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Feeling self-conscious at the gym? 5 tips to feel more comfortable

Self-conscious at the gym

The gym can be a great place to enhance your fitness, relax and socialize, but far too many women are left feeling uncomfortable in this type of environment. If you wear avoiding going there before the coronavirus pandemic and now wonder if you will return as businesses start to reopen, it might be because you feel nervous, awkward, or uneasy there. If that’s the case, it’s time to make a change. To enhance your confidence, take a look at these sure-fire ways to get over feeling self-conscious at the gym.

1. Choose the right gym

If you want to hit the gym to work on your cardio or relax in the steam room, then a venue filled with bodybuilders probably isn’t going to be your thing. The atmosphere varies greatly from one gym to another, so don’t automatically join the gym that’s the closest distance to your house.

Instead, visit a variety of venues before you decide on the one that’s right for you. Obviously this will happen on the other side of COVID-19 (stay home and be safe in the meantime, please).

2. Book personal training sessions

Many women feel uncomfortable at the gym or doing sports if they feel like they don’t know what they’re doing. Even worse, you probably feel like other people think you don’t know what you’re doing! A few sessions with a personal trainer can eliminate these doubts and leave you feeling more confident than ever.

Plus, a trainer will show you how to avoid injuries and have proper form, which is especially important when doing weights. When you’re familiar with how the equipment works and you’ve perfecting your body from harm, then you’ll likely forget why you were ever feeling self-conscious at the gym before.

3. Treat yourself to new gym clothes

How you dress can have a big impact on how you feel. If you’re comfortable working out in some old sweats and a well-worn T-shirt, that’s great, but, if you’re not, then don’t hesitate to treat yourself to something new.

Don’t forget – you don’t have to expose a lot of flesh when you’re in the gym or at the pool. A full-coverage swimsuit or long-sleeved performance tops gives you the support you need without leaving you feeling too exposed.

Many gyms even have dress codes, and your location might be on that growing list. If you’re not sure, ask the person at the front desk the next time you’re there or call them before you get there.

4. Feeling self-conscious at the gym? Have a goal

If you have a plan for what to do during your gym visits, then you’re less likely to spend time thinking about how uncomfortable you feel there. In fact, you’ll be so busy focusing on your progress that you’ll forget to feel nervous at all!

Set yourself a target for every gym session, as well as bigger, long-term goals. You’ll soon feel more confident when you’re working out. Plus, you’ll have a strategy for toning up, losing weight, or another goal.

5. Join a class

The camaraderie of group workouts is a fantastic way to combat nerves and boost your confidence at the same time. Most gyms have a variety of classes available, so you can choose a group that matches your interests, talents, and fitness levels.

As you begin to get to know other members, you’ll soon shake off any feelings of anxiety. You might make new friends too!

Call in advance to find out the social distancing rules so you’re totally prepared. Otherwise, you risk being surprised by something, and that can affect your confidence.

Getting over being self-conscious at the gym

Even if you feel apprehensive at first, the right approach will ensure you love spending time at the gym. With support from staff and belief in yourself too, you can find your niche and begin to enjoy the time you spend lifting weights, burning calories, or swimming lengths.

12 thoughts on “Feeling self-conscious at the gym? 5 tips to feel more comfortable”

    1. Dancing is so much fun! Hopefully you will be able to start your membership on the other side of the pandemic. It’s tough to say when the gyms here will open up. I’m thankful for the many ways we can stay fit, but I miss the gym.

  1. Our gyms are open here but with lots of rules. I’m taking some time off. I can stay active and fit through the fall without the gym. I want to see how things go with COVID before exposing myself to more risk.

    1. That sounds like a great plan, Chris. My gym hasn’t reopened yet but, like you, when it does I will take time before heading back. I heard that my gym actually got purchased so it will have new policies and more, so I’ll be taking my time heading back. Wonder if my membership fees will change…

    2. Yes mine froze my membership fees too. But now they’re under new ownership so I’m not sure what’s going to happen! Glad you found a gym you like :)

    1. In California some gyms have been reopening with bizarre-looking plastic workout pods to enable customers to exercise in groups and remain social distancing. What I most regret is that everybody is wearing masks these days. I like looking at people’s faces.

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