Exercise can be a scary thing for a huge number of people. Worse still, when you're suffering from gym anxiety. There are countless reasons for it, and it's really something that we at Exercise.co.uk want to change. Exercising is a pivotal way to live a healthy and happy lifestyle, and it comes in so many shapes and sizes that there is something for everyone. We're here to help you fight the exercise fear and jump into something you love!

The Issue

Woman with gym anxiety

Before we start, let’s take a look at some of the more common reasons people don’t like to exercise or develop gym anxiety, and the explanations behind them so we can put them to bed for good!

Embarrassment

This one is one of the most common, but one of the best to overcome too. A vast number of people are intimidated to exercise because of how they feel they stack up to other people. On a track, class or at the gym, there are always other people involved. Worrying about them being fitter or stronger than you is just a vicious circle if it gets the better of you.

That's usually fuelling the fire for people who aren't confident in themselves, their bodies or their abilities. This lack of confidence or comfort is what we need to change. Everyone started from somewhere, no matter how fit they are. Picking up the ropes is often a lot easier after you take the plunge for the first time. There are a number of ways to do it, which we’ll get on to, but you are not alone.

Lack of knowledge – where to start

Another big factor of fighting the exercise fear and beating that gym anxiety is knowing where to start. Knowing how to exercise is half the battle, after all. Not knowing what you should be doing or how is off-putting for everyone. No one wants to be doing something dangerous or wrong, especially in front of people, and that's understandable.

The best way to beat it? Practise and do your homework. It's often good to try a class or train with a friend to help get you on the right track, or just watch videos and read articles to make sure you're doing the right thing. There are a lot of resources out there to help you on your way. Exercising at home is a great way to get the ball rolling too.

Fear of the unknown – new things

The last thing we’ll look at is the fear of the unknown. Too many of us are too quick to shrug off exercise because it’s not something we’re used to. It’s understandable, and it’s easy to do. That’s one of the main reasons to beat it!

When you do start exercising, you'll be amazed at all of the benefits it offers you and how good you feel about doing it! No one walked into the gym knowing everything already. Like everything in life, people are always learning and doing new things. That’s the only way to progress. Take the leap when and however you can.

 

Ways to fight

Group of people walking together

So those are the problems, but what are the solutions to fight the exercise fear and conquer your gym anxiety? Well, there are a lot. More than you think too!

Types of Exercise

First of all, the most important thing to look at is different types of exercise. Most people go straight to looking at the gym, and that doesn’t have to be the case. The gym does offer you a specialised place to exercise, don’t get us wrong, and for cardio and weight training, it's great. With that being said, it’s not for everyone!

Why not try taking a walk a few days a week to get things moving. Go for a bike ride or a jog. Try a new sport, even just playing with friends. A yoga or Zumba class? Give it a go! There really is more than you know, especially with home gym equipment too. Find what YOU like, not what other people do.

Plan and Schedule

Another awesome thing that you can do is to plan and schedule ahead of time. Planning is a great way to fight the exercise fear because it helps you to prepare yourself. You know what you're doing and when, and it takes away a lot of the uncertainty you might have. That's awesome for you.

It also means you know when you should and shouldn’t be going, and when the results will be taking effect! Don’t make it control your life but do try and stick to it!

Make it fun

One other great way to get stuck in and start exercising is to make exercising fun. There are a lot of ways you can do it like playing games or team activities, but making it social is great too.

Try out a workout group or class, whether it’s in the gym or a walking group in your area. Whatever takes your fancy. Workout buddies are an awesome way to push yourself too. Being in it together makes thing a lot easier and relieves so much pressure.

 

There's a lot more to it than you might think, and it's a problem that you can tackle with the right mindset. Do whatever you're the most comfortable with, and work from there. Exercise shouldn't be a nightmare for you, and it only gets easier once you get the ball rolling.

Take a look at our tips to build confidence for more ideas, and try your best to find your feel good! That's the secret to being #FitForYou after all!

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Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. Exercise.co.uk assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.

If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.