“I’d work out but there’s too many people watching…I’m too self conscious to go to the gym…People are too fit and it scares me.”
If you ask my bestie Alisia how we met, she usually says “Oh I was the girl who watched Lyn work out from the elliptical.” I promise you she’s not creepy 😊
It’s pretty easy to let ourselves feel intimidated by others. We feel like all eyes are on us. Like people are questioning why we’re in a space. Maybe they’re judging us. Maybe we’re not enough. The thing is that life is full of judgements, but its not just at the gym. Its at Walmart, its how you deal with your kid melting down at the grocery store, your choice of sports teams, etc. The truth is that odds are someone IS watching at the gym and that’s not a bad thing. Hear me out!!!
Alisia was watching me and decided to try some classes, personal training and a challenge group. It also ended up forming a relationship that found the mac to my cheese (or the preworkout to my workout). We’ve watched our “intimidating meatheads” go high five new members for accomplishing something they’ve been working hard on. We have members come to us with tears because they’ve witnessed someone overcome a fear. I’ve seen our vets quietly explain a tweak in form or had someone just appear to spot me. We get these moments because someone WAS watching.
Maybe you’re one of the people who likes saying that we trainers don’t know how you feel… Well, guess what? I was an asthmatic high schooler who had to grab her inhaler after running a block. I was really aware of people watching. I carried that into adulthood. I joined the gym and I was Alisia. My treadmill was my safety bubble. I literally had never walked past the cardio section. I ran and watched some crazy German guy which ended up having me run 108kms because I watched and was inspired. While training, I was amazed by the members who would walk over to get me a towel, water refill, barf bucket or just a high five. Also, that crazy German guy will be the first to tell you that he walked into the gym a chubby kid with a desire to improve himself.
If I’m feeling stuck in a rut with my training or programming, I like to find a corner and just watch you. I see Clemmer and Mike be really excited to see each other…every…single…day. I see Luca being able to run faster and further because she’s worked hard to lose 100lbs. I listen to our grandmas talk about training for adventures like shark diving in Africa and climbing Kilimanjaro. I watch Harry Lines work through knee pain that would’ve caused saints to swear and instead he wants to truly know how others are. I watch buddies push each other in anticipation of earning pro cards on stage at their next body building competition. I watch and get motivated to be my very best. To train my hardest. To push you to your full potential.
New members watch us to learn just like kids watch adults. Vets watch us to learn just like our youth teach us how to do techy things! Learning, educating, encouraging, supporting. So family, keep watching and keep being someone others want to watch.