Whether you’re a gym newbie or veteran, gym anxiety affects everyone. When you move to a college campus, it can be even more intimidating. If you’re nervous about heading to the gym on campus, here are my best tips to help you overcome gym anxiety.
- Gear Up
Going to the gym can be hard when all you have to wear is old high school tee shirts and ugly gym shorts. Buy some cute tops or super soft leggings! Find things that make you feel comfortable and confident. Consider investing in a good pair of shoes and extra supportive sports bras to ensure your feet and back aren’t so sore after your workout. Check out stores like Old Navy for affordable and cute outfits and Nike for good running and training shoes.
- Bring a Buddy
Sometimes it can be nerve-wracking going to the gym by yourself, especially if you’re new to it. Consider asking a friend if they want to join you for a workout. Your workouts will be way more fun, and you are more likely to stick to a training schedule if you commit to going with someone else. Win-win!
- Create a Routine
If you played sports in high school or did other physical extracurriculars, you may know a thing or two about creating a fitness routine. Some people avoid the gym because they have no plans for what they are going to do. Write down your own workout plan, incorporating your favorite exercises that you already know. The structure will make you more focused on what you’re doing rather than what everyone else is thinking. If you need ideas, websites like Popsugar.com have lots of different workout routines for all levels.
- Don’t Go During “Rush Hour”
My biggest problem is that I get nervous when there are too many people in the gym. If you’re like me, try to scope out your campus’ gyms and figure out when it’s least busy. If those hours work with your schedule, consider working out then. (I find that the mornings aren’t very busy because college students like to SLEEP.)
- Consider Taking a Class
You may feel nervous because you really have no idea where to start. That’s totally okay! Making a workout routine can be tough, so consider taking a group fitness class instead. Many colleges offer a variety of fitness classes for all levels that are totally free (here are Fike’s). You can even bring a friend or group to make the workout more like a social event.
- Start Small
It can be hard to drag yourself to the gym if an hour and a half workout is in front of you. If you’re new to the gym or jumping back in, start small. Plan to workout three days a week for only 30 minutes. When you feel more comfortable and find things you enjoy, you can create longer workouts or workout more often. #gymfever
- Be Confident
I know, I know. Being confident is easier said than done, but we all have to try! Be confident that you are going to crush your gym session. Be confident that you are going to make progress. Be confident in yourself and your body! Remember that everyone feels a little anxious when going to the gym. What’s important is that you push yourself to your max and focus on steady, healthy progress towards whatever goal you set.