Tips for feeling confident in the gym
I am always stressing the importance of lifting weights to achieve the best body composition results, rather than slaving away on the cross trainer counting down the seconds until it’s over. Don’t get me wrong, cardio certainly has its place, especially in regards to fat loss, but I want to empower both women and men to realise that there is a much more efficient and enjoyable way of doing things.
My whole approach to health and fitness changed when I started lifting (heavy) weights consistently. However I do know a lot of people suffer with lack of confidence and are too scared or nervous to enter the weights section of the gym; which to them is equivalent to entering a lion’s den. The main concern I hear is ‘I am worried that I will look stupid and people will laugh at me.’ But there are plenty of others:
“I have no idea what I am doing.
Won’t weights make me bulky?
I don’t know which exercises are best.
I don’t know how to set the machines up.
What are sets and reps? How many should I be doing?”
This is just a quick blog post with some useful tips to help conquer these fears so that you can start to feel more confident and assured when entering the gym and kick some ass in that weights section!
Ask for help
If you have never lifted weights before and have no idea where to start, then the absolute best thing you can do is approach a member of staff at the gym and ask for some help. They will be more than happy to show you how to do certain exercises, how machines work, how to set up benches, what the correct lifting technique is and they may even come up with a workout plan for you. Ultimately it is their job to answer any questions or queries that you may have so use their knowledge!
Have a plan
Once you have learnt the basics, make sure that you have a programme to follow rather than skipping about from machine to machine, with no idea of what reps or how many sets you are doing. Invest in a little notebook where you can write things down. By having a set plan of what you are going to do before entering the gym, you will feel more confident in what you are going there to achieve and you can prepare yourself so that you aren’t getting flustered! You will also feel a lot more accomplished at the end of your workout. Having a programme to follow will also allow you to see progression over time.
There are tons of free resources on the internet which you can use. Websites like www.bodybuilding.com are a great starting point if you are short on idea. Or invest some money in Personal Trainer who can show you what to do and why, and stop you from spinning your wheels for months on end! Skip a couple of nights out in favour of this investment and you are much more likely to see the results you want in less time.
Constant and consistent progression = results.
Wear something you feel comfortable and confident in.
I always find that I have a better workout when I like what I am wearing! Be it a favourite pair of leggings or some bright trainers, if I feel confident in my outfit then I feel more confident in myself. This applies to you outside the gym on a day to day basis, so why not inside the gym too?
So I encourage you to pick up some items of clothing which you actually like the look of, rather than turning up in an old baggy t-shirt, holey leggings and trainers which have seen better days! It is one of the reasons I justify buying new items way more than I should….well that’s what I tell my Mum!
Good gym playlist
Set yourself up with a new music playlist with all your favourite songs. Subscribing to Spotify Premium has been one of the best decisions I have made in recent months. I now don’t find myself wasting time skipping through songs, or finding something to listen to during my workouts. You won’t see me working out without my Beats by Dre on that’s for sure! Once my headphones are on, I am completely in the zone for the next hour or so, almost like an imaginary ‘do not disturb sign’! I wrote a blog post on it recently if you want to check it out!
Don’t worry about other people
Okay, there’s no need to be rude with this one, but you are at the gym to focus on bettering yourself, so try and ignore what other people are doing or what they might be thinking. The chances are that they are too busy worrying about themselves to look at what you’re doing! And if you do find somebody looking over, it is more likely that they are admiring you for working so hard! I have made lots of friends at the gym through asking for advice, offering advice, congratulating them or just simply saying hello!
Be open-minded, everyone is at the gym to better themselves so there’s at least one common interest!
If there is anything which you think I have missed out then let me know in the comments down below and I will look to address it! Good luck!
Love Abi xxxx
January Blog a Day 13/31