One common misconception is that gyms are packed with people who are at the height of health and fitness. It’s this misconception that makes walking through the front doors of a gym a nerve wrecking experience for anyone with insecurities.  

You timidly push through the doors, look around and see experts on each machine working up a sweat. Their biceps pumping back and forth as they run a half marathon on a treadmill. Legs spinning away as a woman with the best calves you’ve ever seen hits her 17th mile on the bikes. All you can think about is how you’re going to embarrass yourself. You turn and make a quick exit. Back to the yoga mat at home for you.

But if you would have looked a little closer; spent a little more time in there, you would see that there are plenty of people at the same fitness level as you. You just need to give the gym the chance.

We’ve put together a few ways that you can overcome gym intimidation.

Take a tour

We’re often much more comfortable in surroundings we’re familiar with, so before you join, take a tour with a member of staff. Learn where the locker rooms are, where the weight lifts are, where the swimming pool is – get to know the gym inside out.

This is also an excellent opportunity to get to grips with equipment you haven’t used before. One thing that often knocks confidence is not understanding how to correctly use a certain piece of equipment. Ask the person showing you around about anything you’re unsure of.  That way, when you walk in for your first session, you’ll know how to use everything in there.

Get the right gear

Turning up to the gym in old tracksuit bottoms and a t-shirt that’s a little too small, its colours all faded isn’t going to give you any confidence. Once you’ve signed up head out to a local fitness store and pick up some quality fitness attire. Not only will it help your confidence, but it’ll help you improve motivation and performance too.

Take a friend

Walking into the gym on your own is scary, so take someone with you. Perhaps a friend is looking to get in shape too, or maybe you already know someone who attends the gym. Having someone by your side will work wonders for confidence.

A friend can help keep you motivated. On those days where the last place you want to go is the gym, they can help get you in gear and excited about working up a sweat.

Ignore everyone else

Here’s a fact – no one else in the gym is going to pay you any attention (other than your friend or trainer). Stop worrying about what others are thinking, because they aren’t looking at you. They’re concentrating on getting the best workout they can. And that’s exactly what you should be doing.

If you’re thinking of joining a gym but worried you lack the confidence, think again. Start your fitness regime today.