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How to Overcome Gymtimidation (And Keep Going Afterwards)

Every new school year is another year to improve ourselves. It’s a time to try new things, get more organized, and even make healthier choices. One of those healthy choices could be going to the on-campus gym. Yet there’s this lingering fear of looking like a newbie at every machine, of people watching you while you workout, or even of the crowd. It can be overwhelming and prevent you from going to the gym. Or maybe you’ve been going for a while, but as life gets busier, the gym seems further and further away. With that said, here are five ways for you to overcome “gymtimidation” and start making moves towards your fitness goals.

1. Bring a friend  

F is for friends who do stuff together (thank you Spongebob!), and going to the gym is one of them. While some prefer to be a lone wolf, others may need a friend to help them push through that last rep. Not only will having a gym buddy curb your anxiety, it will also help you to be more accountable for your goals and it will give you a support system along the way.

2. Plan out your workouts ahead of time

Part of the fear of the gym is not knowing what to do when you get there. It’s especially bad when the machine you want is already taken and it doesn’t look like you’ll be getting it anytime soon. Having a pre-planned workout, either through a fitness app or even on a sheet of paper, will help make your gym session a success regardless. And if part of your workout includes a machine that’s already in use, don’t be afraid to make adjustments or use a different machine until the one you want opens up.  

3. Sign up for gym classes  

Gym classes are an easy way to get yourself going to the gym. You have a wide range of fun and challenging ways to push yourself, from Zumba to Spin to Crossfit. It also helps with overcoming gym fear because you know for certain that everyone is focused on enjoying the class just as much as you are. Not to mention, gym classes are a great way to meet new people who could be your next gym buddy!  

4. Bring your workout clothes with you

Crunched for time? Have your gym clothes on hand wherever you go, so that you can squeeze in a quick session without having to go home and change. The fact that you’re prepared psychs you up into getting a workout in during your busy day, making you even more accountable and one step closer to your fitness goals.

5. Remember, nobody is perfect!

Sometimes what’s holding us back is the idea that you’re supposed to know what you’re doing as soon as you get there. Well, guess what? You don’t! No one magically comes to the gym as an expert on every machine, every workout, or every technique. The bottom line is that everyone is trying to reach their goals the same as you are. It’s not a competition, it’s a process. The best thing that you can do is know what you’re comfortable with, crush your gym session, and have fun while doing it!







Hey! My name is Olivia and I'm a college junior studying Linguistics and American Studies. I’ve been writing since I was young and it gave me so much joy at the time. But once I started college, I traded my pen and paper for a Macbook and wrote for school instead. But some part of me still wanted to write for myself, and I was finally motivated to do so in January 2017. Aside from writing,  I'm a Christian who loves reading, cooking, shopping, playing video games, and sleeping (especially). I'm very much into health and fitness (while at the same time a sweet tooth) and I'm always researching on how to life hack everything. If I'm not studying in the library like a good student should, I'm hanging out with friends or relaxing in my room after a long day.
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