The gym can be intimidating, especially the weight room and especially for females. Typically dominated by grunting individuals, who walk around with an overwhelming confidence. It can make you feel small, un-belonging, and like you’re doing everything wrong.
But nothing should stop you from going there and getting a great workout. Here are my tips to owning your gym session with confidence.
Know your stuff. Familiarize with the exercises you should (or want to) do, and how to go through sets, reps, and rest. This may mean asking for an orientation or a session with a trainer to show you the basic lifts and forms. There are plenty of online resources as well, but a trainer will be able to give you personalized cues and answer questions. Also, read up on gym etiquette and follow your gym’s rules regarding equipment or policies! 😉
Mind your own workout. Everyone is doing their own, personal workout. You can’t be bothered with their form, or the way they’ve set up their sets/reps/rest ratios. The bane of insecurity is to assume you’re definitely wrong and they’re definitely right. Don’t compare yourself to them. Every element of a workout is modified for a specific goal, and you have your own goals too. Stick to what you’ve given yourself. By all means you can take mental notes for next time, but what you have today is great. Focus on that.
Dress comfortably. I mean, wear something that makes you feel good and confident. It’s hard to feel confident if the clothes you’re wearing make you feel awkward. Don’t wear spandex running shorts if you feel your cheek starting to show, and don’t wear a blue shirt if you hate how the color looks on you. You’ll be looking at yourself in the mirror, so like the way the figure is dressed. Wear a hairstyle you like, or wear makeup if you want. It’s important to remember what you like, because again you’re here for you. Don’t be distracted by petty things.
Remember we’re all here to get better. Including the other gym-goers. It’s incredibly likely everyone is absorbed in their own workout. Just as you don’t want anyone judging you, don’t generate that negative energy for yourself by judging them. Not to say you’re not interesting, but there’s too much self-improvement going on to be distracted by other gym-goers.
Bring a friend. Someone to spot you, or someone for you to help out. Someone for you to chat with or to distract you from what bothers you. It can be fun and meaningful to have someone to workout with. Also, a great way for you to spend time with your friend while you both invest in your health and wellness!
I think a lot of shyness just comes with lack of experience, and thus your gym confidence will increase with each trip and each workout. I hope these tips help you get out there and get started!