It is no surprise that a lot of people are intimidated by the gym…especially if they are overweight and/or don’t know what they are doing.
This is very common. I have had people literally trembling the first time I meet them.
They are unsure if they can do the exercises and are afraid of embarrassing themselves in front of others.
Here is what you have to understand.
Almost everyone is rooting for you to succeed. In fact the more weight you have to lose the more people are wanting you to succeed.
It’s my largest clients that people in the gym are most friendly to and try to make friends with.
One of my biggest clients at the moment is a 45 year old woman that started at 380 and went down to 290 in 4 months.
She told me that the first day she came to the gym she walked up to the door and almost turned around and went home because she was scared.
She’s like, “thank god I didn’t do that!”
Now she comes on her days off to do the treadmill and has made many friends in the gym.
The gym regulars are extra friendly to her.
She took a few weeks off recently and I had at least 4 people ask about her and where she was with concern for her.
Of course you might get the odd person who will say something negative but this is extremely rare. In fact over the 20 years I have been training I have only heard of a few stories. Generally people are rooting for you or really don’t care as they are too busy with themselves.
I however would recommend trying to find a smaller local community gym instead of the big commercial places though. Usually the smaller gyms are way less intimidating and have less gym douches as I like to call them.
These are the people that will make remarks or give looks. Usually hang around in groups and are loud, obnoxious, and annoying.
Another reason people are intimidated is that they don’t know what they are doing and don’t think they will be able to do it and feel embarrassed or whatever.
This can happen if they are not given the right exercises to start off with.
My goal when people first start to train is to start them off very slowly with very easy exercises that they will be able to do. Then slowly ramp up. Never give exercises that are too difficult or require a lot of coordination.
This is the key to building their confidence and keep them coming back for more.
Nothing will make a person quit or give up faster than giving them a bunch of stuff they can’t do and making them look/feel stupid or embarrassed.
Remember: start of slow and easy and watch your confidence grow! Everyone in the gym was in your shoes at one time or another and 99.9% are rooting for you to succeed!