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I feel too embarrassed to go to the gym :( Watch

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    I know this will sound pretty silly but...

    I am an average weight girl who has never really done any serious exercise since I was a kid. I am so unfit that I cannot run any longer than about 3 minutes without having to slow to a walk. I am determined to change this and have joined the gym next door to my new flat.

    The problem is that I feel embarrassed at the prospect of demonstrating in front of all the healthy, fit gym-goers just what poor shape I am in. I don't know how to put together a workout that would be realistic for someone like me and as a result I feel quite intimidated by the idea of going to the gym for the first time.

    Does anyone have any advice for a very unfit first timer to make the whole thing a bit less scary? Thank you!
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    The way I think about it, is you are paying to use their equipment. All you're doing is going there, using the equipment you've paid to use, do your thing and get out of there. Ignore everyone else they should all be doing the same thing. Using headphones can help, just block out the world and focus 100% on what you're doing, do that, then go. Job done.
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    The reason a lot of people go to the gym is due to them being in the same situation as you. I've been in three gyms and all of them have had more unfit people trying to get fit compared to healthy/fit people. From someone that has trained a lot over the 3/4 years, I like seeing unfit people in the gym, at least they see that something is wrong and they're trying to alter their lifestyles for the better compared to the slobs that just sit at home.

    People seem to have the idea that the gym is filled with arrogant fitness snobs but it definitely isn't, some of the nicest people I have met I have met in the gym. It's not a scary place at all and I started going as soon as I turned 17 and was fine.
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    I always have immense respect for the clearly unhealthy guy in the gym who's all red in the face because he's working incredibly hard to change what he is. It's much more admirable than the skinny ****s that just stay in the corner doing bicep curls for the entire hour.

    There's nothing to be embarrassed about.
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    They were all in the same position as you. Not everyone who goes to the gym started out as a physical masterpiece. Trust me, they're more concerned with their own workout than to worry about what you're doing.

    The worst thing you could possibly do is go to the gym and show off, you'll just end up embarrassing yourself, and I know this from experience. Just take things slow, have a feel of all the machines and see what you're most comfortable with. The first couple of weeks will be just a trial/error anyway.

    If your gym is open 24/7, you can go at a later time when it's more empty just to dip your toes in the water.
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    (Original post by tibbles209)
    I know this will sound pretty silly but...

    I am an average weight girl who has never really done any serious exercise since I was a kid. I am so unfit that I cannot run any longer than about 3 minutes without having to slow to a walk. I am determined to change this and have joined the gym next door to my new flat.

    The problem is that I feel embarrassed at the prospect of demonstrating in front of all the healthy, fit gym-goers just what poor shape I am in. I don't know how to put together a workout that would be realistic for someone like me and as a result I feel quite intimidated by the idea of going to the gym for the first time.

    Does anyone have any advice for a very unfit first timer to make the whole thing a bit less scary? Thank you!
    Most gyms offer a free one-on-one with a member of floor staff on your first visit, to show you the equipment and write out a starting workout - have you enquired about that?

    Other than that, don't worry. People may feel superior to you, but they'll only feel better about themselves, and not look down on you. Seriously, people couldn't care less. They may even respect you for going, if you look like you're making an effort!
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    Felt exacty the same as you last year. Literally, LOTS OF PEOPLE AT THE GYM ARE UNFIT. you'll get the odd very toned lady, the groupie bunch of weight lifters (no offense to you lot, its very impressive :P) but generally its just normal sweaty folk all at varying levels.

    If you're embarassed, start slow. Walk on treadmill for ten minutes. Next ten minutes, walk at a steeper gradient (you know how you can make the rolling platform steeper, like a hill?). Then try jogging at no gradient (flat) for 2 minutes. Then walk flat for 5 to cool down.

    It will give you a basic workout. Increase the numbers as you start getting fitter and finding this easier.

    Also, elipticals are great- they're surprisingly easy to just get on and use, you cant really embarrass yourself on them (which I learnt is always great when I rolly-pollied off my treadmill) and you work lots of muscles. And even if you go on it for 15 minutes its actually quite effective.

    Good luck
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    Go with friends. A fatter, unhealthier friend preferably to make you look better.
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    The gym I go has far more 'unhealthy' people than the 'jocks'. At this gym everyone has their iPods in and is just doing their individual things. The only real interactions I have with people are asking how long someone will be using a machine really. So that seems to be the only time anyone shows any real interest in other people is when they're using a common machine.

    You have nothing to be embarrassed about, and as highlighted above nobody really notices anyone else; or as other posters have said they admire those who are giving their all in the gym.

    Good luck with your fitness endeavors
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    You gotta start somewhere.
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    Like most people have said here, the gym is actually more full of unfit people than fit people. When I started, I was skinny and imagined the gym to be full of bodybuilders, but there are rarely any there! No-one judges anyone else, and most people are fully focused on their own workout.

    Someone once asked me when I first went there "How much did you focus on other people?" To which I replied "not at all"; I was too busy focusing on what I was doing - no-one cares what anyone else is doing. There's no need to feel intimidated.
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    (Original post by Fat-Love)
    I always have immense respect for the clearly unhealthy guy in the gym who's all red in the face because he's working incredibly hard to change what he is. It's much more admirable than the skinny ****s that just stay in the corner doing bicep curls for the entire hour.

    There's nothing to be embarrassed about.
    +1

    There is nothing worse than the guys that walk about with massive biceps and underdeveloped chests, wearing plimsolls and talking about "Smashing Birds" and "Daftys" while the drink protein shakes.

    I have respect for anyone that goes to the gym, for whatever reason.
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    (Original post by tibbles209)
    I know this will sound pretty silly but...

    I am an average weight girl who has never really done any serious exercise since I was a kid. I am so unfit that I cannot run any longer than about 3 minutes without having to slow to a walk. I am determined to change this and have joined the gym next door to my new flat.

    The problem is that I feel embarrassed at the prospect of demonstrating in front of all the healthy, fit gym-goers just what poor shape I am in. I don't know how to put together a workout that would be realistic for someone like me and as a result I feel quite intimidated by the idea of going to the gym for the first time.

    Does anyone have any advice for a very unfit first timer to make the whole thing a bit less scary? Thank you!

    I joined my local-ish gym in October (easyGym in Slough) in an effort to get bigger lol. The point of getting a gym membership and going there is to become healthier and get in better shape - the fact you're paying for it should be an incentive to go. Whenever I go there are just as many, if not more, 'unhealthy' people there working out alongside the fitter, more muscular people. All they want to do is get their bodies in better shape, that's what the gym's for. Honestly, from my experience at the gym, nobody cares what the other person does - exercising/working out is different for everyone. The main reason is because of you want to achieve. The muscular people tend to want to get bigger so they'll push more weight. The more unfit/less muscular people will want to lose weight/fat and tone up or get bigger. Plus, nobody (and I literally mean nobody) will care what the other person in the gym does - I've seen people who don't even do the exercises correctly but no one says anything to them. People in the gym are pretty mature and so I really wouldn't worry about the other people. They're all focusing on what they want to do and it doesn't help them if they observe someone else. When I started I did feel slightly intimidated and out of place but it's fine when you go a few times

    Plus, at least they're making an effort to get into shape. Going to the gym, or even working out at all, requires dedication.
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    Thank you guys You've made me feel a bit better about going... any tips about what would be a good starting workout for a newbie trying to get a bit fitter?
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    Maybe start by jogging a bit every day and then I'd try HIIT (high-intensity interval training), always been a personal favourite when I'm feeling unfit. Maybe someone else will be able to link you to decent websites/workouts. I'd recommend this sticky at the top of the fitness forum to get a good idea.

    If you're feeling really unfit maybe start with the NHS couch to 5k programme. (Link)
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    (Original post by tibbles209)
    I know this will sound pretty silly but...

    I am an average weight girl who has never really done any serious exercise since I was a kid. I am so unfit that I cannot run any longer than about 3 minutes without having to slow to a walk. I am determined to change this and have joined the gym next door to my new flat.

    The problem is that I feel embarrassed at the prospect of demonstrating in front of all the healthy, fit gym-goers just what poor shape I am in. I don't know how to put together a workout that would be realistic for someone like me and as a result I feel quite intimidated by the idea of going to the gym for the first time.

    Does anyone have any advice for a very unfit first timer to make the whole thing a bit less scary? Thank you!
    Just imagine the really skinny uber fit girl on the treadmill as a girl who used to be clinically obese and made a change for the better. Imagine the guy easily managing to lift his body weight with barbells as a skinny, non-confident guy who likewise decided to change his body to make himself happier. The people you see in the gym, are less likely to judge you because the majority of them know how hard it is to change.

    About 80% of regular gym go-ers will have been in exactly the same position you are in now, i.e. being unfit and uncomfortable in their own skin, but as you see in many gyms - most people are fit. Why? Because they did something about it! I go to my uni gym, and although there are a lot of men just hanging around in the weight room being posers watching girls do yoga and a lot of stupid girls dawdling on the treadmills on their iphone talking about who they screwed the night before, on the whole, most people just want to work out. They don't care if you're an Olympic athlete or a 20 stone computer nerd, like you they just want to work out and be done with it.

    My advice to you would be to take an ipod or MP3 player and just get lost in your music. Focus on that, (or a film on your phone, reading a book, listen to the radio etc) and only that and pedal to the metal! Work as hard as you can and concentrate on you. My first gym session was awful, I kept thinking people were looking at me because I'm unfit but nobody was; I was paranoid. The next time I went, and didn't look up at all, I focused on my music and time passed by quickly so it was a much more enjoyable experience.

    Hope this helps, and good luck with improving your fitness come 2013! I know I will trying to do this too hehe! x
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    Everyone in the gym goes there to change their body, they're not happy with it!
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    You haven't quite hit rock bottom yet. When you do, you'll have tunnel vision and won't care about other people. You'll be too embarrassed with yourself to waste any energy thinking about what other people think. Their opinions will be the least of your worries (in reality they probably don't even notice you so you're sort of delusional).
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    (Original post by tibbles209)
    I know this will sound pretty silly but...

    I am an average weight girl who has never really done any serious exercise since I was a kid. I am so unfit that I cannot run any longer than about 3 minutes without having to slow to a walk. I am determined to change this and have joined the gym next door to my new flat.

    The problem is that I feel embarrassed at the prospect of demonstrating in front of all the healthy, fit gym-goers just what poor shape I am in. I don't know how to put together a workout that would be realistic for someone like me and as a result I feel quite intimidated by the idea of going to the gym for the first time.

    Does anyone have any advice for a very unfit first timer to make the whole thing a bit less scary? Thank you!
    First of all, go you for doing something about it! You should be really proud that you're taking that decision to change.

    Everyone feels really clumsy and self-conscious and out-of-place when they first walk into a gym, it's completely natural. What you have to remember is that everyone in the room had to start at exactly the same place you did. 99% of them will be friendly and helpful (ignore the other 1% who are arrogant / plain weird, there aren't that many of them, so just laugh it off!).

    As a couple of people have already mentioned, everyone admires the unfit people who are working their butts off to change!

    The first time I went to the gym was AWKWARD. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, tripped on the treadmill, accidently set the weights too high on one of the machines and like squeaked when I realised I couldn't lift it (cue everyone turning around to stare at me and the trainer guy running over to help me), put my stuff in the wrong place, couldn't work the cross-trainer... Aghr. Utter embarrassment. :rolleyes: But I kept going back and it was fine! By the end I knew my way round perfectly, knew how to work stuff, and all was good.

    I'm actually back in your shoes now, due to a number of health and other reasons I haven't been to the gym in 2-3 years, so I feel as though I'm right back where I started, EEEK. But this thread has actually really motivated me to get back to the gym! So good luck!
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    (Original post by Deshi)
    The reason a lot of people go to the gym is due to them being in the same situation as you. I've been in three gyms and all of them have had more unfit people trying to get fit compared to healthy/fit people. From someone that has trained a lot over the 3/4 years, I like seeing unfit people in the gym, at least they see that something is wrong and they're trying to alter their lifestyles for the better compared to the slobs that just sit at home.

    People seem to have the idea that the gym is filled with arrogant fitness snobs but it definitely isn't, some of the nicest people I have met I have met in the gym. It's not a scary place at all and I started going as soon as I turned 17 and was fine.
    You've got great taste in women!

    ...

    Oh yeah and I agree with your post.
 
 
 
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