If you can figure out what is causing you to feel anxious about attending your local gym, you can uncover the problem that needs a solution. You may have trouble naming what is precisely causing you stress. All you may be able to come up with is that you feel anxious. Labeling your level of gym anxiety is an essential step in overcoming the issue. It is also helpful in pinpointing how you think. The distress thermometer, also known as a Subjective Units of Distress Scale, helps build your emotional vocabulary and increase your self-awareness.
Pick an emotion that you are feeling, beginning with the one you can easily identify. Give it a number one through 10, ranging in how well you can manage this emotion from little anxiety to a crisis. Describe how these emotions are impacting your body and what kind of thoughts you are having. Flush out the rest of your scale with other details, using similar scenarios to experience the same emotions. Your distress plan can help you figure out coping strategies that will help you overcome your gym anxiety.
2. Know that avoidance often does not work in your favor.
Skipping out can be a tempting offer when you are not feeling the best. But once you miss one workout, it is easier to continue not going. Avoidance is trying to escape certain situations that are causing stress, but keeping away from it can only lead to additional stress. The negative impact not only restricts your life but also reinforces the fear. You may be relieved that you do not have to go to the gym. You can rationalize why, but you may come up with the same feeling the next time you think you want to start your exercise routine.
How to deal with feeling like you want to avoid going to the gym starts with recognizing the problem and developing coping skills. You can learn several different techniques to help you manage those feelings. Some of those techniques include tracking your emotions, initiating deep breathing exercises, and using cognitive restructuring. You can learn more about these plans by reading self-help books or through your primary care physician’s advice.
1. Understand that you are making a positive lifestyle change by going to the gym.
It is a universal fact that exercise is good for you. There are several health benefits for your body and mind. Like Rome, results were not built in a day, and research has shown that slowly earned progress has more lasting effects than those through fad diets. Agreeing to add exercise is also a time commitment, and there is no better time than the present to get ready for a new way to live. If you feel anxious about attending the gym, you can overcome those negative thoughts by believing in what you could achieve.
Being healthy is a lifestyle change that you can make at any time. It is no tall order, and you would need to make it a priority, especially if you have long-term goals. Start small by devoting 20 minutes of your day to exercise and build from there. There is no better time than the present to take the first step toward a better and healthier lifestyle. No matter how you get there, you will be so glad you did. You may even forget why you ever thought you did not want to do it. Change doesn’t happen overnight. It didn’t work for me. But by understanding the root of what causes fear of the gym, you can turn exercise into an experience you relish instead of the one you dread.