle operator, and started writing short stories and screenplays, as well as directing short films and music videos. She has published six novels, which have sold over 200,000 copies, as well as audiobooks and short stories for anthologies, and has earned several awards.

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