Here we are just 6 days into January and lots of people are complaining on social media with "funny" memes about how packed the gym is in January. Yes, they are most definitely correct. The gym will be busier than usual at the beginning of the new year. We're all making goals and resolutions and just about everyone has some sort of goal to do with their physique. Wether its to lose weight, gain muscle, or tone up, the goal usually leads them to the gym.
But, rather than hating on the new folks, let's remember what it was like to walk into a gym for the first time. For me, it was terrifying. Walking into that first Body Pump class, I felt everyone was staring at me. I didn't know what I was doing. I felt frumpy and alone. I didn't dare make eye contact for fear of being sneered at. I'd like to think that most of these fears were all in my head, but I'll never know.
What I do know, is that it doesn't have to be that way. You don't want to be the reason why someone doesn't reach their fitness goals. Remember, you were once a newbie too. So, rather than complain, why not be welcoming. Why not be the reason someone does reach their fitness goals. Just a little welcoming smile or a few seconds to lend a helping hand could make the difference. That gesture could be what makes someone, who like me was terrified walking in, feel a little bit better about their decision.
If you're new to a gym, don't feel bad about it. Own it. Sure, you may not know how to use all the machines, but neither did they when they first started going. Don't let anyone make you feel bad for showing up. Better yet, prove them wrong. Show up again and again and again. Before you know it, you'll no longer be the newbie and you'll be the one offering a lending hand or friendly smile.
For those of us who have been going all year let's try this: See someone who's looking at a machine with doubt, give them a quick tutorial. The girl next to you at Body Pump looks scared, give her a reassuring smile. Not only will you be helping them, you'll also feel so much better about yourself :)