An Open Letter To Anyone Whose Resolutions Lead Them To The Gym
When it came time to make your resolutions for 2021, did fitness goals make the top of the list?
Yes? Honestly, good for you!
We all know the common trope is that the gyms are always packed in January and then start to trickle off in the following months thereafter but I think we don't really consider the reasons people stop going.
It's easy to be caught up in a "new year, new me" or a "fresh start" mindset; however, it takes a long time for things to just become a habit.
Also, life is unpredictable, you can start off super dedicated to going to the gym but when life gets in the way or you notice other important parts of your life have fallen to the wayside, the gym is something you can easily write off.
One of the main reasons, though, I think people quit going to the gym is because it's uncomfortable until you find your pace.
It's awkward showing up those first few times, not really having a clue where to start. There are people there who have been going for far longer and you feel like their eyes are glued to you, judging away. You're using muscles you are not used to using and it makes you more sore than you've probably been in a while!
Do any of these reasons to quit sound familiar?
If so, just know that as a fellow gym-newcomer, I totally get it! It is easy to say you want to be more fit in the new year, it is easy to sign up for a gym membership and go for the first time. What's not-so-easy is knowing what workouts to do, to not feel out-of-place and uncomfortable, to stick with it and make that time to take care of yourself.
However, as someone whose sister has been dedicated to fitness and the gym for years now, let me reassure you of a few things based on what she's told me:
- People are not judging as much as you think they are. Really they're focused the most on their own workouts
- It's okay to switch gyms until you find one you feel most comfortable at
- switching to a bigger one may actually feel better because you're further apart from other people
- The soreness is sometimes satisfying
- Taking whatever time you can to work on yourself feels really great in the long-run that you'll feel worse when you don't get to go to the gym than it ever does being sore the next day.
All in all, I know it's hard and nobody is in any place to judge you if you start off strong but the gym falls to the wayside...Who cares if you become one of "those people" who go in January and never go again? I mean, clearly enough people have done it if there is a whole stereotype based on it!
However, if you find your stamina waning and you do just want to quit, we are in this together! Keep going, keep taking care of yourself and walk in to that gym with all the confidence of someone who's been going for years. Don't be afraid to ask for help and definitely DON'T over-estimate your abilities too early on...that can be a quick route to disappointment resulting in you not wanting to go again.
In the words of Elle Woods, "“Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people don't kill their husbands."
So here's to being fit, being happy and not ending up on an episode of "Snapped" in 2021!
Still worried about "Gymtimidation" ease into working out at home! During the pandemic, plenty of free apps gave people the resources to get fit from the comforts of their own four walls: