Health & Fitness

How to Beat Gym-Class Nerves

We’ve all experienced pre-workout jitters before. Whether it’s heading back to the gym after some time off or joining a new class, it’s normal to experience some anxiety before a workout.

It’s that self-conscious, confidence-vanishing feeling one experiences when facing a potentially intimidating experience at the gym. What if everyone else is better at the class than me? What if I can’t work the gym equipment properly?

Whatever your worries, you’re not alone. And most of the time you’ll find that the feeling dissolves once you start your workout.

To combat your nerves ahead of your session however, there are plenty of ways to ease your fears. Read on for our top tips to beat gym anxiety.

Come Prepared

If you’re nervous before joining a new gym or class, do your research! While most gyms and studios will provide you with necessary gear, there’s a chance that yours may not. And arriving without the correct equipment will just elevate your nerves even higher. At the very least, bring a cold bottle of water to stay hydrated during your workout.

Likewise, check what type of clothing is appropriate for any new classes you’re joining. Most classes will let you know ahead of time, so just check any information provided. For example, some classes require you to exercise in socks, so if this is the case you might want to choose a pair that isn’t too slippery.

If you’re planning to use gym equipment rather than hitting a class, there’s no harm in planning what you want to accomplish during your workout. That way, there’s no backing out even if you’re moving at snail’s pace compared to the gym regulars.

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If you’re unsure of anything, don’t be afraid to call the class or gym and ask. Having the right information at hand is the start to easing those pesky nerves!

Arrive Early

If you’re heading to a class, arriving early to settle in and to familiarize yourself with your surroundings is a good idea. Most classes recommend arriving around 15 minutes early, so you’ll find that you won’t be the only one arriving ahead of time.

Rushing in late when the class has already started is a sure-fire way to stress you out and worsen those nerves. Not only will all eyes be on you as you arrive late, but you’ll start the experience on a bad note for disrupting the session.

When you arrive early, you also have the chance to have a quick chat with your instructor to ask any questions or let them know that you’re a newcomer and might be feeling a little nervous. In most cases, your instructor will have some helpful tips to ease your worries.

Bring a Friend

Feeling really nervous? When gym anxiety gets the best of you, invite someone close that you know and trust to work out with you. When you bring a close friend or family member along, not only do you become more relaxed, but it’s also a lot more fun!

If you do happen to make some mistakes, you can face your insecurities with your friend and laugh about it, instead of worrying about it on your own.

Visit Off-Peak

Peak hours vary depending on the gym, so check online or ask at the front desk when the gym is generally busiest.

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If you head to the gym or a class during quieter times of the day, you may feel more comfortable as it means avoiding most of the hardcore gym junkies.

However, for some, they may feel that more attention may be drawn to them when there are fewer people around.  Plus, when the gym or a class is busier you can observe how people use certain equipment or how they perform in the class.

It depends on you and how you prefer to work.

Pay Attention

As your workout begins, it’s easy to become consumed by what’s happening around you. No matter how experienced or inexperienced others seem surrounding you, you need to stay focused on your routine or the instructor if you’re taking a class.

The more focused you are on yourself and the exercise, the less nervous you’ll be because you’ll be too consumed in your workout to compare yourself to others!

Concentrate on you and how great you’re doing instead of worrying what others think or how they’re performing.

If you need a distraction from the rest of the room during a gym sesh, plug in earphones and rock to some motivating tunes.

Ready to Hit the Gym?

When it comes to beating gym nerves, the main thing is that you believe in yourself! You are your only competition and comparing yourself to others around you won’t help you progress with your fitness goals.

Besides, the chances are that many people are in the same shoes as you, or at the very least have been in your position once before. Keep your goals in mind and stick with your fitness plans and before you know it those gym nerves will be a thing of the past.

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Need to plan a fitness practice? Here’s how to build your own gym routine and stick with it!

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