Being a gym noob sucks.
You don’t know what you’re doing.
You’re in an unfamiliar environment.
And you stick out like a sore thumb… or so you think.
The truth is being a gym noob isn’t so bad — after all, everyone starts out as a gym noob at some point.
To help you avoid looking and feeling like an idiot when you’re new to the gym, I’m going to share the key mindset principles every gym noob needs to start getting results quickly.
Forget About What You Think Others Are Thinking
Your first time going to the gym can be an intimidating experience.
There are several common scenarios for gym noobs.
You might be super scrawny or very overweight — either way, you’re out of shape, and it shows.
When you show up to the gym, you’re expecting people to stare at you like “What are they doing here?!”.
The truth is unless you’re doing something obnoxious to attract a lot of attention to yourself, most people won’t even pay much attention to you at all.
We all started as weak, out-of-shape gym noobs.
The only people who are going to judge you are the people who judge everyone, regardless of their fitness level. You can’t do anything about that.
However, most gym goers are going to be happy for you and supportive of your decision to get into fitness.
The gym environment can be intense, but that’s because we’re focused on getting results. The gym isn’t nearly as intimidating as you might think it is.
Most gyms are some of the warmest, friendliest, and most supportive environments you can possibly be a part of.
The key is to focus on your game plan and getting your results.
Don’t worry about what other people are doing and get after it!
Focus on the Fundamentals
If you want to get results quickly, whether that’s losing weight or building muscle, you need to master the fundamental movements.
The fundamentals include:
- Bench press
- Overhead press
- Barbell row
- Push ups
These are the movements that get results quickly. The catch is that they are also the most difficult to learn.
Whenever I see a gym noob who is focusing on learning these basic movements, I immediately have a higher level of respect for them.
It shows that either they have a friend or relative guiding them, they have a trainer, or they’ve done their homework — either way, they’re serious about getting results.
Related article: The Best Beginner’s Workout Plan
Some people simply don’t have the knowledge of which exercises to do when they get started. However, most gym noobs don’t focus on the fundamentals because of another problem…
They can’t leave their ego at the door. They just can’t stand to be seen lifting lighter weights.
Start Low with the Weights
One of the main insecurities of gym noobs, especially guys, is lifting low amounts of weight at first.
When I first started working out, I started benching with the barbell and a 5-pound plate on each side, and it felt challenging.
It sucked at first, but little by little I increased the weight to a respectable amount.
As a gym noob, it’s important to be patient and start with lighter weights that allow you to master your form.
It can be tempting to throw as much weight as possible on the bar, but that’s the quickest way to get yourself injured.
The sooner you get the form down for the fundamental movements, the faster you will make progress because you will be more comfortable with the exercise.
We all had to start with light weights, so don’t get hung up on trying to outlift everyone during your first week (or year) in the gym.
Ask for Help
The gym is one of the best places to ask for help.
It’s one thing to watch a video online or read a fitness article, but they aren’t always as useful as getting advice from someone who can show you what to do in-person and provide personalized feedback.
If you’ve done everything I just mentioned, you will be a prime candidate for help from a gym veteran.
We don’t like to stop what we’re doing to give someone pointers unless we think they’re actually going to use the advice.
By starting low on the weights and focusing on the fundamentals, we know you’re serious and are more than happy to help any way we can.
However, you want to be respectful of others when you ask for help.
Try not to interrupt someone, especially when they’re in the middle of a set — that’s annoying.
Simply wait for a time when they’re getting a drink, using their phone, or resting between sets.
Getting in shape is a lot of work, but it’s also a lot of fun.
Being new to the gym is nothing to worry about, and you definitely shouldn’t let it stop you from working out altogether.
Use the Gym Noob Mindset and…
- Forget about what you think others are thinking
- Focus on the fundamentals
- Start low with the weights
- Ask for help
Best of luck to you!
If you have any other questions or concerns about joining a gym, leave me a comment below, and I’ll help you out as best as I can.
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What do you think? Do you agree, disagree or have any thoughts to add? Let me know in the comments below.
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