Have you ever gone to the gym, only to get there, take a look around, then a quick look in the mirror, and depart the premises faster than you came in?

With 2011 behind us, many people’s new year’s resolutions are to get in shape, drop some weight,  and get fit.  That said, many of us have neglected our bodies for quite some time, and are rather embarrassed with how we look into the mirror. We can’t let the embarrassment we may have for ourselves, overtake the drive we have to get into shape.

In the many years I have been going to the gym, I have passed through the entrance wearing many body types.  From overweight to thin, to somewhere in-between, I’ve worn them all.  The motivation to get the body we want, is what first drove us to drive to the gym, or to begin our workout in the first place.  That drive/motivation, is what you need to maintain to continue overcoming any embarrassment you may have.  One of the best tools I’ve found to help keep my mind from constantly thinking about what other people are doing or saying, is a simple pair of headphones.  Sometimes I’ll use my phone, others my iPod, but listening to music while I’m working out has both a calming effect on my nerves, and also serves to keep me in the correct mindset.

In a previous post, I wrote on how motivation is extremely important when working out or starting a new routine.  See the post, Motivation is Important from August 2011.  2012 is a new year, and another chance for you to change your life.

Here are a few tips to help boost your self-confidence:

  • Gym Selection – If you are skeptical about going to your local big-box gym, for fear of what others might say or do, skip the big-box place in favor of a gym that fits your lifestyle.  Curves and Lucille Roberts are great places, which cater to women only, so you don’t have to worry about a plethora of guys starting at you.  Small, local gyms are a great option for men, who aren’t ready to join the larger, more crowded gyms like Fitworks or Urban Active
  • Proper Clothing – If you have features you are proud of, show them off!  If you have great shoulders, wear a racer-back sports bra or top.  If you have nice, toned legs, wear form fitting yoga pants.  If you want to be more covered, wear looser fitting yoga pants, and a matching top, or basketball shorts and a new t-shirt.  Just because you are at the gym, doesn’t mean you have to invest in form fitting under-armor or Nike clothing
  • Bring a Friend – Statistics show people achieve a much higher degree of success at the gym when they workout with a partner, instead of alone.  Having a friend with you, will help put your mind at ease, and distract you from the other people who are in the gym.  It will keep you focused on what you are doing, and keep you engaged in the workout, pushing to meet or beat your partners results.  We all have a competitive nature to us, why not exploit it at the gym where it can make a difference.