I’m not sure if you’ve noticed or not, but I’ve been stepping out of my comfort zone a little lately with fitness and exercise.
It was scary, but you know what? It has made me feel so much more confident in the gym, it’s given me determination and it’s made me feel proud to have done something that originally would have scared me.
Looking back, I know I what was scaring me now.
It was the unknown.
Scared of looking stupid, scared of having to talk to strangers, scared of not knowing if I could get through a task or class without getting too tired.
It first started with running almost 3 years ago.
I wanted to start running and exercising, but the whole thing seemed really silly.
People will see me. People on the street. People in cars. They will see me and I’ll look like an idiot. Then I’ll get out of breath and stop and look like even more of an idiot.
I decided to just go for it. It wasn’t half bad, you know. After a few runs, I loved it. I didn’t even notice those around me and if I did, I used it as motivation to keep going or to pick up my pace.
Then I stopped caring about if I needed to stop, or if another runner over took me. I would tell myself it didn’t matter. After all, they didn’t know how long I had ran for. They might be doing a fast paced 2 miles for all I knew, then there’s me, who could have been training for a marathon slogging out 18 miles at a slower pace for all they knew. If they even cared. Which they probably didn’t.
Next came the gym. I never thought I’d sign up for a gym on my own and go. It happened when I was given an opportunity to have a free pass for a few weeks for the #FitnessRevolution challenge. I had to go and sign up on my own.
It was scary at first, but I’m glad I did it as I loved going to the gym and doing a different variety of workouts. I was previously working out at home or running, so this helped me mix things up a bit.
When my free membership was over, I still wanted to go to the gym, so I signed up for one near by. That closed this summer, so I quickly signed up to the brand new Pure Gym that was opening right down the road from me.
My next major defeat was going to a class at the gym.
I used to always see the classes going on and want to be a part of it, but I was scared that everyone would know each other and I’d be the odd one out, or I wouldn’t be able to keep up with the class, or I wouldn’t know what I was doing and again, everyone would think I was an idiot. I sucked it up and finally went to my first spin class. I loved it so much I went back again and again, then I tried a step class and a pump class.
So here are some of my tips for stepping out of your comfort zone when it comes to fitness.
- Just go for it, with an open mind. It’s not as scary as you think and people aren’t judging you!
- There are many resources online – read up on the activity you want to do.
- Search YouTube for a visual of what you’re wanting to do, especially if it’s a class so you can see what type of moves you will be doing.
- Know your limits – again for classes, it’s a great idea to have an idea of your strength and how much you can lift so you don’t crash and burn.
- Do it as early in the day as possible so you have less time to over think it and back out.
- Take a friend for comfort.
- Look up articles on how to be more confident and step out of your comfort zone. Even if you think you know the advice already, but just struggle to apply it, the pep talk is always good!
- Imagine the benefits of doing the thing you’re afraid of.
- Think of how great you will feel at the end.
While I’m still a bit nervous about stepping out of my comfort zone in some ways, I am much more likely to do it now. After doing so a lot over the last year, it’s taught me that it’s never as a bad as it seems!