In this post, I’m going to talk about confidence in the gym. Being 18 stone and on a treadmill just didn’t sit well in my mind. I felt like everyone was looking at me. When your confidence levels are pretty low to begin with, walking through that door and right into the middle of the gym floor, (without so much as a whiff of mascara for confidence) I headed to that treadmill day after day, why? Because the thought of being stared at in the gym was slightly more comforting than the thought of being stared at by the innocent people just trying to live their lives and complete their daily commute, I could only imagine their view of my wobbly bottom crashing up and down the hills where I live as they sit frustrated in rush hour traffic. I wouldn’t have wished that upon anyone, so to the treadmill it was.
I started by walking. I felt ridiculous. But I kept at it. I then introduced some jogging intervals and before I knew it, I had completed the entire ‘running for weight loss’ app. That’s 8k in 50 minutes. It’s incredible how the insecurities I had felt when I started out on the treadmill had disappeared and I hadn’t even noticed because I was so driven to succeed this new task I had set myself. Before I knew it, I was running for miles, from my local hilly lanes, to the French Riviera. Wherever I was in the world, I would always pack my running gear. Once I even ran home from work- a whopping 16.2 miles because the tubes had planned to be on strike. It turns out that they called the strike off at the last minute- but I had planned my run and I had eaten well, so I did it anyway. This was a huge massive colossal achievement for me and I celebrated with a deep tissue massage the next day.
After I shook the insecure demons, nothing could stop me. My Personal trainer began to teach me the dead lifting techniques, if ever there was a time I needed confidence, now was the time. The positions felt so unnatural at first, and I had a bit of competition with my lack of coordination. Let’s just say that Adam has the patience of a saint. After going over and over the technique with a 13kg bar, I started to build the weight, 13kg bar with 2.5kg either side, slowly working up to 33Kg, not bad for a now small person. I did the same with my back, 20kg bar and slowly built the weight up to now 60kg. Yes, I now lift more than I weigh! My legs have gotten lean with the running, but have really defined due to the lifting and my middle tyre has completely disappeared. I can’t believe how much I love this part of my routine.
Those confidence demons have well and truly gone. These days I get thumbs up from other regular gym-goers who have watched my progress form the gym floor. Now the looks I get are out of respect. I get a lot of praise from the friendly faces at my gym, and I’m always surprised when they do comment, because I love this so much I feel like I have always done it, I’ve almost forgotten that I was once a lazy couch potato.
So no, again there is no easy quick fix solution to this feeling of complete humiliation when walking into the gym. What I can say from experience is that it’s not others making you feel this way, they probably aren’t even looking at you. Your confidence levels just need to blossom, and in time, that will happen naturally.
In my next edition, I will be focusing on my diet in detail, it’s changed as I have educated myself along this journey and I have some good snacking tips to share.