Have you ever heard someone say that they were too pathetic to exercise? Okay, maybe they don’t say it in those specific words. Maybe they say something more along the lines of, “I need to lose weight before I go to the gym.” or “I need to be stronger”, or “I’ll look silly on that weight machine”. We all make our excuses of why we can’t go the gym. I have been there. I still am not that comfortable going to the gym to lift weights. I am still getting used to using some of the weight machines and feel like it’s obvious that I am a newbie when it comes to using them. Whatever your insecurities about why you can’t go work out in public, there are some important things to remember.
We aren’t choosing to become healthier or stronger for other’s benefit. We are doing it for ourselves. To have other people’s perception of us prevent us from obtaining those goals is really just…. silly. If your goal is to complete a 1-mile run without stopping for the first time, then why would you stop short of doing that just because someone running past you is running a marathon. Don’t worry about everyone else. No matter what you do, you aren’t going to make everyone happy. There are always trolls out there willing to belittle you for being to fat, or skinny, or tall, or weird. So keep them out of the equation, and only worry about you reason for the goal in the first place. Truth is though, most people at the gym show more respect than trolls on the internet.
You can only do what you are capable of. You wouldn’t expect a preschool kid to be able to pick up a novel and read it. It takes time for that child to learn letters, blending, sight words, and reading in general. It takes time and lots of practice. This applies to us with being new at the gym. Don’t expect yourself to be the perfect gym rat on day one at the gym. Be content with where you are at and where you plan to go. You need to start with the basics. Start with figuring out what workouts to do. Make sure that you learn the right techniques to do them and maximize your benefits. You will keep improving every day.
The important thing to focus on when you work out is to be honest with yourself. You know what your ability is. You know how far you can push yourself. If you are giving your workout your full effort and intensity, then YOU are the bad ass at the gym in that moment. It’s also important to mention that the same way we talk ourselves of not going to the gym, we talk ourselves into leaving before we are done. Don’t walk around the track a couple times and try to convince yourself you put in enough effort when you were supposed to run a mile. Give your workout the full intensity that you are able. Even though it doesn’t matter at all what they think, other people can see that you are working hard and will respect you for pushing yourself. So, if you’re really worried about what they think, prove to them how hard you work.
You shouldn’t be putting yourself in competition with people that have been going to the gym years before you. It doesn’t matter where you start, it matters what direction you’re heading. Picture your journey as a straight line between the lowest you’ve ever felt, to the best person you could ever be. You are somewhere in the middle of those two points. As long as you are heading in the direction of the best person you could be, you’re doing the right thing. Just focus more than anything at looking forward to that person, instead of looking back. I’ve said many times before that you aren’t in competition with anyone but yourself.
Really there is no reason to feel like you aren’t enough to be able to become more. Honestly, that kind of reasoning is really counter intuitive. We all have the ability to become better. We just need to remember that we are enough. We don’t need to become something more to be able to achieve more. We know the reason why we want to achieve these goals. We know we have the ability to make it to the gym and work towards improvement. We know we have to work hard to achieve the goals that we have. And we know that we have to put in the work to be able to make progress.
Keep working towards those goals. Every day is a new day, with new accomplishments that we can make. Remember how strong you are and how much further that you can go. Remember what it is you want and how to keep fighting for it.