An iron jungle filled with torturous looking equipment, the unmistakable smell of insecurity, B.O. and ego hanging thick in the air.
A gorilla pit of overly muscular men, far too fond of a tan bed, deep V, their reflection in a mirror and the word “china”.
Where the only thing louder than the bang of the dropping weights is the grunt of the alpha males dropping them.
The weight section of a gym can be a scary and intimidating place, especially to a female starting out on her strength training journey. But don’t let this scare you away! Here are some of my top tips you can use to make it out of there alive:
- Scout it out. Make sure you know the layout of the gym so it’s easy to navigate to find the equipment you want.
- Go in with a plan. Have your workout printed out or an e-copy on your cellphone.
- And always have a Plan B. Often times (especially during peak hours), gyms and gym equipment can be very busy- have an alternative option for any exercise so you’re not left waiting around.
- Research form. Make sure you know how to correctly perform the exercises. (YouTube videos have helped me a lot!)
- Dress comfortably and in something that makes you feel confident. Whether that’s a baggy T and tights or booty shorts and a crop top- do what works for you.
- Make sure to bring a sweat towel. No one likes using a machine that’s still sweaty from someone else! Gym etiquette goes a long way.
- Bring along some ear phones. Listening to some music while you workout helps you stay focused, motivated and distract you from any potentially intimidating feelings or unwanted advancements.
- A cap can help. It’s the adult form of “peekaboo”- if you can’t see them, they can’t see you (bonus- it’s a great way to hide a bad hair day!)
- Buddy up. There’s safety in numbers. Having a friend there with you can also help you push harder while training and keep you accountable in keeping your workouts consistent.
- Just have fun and do you. You’re there for yourself at the end of the day.