Here Are 4 Simple Ways To Tackle Your Gym Insecurity
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Here Are 4 Simple Ways To Tackle Your Gym Insecurity

Spoiler alert: You don't have to wear Lululemon.

Here Are 4 Simple Ways To Tackle Your Gym Insecurity

The new year is coming up and everyone and their mother is joining a gym. If this is your first time or your fiftieth, the gym can be scary. Some of the dudes hulking around the free-weight area gulping protein shakes could probably throw me across the room with one hand and the women pounding away on the treadmill look like they’re about to step onto the Victoria’s Secret runway. Or at least that’s what it feels like if you’re just getting started. The gym is seriously intimidating when everyone seems to know what they’re doing and you feel clueless. Relive some stress and self-consciousness with these three tips.

1. Forget judgement.

My golden rule is, if someone is really judging a stranger, that person has their own issues that have nothing to do with you. What you wear and how much you can lift is your business. Plus, chances are that no one is scrutinizing your squat form anyway. If you can’t shake the worry, fake confidence until you have it for real. You’re working out for you, not for the ripped dude flexing in front of the mirrors.

2. Wear what you want.

The fact that you don’t waste your hard-earned cash on hundred-dollar pairs of Lululemon leggings doesn’t make you unworthy of running on a treadmill. Yes, it’s intimidating to see sorority girls wearing head-to-toe designer gear lined up on the ellipticals, but it’s not as if spending more money on your clothes helps burn more calories. If you can move in it, it’s workout gear.

3. Ask a friend.

Everyone knows that one person who works out like crazy and always talks about how sore their glutes are. Instead of tuning them out, take advantage of their knowledge and ask for tips about how to start getting in shape. Ask them about how to achieve your specific goals (ie, losing weight, building muscle, endurance, etc) and give them lots of info on what you like to do and what your schedule looks like. Or better yet, ask to tag along with them to their next workout. You'll learn some gym savviness that you can use when you eventually going by yourself.

4. Go in with a plan.

If you’re worried about looking lost among the machines and free weights, look up a simple beginners' workout routine that’s cardio- and body-weight-based. Cardio machines are fairly self explanatory, unlike the strength machines that look vaguely like medieval torture devices. Don’t underestimate the power of body weight workouts, either. Squats and arm circles can be killer if you do them right.

At the end of the day, gym culture is really stupid. A bunch of jacked dudes throwing weights around and grunting and women wearing selfie-worthy workout ensembles have nothing to do with fitness and everything to do with being self-conscious in what can be an uncomfortable environment. If you separate yourself from your insecurities, you’re much more likely to enjoy working out.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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