The Benefits of Dancercise

January 16, 2020

Written By Karah Rushing, Group Exercise Instructor

Feeling the need to relieve stress, burn calories, and have a great time? Come try a dancercise Group Ex class at LaHaye! Dancercise classes offered range from high intensity cardio classes, such as Zumba, Hip-Hop, and MixxedFit to classes more focused on building muscular strength, such as Barre Above. Here are some benefits shared by all Dancercise classes:

    They feature fun, upbeat music

    Here are some songs you will work out to if you come to my Barre Above class this semester:

    • “Year 3,000” and “Burnin’ Up” by the Jonas Brothers
    • “Turn Up the Music” from Lemonade Mouth
    • “Best Friend’s Brother” from Victorious
    • “Life is a Highway” by Rascal Flatts

    They build great friendships

    I know this from experience as my relationship with one of my best college friends began freshman year in Zumba classes. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to bring your friends so you can do the classes together!

    It’s a lot more relaxing than you might think

    Most Dancercise movements are simple and repetitive, allowing the mind to relax and focus on the previously mentioned music and friends instead of only concentrating on the workout.

    Each class benefits your body differently

    In Zumba you will be introduced to a variety of Latin styles and burn over 500 calories! In Barre Above you will be taught basic ballet movements and notice significant increases in full-body strength if you consistently attend and challenge yourself. Consistent attendance at MixxedFit and Hip-Hop classes is sure to increase your movement credibility the next time you find yourself having a dance-party with friends!

    So many benefits and nothing to lose! Check out our Group Ex Schedule to see which Dancercise classes work for you.

    Why You Should Invest In a Personal Trainer

    January 10, 2020

    Written By Erica Stogner, Fitness Coordinator

    My fitness journey began my sophomore year of high school when I was introduced to Beachbody’s P90X. This program instilled in me a love for exercise as I experienced increases in my health and fitness over that 90 day period. However, my at home workouts eventually became repetitive, boring, and unsuccessful in delivering results. I had to find something new. I eventually started going to the gym with my dad and joined him in his “old school” body building styled workouts. Let’s just say—this wasn’t my cup of tea. I was stuck with a love for exercise and how it made me feel, but I had no direction. That was enough for me to seek the help of a personal trainer, and I am so glad I did! You may already be motivated to exercise like I was but don’t know where to start. You might have a general idea of how to work out but have hit a plateau. Maybe you know all about fitness but lack the motivation to embark on or to continue in your fitness journey.

    No matter where you are at, a personal trainer may be just what you are looking for, and here is why:

      Personal Trainers are personally invested in your health and wellbeing.

      A good trainer is someone who not only has a passion for health and fitness but also has a passion for helping people! Becoming a qualified trainer requires individuals to sacrifice ample amounts of their time, money, and energy. Yet they easily make these sacrifices because YOU matter them. If you have a good trainer, you can be confident that you are receiving quality programming and advice because they put in the work necessary to provide the best service possible. They will pour their energy into each and every session to make sure you stay motivated every step of the way.

      Personal Trainers can help you do much more than just reach your fitness goals.

      While goal setting is a valuable and critical part of any training program, your fitness goals are not the only thing that your trainer cares about. A good trainer will also spend time helping you to frame a healthy mindset, create well-rounded and sustainable habits, and coach healthy behaviors both inside and outside of the gym. They have a desire to get you to the point where you no longer need them. They will educate you about form, technique, the why behind your workouts, and any other important information that will help you to feel confident about taking charge of your health and fitness even after your package has ended.

      Personal Trainers tailor a program just for YOU.

      There is no such thing as a “one size fits all” exercise program. A personal trainer will work with you to design a program that aligns with your goals, the way you respond to exercise, your likes, your dislikes, your schedule, and any other preferences and/or concerns you may have. You may have an end goal, but your trainer knows exactly how to design the map to get you there. Online programs, workout DVDs, and group exercise all have their place and benefits. However, nothing can beat a program that is designed with only you in mind.

      Interested in signing up? For January 14-17 we have a 20% discount on our Tier 1 Training Packages! For more information on our offerings, visit our website.

      New Year. New Decade. New Opportunities.

      January 6, 2020

      Written By Katrina Burgess, Aquatics Coordinator

      It’s the year 2020! Here at Recreation Centers, we have been looking forward to a brand new year with all of you.

      With each yearly ball drop, people set new resolutions for the days ahead. Let’s think about how many of these “resolutions” are actually seen through the next year and how many have been achieved. You in fact, may have experienced how your new year resolution starts out strong in January, but fades once February or March comes along. I want to challenge you to see your goals through to the year 2021. I personally believe that less goals in specific areas of your life is key to behave consistently and create lasting personal growth throughout your everyday experiences.

      In order to create lasting goals, I follow Dave Ramsey’s goal setting principle.

      1. The goal must be specific

      2. The goal must be measurable

      3. The goal must have a time limit

      4. The goal must be yours

      5. The goal must be in writing

      These goals do not need to be year-long goals, they can also be short-term or long-term goals within different areas of your life. Below are the seven categories I like to review when setting my goals each quarter of the year.

        Career

        Career goals can be as simple as finding your true passion, landing a job that feels like a dream, growing within your current position, creating or updating your application resources (resume, LinkedIn, portfolio, etc) or obtaining a raise or promotion. Remember to look toward the future.

        Financial

        Finance always has a wide range of obtainable goals. Have debt and need to pay it off? Create a short-term goal of a specific amount each month and a long-term goal of when you want it all to be paid off. Do you want to save an emergency fund? Maybe limit those Starbucks drinks you consistently pay for and save that cash instead. Remember that the goals must be determined by your own needs.

        Spiritual

        Even at a Christian university, it may be hard to feel close to Christ. Maybe your spiritual goal will be consistently reading the Bible, doing devotions, tithing, or finding a community of likeminded people. Remember, be specific.

        Physical

        I would love to know how many people have set the goal to have a six pack by Spring Break over the past 10 years. Hint, it’s honestly not very realistic! Remember to create long-term goals relating to your overall well-being, strength, or diet and focus on how you physically feel.

        Intellectual

        Intellectual goals may involve educational or professional learning outcomes. Graduating this year? Wanting to make the Dean’s List? All these are goals you can write down, even if you’re sure you’ll achieve them! Remember to make sure these goals are measureable and planned for the upcoming semester.

          Family

          Setting family goals may be difficult for you, and that is 100% okay. Family goals may involve calling a parent on the weekends, spending time with a sibling who’s in Lynchburg, or prioritizing your spouse after work. Remember that every person is different and all goals will be relevant to you as your own person.

          Social

          Social aspects differ depending on which season of life you are in. Maybe it means to learn how to say “no” to things that make you feel overwhelmed, or start saying “yes” because you know you need a strong community of friends and support. Remember to live a balanced life.

          What are you waiting for? Go write down your goals!

          ‘Tis the Season

          December 19, 2019

          Written By Lindsey Johnson, Marketing Employee

          It’s almost Christmas, and you know what that means! Time with family, lots of good food, and traditions!  There’s something so magical about this time of the year, and it’s important to soak in every moment of it. Here are some tradition ideas to get you in the holiday spirit!

            Pick and Decorate a Christmas Tree

            This may seem like a no brainer, but this can be a great way for families to bond and spend time together while doing something fun. If you don’t want to deal with the upkeep of a real Christmas tree this year, getting an artificial tree and decorating it can be just as fun! If you don’t already have an artificial tree to pull out of storage, going to the store and looking “your tree” can be a lot of fun as well. Next step—put on your favorite Christmas music playlist and get to decorating!

            Start an Ornament Collection

            When it comes to ornaments, there’s something special about buying them throughout the year and anticipating the day you finally can put them on the tree. Whether you traveled, graduated, got married, adopted a pet—all are good excuses to buy or make a special ornament symbolizing that memory!

            If you are on a budget, a fun Christmas tradition would be going to a craft store or Walmart and picking out a few things to make your own Ornaments! This can be a fun challenge to do with anyone at any age.

            Pickle Tradition

            This tradition may not be for every family, but it is SO entertaining—especially if you have a few siblings. How it works:

            Sometime before Dec. 25, a glass pickle ornament is hidden within the branches of the Christmas tree. Then, the first person to find the pickle on Christmas morning gets something special. Each family has their own takes on what “something special is”. For some it could be a gift card, money, or opening the first gift. The fun part is you can make this tradition your own by creating your own rules.

            The goal of this tradition is to bond the family over something silly while also avoiding the mad rush to the presents on Christmas morning and appreciating each one. Here is an Amazon link to a pickle ornament one if you want to try out this tradition for yourselves!

            Have a Cookie Exchange Party

            A cookie exchange party can be fun with family or friends, and it’s super simple. Every guest brings their favorite holiday cookies to share with the rest of the party guests. If you’re gearing up for your next Christmas party and aren’t sure what to take, here are some fun Christmas cookie recipe ideas that are sure to bring some holiday cheer!

            Gingerbread House Making Contest

            With their gumdrop roofs and candy cane fences, a gingerbread house can create a magical moment in time. Gather the generations for a day of decorating fun, whether you start from scratch (plan a weekend for this) or use a kit. Either way, the merry is in the making when it comes to this family project! Here are some tips if you are wanting to make one from scratch:

            • Use royal icing. It makes a great “glue” and looks pretty, too.
            • Get creative with candy—incorporate your family’s favorites and enjoy your edible creation that much more!
              • Snow: shredded coconut, powdered sugar, or mini marshmallows
              • Windows: peppermint discs, Lifesaver candies, or thin red licorice rope
              • Fencing: candy canes, pretzel rods, or rice crispy treats
              • Roofing: waffle or wafer cookies

            And that’s it! Those are some of our favorite Christmas traditions. If you happen to try any of these for the first time, make sure you tag us in a photo on any of our social media platforms @lureccenters!

            Merry Christmas, everyone!

            How to Stay Healthy During the Holidays

            December 14, 2019

            Written By Lindsey Johnson, Marketing Employee

            The Holidays are a good time for family, friends – and food. The food may be good for your taste buds, but not so much for your waistline. Looking at you pie, mashed potatoes, and endless amounts of gravy!

            A key to staying healthy during the holidays is to eat mindful, not mindless; so be a smart cookie and follow these steps to stay healthy during this holiday season:

              Eat Mindfully

              It can be extremely easy to overeat and fall into the well known “food coma”, which may sound exciting at first, but once you get there you know you’ve made some mistakes. To avoid this, try to eat slowly and allow yourself to truly enjoy your favorite holiday dishes. Since it takes around 20 minutes for your stomach’s “I’m full” signal to reach your brain, it is suggested to take a 10-minute break after your first helping of food. As for dessert, eat only a couple of your favorite dishes instead of sampling every option available.

              Stay Active

              Try to avoid sitting for long periods of time. Too much sitting can be hazardous to your health, and research shows that it’s important to get up for even just five minutes, every 30 to 60 minutes and doing light activity. Remember this when you’re watching football or playing board games! Some ideas to stay active are: playing with your pets or younger family members, going on a walk, or just pacing around the house.

              Stay Hydrated

              Water accounts for 60% of our body’s total weight, and we need to stay hydrated in order to maintain this ratio. Water is also necessary for several bodily functions, including maintaining our cell’s fluids and delivering nutrients. Your brain can also confuse thirst with hunger, so a large glass of water before a meal (especially before considering seconds) can help lessen the amount of food you want to consume. Drink six to eight glasses of water each day, and have two big glasses of water before the big holiday meals.

              Reinvent Your Workouts

              It can be a bit of a challenge to make time for working out while traveling and visiting family. So to stay motivated, plan your workout routine in advance around your holiday schedule so there’s no room for excuses. Instead of the usual 30-minute routine, do a 15-minute workout in the morning or evening or go for a 10-minute walk twice a day. The goal is to split your physical activity into smaller, more manageable time intervals.

              Reinvent Your Workouts

              It can be a bit of a challenge to make time for working out while traveling and visiting family. So to stay motivated, plan your workout routine in advance around your holiday schedule so there’s no room for excuses. Instead of the usual 30-minute routine, do a 15-minute workout in the morning or evening or go for a 10-minute walk twice a day. The goal is to split your physical activity into smaller, more manageable time intervals.

              Make Time for Self-Care

              This may be the most important step of all. Don’t let the holiday madness take a toll on your mental, physical, or emotional health. Whether you’re caught up in cooking, holiday shopping, or socializing, don’t put your needs on the back burner. Take some time to relax and unwind however is best for you. Go for a walk, do some yoga, watch a hallmark movie, take a bath, or read a good book. Do something every day that makes you happy and leaves you feeling refreshed. And don’t forget—get enough sleep! The holidays can be busy, and you may feel the need to pack everything you can into each day but aim for seven to nine hours of sleep.

              Don’t forget to enjoy yourself! Merry Christmas, everyone!

              Equipment Free Workouts for Winter Break

              December 5, 2019

              Written By Alivia Chenoweth, Marketing Manager

              Let’s Admit It…

              Going home for the holidays means you don’t have access to LaHaye. But that doesn’t mean you have to lose your routine! Doing simple, short workouts from the comfort of home can be very effective in attaining your goals—no gym necessary. Here are some exercises you can complete at home over winter break.

                No Equipment Body Weight Workout

                Surprisingly, it is easy to achieve a full-body workout with a handful of equipment-free workouts. After stretching, we recommend beginning with your upper body and working your way down. To start, pushups are great upper body workouts that work the shoulders, chest, triceps and ab muscles. Next, sit ups, crunches, and planks are all very effective core and ab workouts. Finally, strengthen your legs by performing lunge holds, alternating lunges, squats, and calf raises.  Obviously, this is not an exhaustive list of body weight workouts, so feel free to expand your arsenal by researching more!

                Under 15 Minute Workout

                (20-30 second breaks between each exercise)

                • 10-12 pushups
                • 8-10 diamond pushups
                • 10-12 declined pushups (put feet on a chair or bench)
                • 30 sit ups with hands behind head
                • 30 cross-arm crunches
                • 60 second plank
                • 45 second left leg lunge hold
                • 45 second right leg lunge hold
                • Alternating lunges (15 for each leg)
                • 20 squats
                • 20 calf raises
                • Repeat workouts 2x

                Feel free to adjust reps, times, and workouts to suit your own fitness level and specific focus. If you stay consistent with these workouts 5-6 days a week, results will be visible within a month or two. The best part is, it should take no more than 15-20 minutes of your time each day! Also, for more workout inspiration or encouragement, check out our Workout Wednesday videos which are available on our Facebook page.

                Finding Rest Over Thanksgiving Break

                November 22, 2019

                Written By Samantha Schwab, Marketing Employee

                This semester has been flying by, and Thanksgiving break is already just around the corner. In the midst of the hustle of grinding for final exams, take this time to focus on you and nourish your mind and body by finding ways to rest! You deserve a well-earned break in the midst of the chaos that surrounds you in this season of prepping for the end of the semester.

                Here are 5 tips on ways you can find rest during Thanksgiving Break.

                Self-Care

                When was the last time you went to your favorite coffee shop, found the coziest corner, and dug into that new book you’ve been waiting to read? Go spend some time with yourself! If coffee shops aren’t your thing then go drive to the nearest nature trail and spend some time walking and reflecting on your inner self. Or maybe you need a cliché spa day—so go put on a facemask and sit back while binging a new Netflix show.

                When life gets busy we tend to shove aside our much-needed self-care tasks in order to get done the more pressing tasks that consume our weeks. Find rest in self-care this holiday break.

                  Don’t Over Plan!

                  Plans, plans, plans! Planned obligations consume our weeks and keep us running from place to place. We keep our weeks busy during the semester, intentionally or not, so take this break to find rest in having no pressing and overwhelming obligations.

                  Take time to do nothing (that’s still technically doing something, right?). This isn’t to say you can’t make plans at all, just don’t cram your schedule full of events and tasks and end up leaving yourself more restless than before! Find rest in the simplicity of break.

                  Reconnect

                  You are on your way back to your hometown, and you are about to be surrounded by family and old friends who happen to be back for break as well. Alone time can be great, but there is something rejuvenating about spending time with friends and family you haven’t seen in a while. Take time to be intentional with people you may not get to see often, invest deeply into them, and let them invest deeply into you!

                  Old Hobbies

                  How long has it been since you pulled out those acrylic paints and made a masterpiece that wasn’t for an assignment? When was the last time you pulled out that dusty guitar and learned a new song? What about the last time you practiced your 3-point shot in your driveway basketball hoop? Hobbies are so important in our lives! It is so great to accomplish something with no pressure or urgency. Working on something simply because you enjoy it can really refill your motivation tank. It’s hard to make time for your passions when obligations are around every corner. So, find some rest in the creativity of your hobbies this break!

                  Sleep

                  Last, but certainly not least, get some sleep! Honestly, this is probably the most important tip of all. If you’re a student three months deep into the semester and don’t have a crazy sleep schedule, then kudos to you. You are a rare breed! Many of us live off of four hours of sleep and a morning caffeine boost that barely keeps us going. But a solid, regular sleep schedule can be one of the biggest benefits to your energy, drive, and health. Use this break to reset your sleep schedule and prepare your mind and body for a rigorous finals week.

                  Pro Tip: You should aim for 7 hours of solid sleep each night.

                  It’s important to set aside time in order to put your mind and body first. Doing so will make for an overall happier and healthier you. I hope you find these ideas helpful and use them to find rest this upcoming break. Cheers to a happy Thanksgiving and a restful week!

                   

                  Preparation for Finals

                  November 15, 2019

                  Written By Alivia Chenoweth, Marketing Manager

                  Finals week is approaching, which means stress! A lot of people struggle finding mental health balance during this time, and the motivation to do the final push through classes can be tough. Thankfully, there are 3 weeks until finals season which means there is plenty of time to prepare. Preparation is prevention, so let’s dive into the 5 ways that you can prepare for finals and make it into something positive.

                  Make To Do Lists

                  Organizing and prioritizing when you are going to study for each class can actually alleviate anxiety, according to Psychology Today.  Lists help combat avoidance and procrastination—they help organize your inner chaos, making your workload feel more manageable.

                    Back Off the Caffeine

                    Yep—you read that right. I just stated the unspeakable, and probably the opposite of what you think you should do during finals week. Caffeine is known to increase your alertness, but it also increases anxiety. Focus on limiting yourself to one to two cups a day instead of the normal five to six. You’ll end up sleeping better too and your body will thank you.

                    Don’t Neglect Healthy Eating Habits

                    It’s easy to reach for the snacks and foods that are quick and reliable when we don’t have time to make something healthy. Foods lacking in nutrients slow down your brain, making your body and mind more tired and struggling to focus.

                    Pro tip—grab some blueberries instead of that Kit Kat. Blueberries are high in antioxidants that boost brain power and memory.

                    Switch Up Your Space

                    Sitting in one room for too long, staring at the same book can actually cause your brain to become stale and stagnant. A change of pace and environment can trigger your brain to make new memory associations. For example, if you have been sitting in a dark room for a while, move to a seat near the windows. There is nothing a little Vitamin C can’t fix!

                    Take Breaks

                    This is so important and can’t be emphasized enough! It’s okay to step away for a few hours and let yourself recharge. One of the BEST ways to do this is to hit the gym and get your body moving! LaHaye Rec and Fit offers over 30 free Group Exercise and Group Ex Plus classes (at an additional cost) available to you to get your mind off of the anxiety and worries of the semester. On December 4-6 from 7–8 P.M., there will be a Candlelight Restorative Yoga Class (free for Group Ex Plus, $10 for non-members) that will blend several styles of yoga with aromatherapy to ease your body and mind in a stressful season.

                    Hopefully a few of these tips are helpful to you as you prepare yourself for finals week. The end of the semester has so many fun Christmas events going on for you to enjoy, and preparing early for finals will help you feel less stressed and more festive. Good luck!

                    5 Podcasts to Get You Through Your Workout

                    November 7, 2019

                    Written By Katrina Burgess, Aquatics Coordinator

                    The days are starting to get busy and the weather is getting cold—and let’s be honest, classes and work are beginning to fill the longest days we have seen all year. What better way to get through the day than with a podcast?

                    So let’s grab our earphones and begin the search for the best podcast for you. Here are 5 podcasts to make the whole week feel like the weekend.

                    1. The Ken Coleman Show

                    To start your podcast search off, here is my all-time favorite: The Ken Coleman Show. In each of the episodes within this podcast, the host, Ken Coleman (did anyone else guess that?), establishes the key points to become the person who you want to be in the place where you want to be. On the show, Ken takes calls from people all over the world and listens as they pour their confusion, frustration, and dreams onto his lap. The cool thing about Ken is that he never simply gives the answer to the question, but through the 35-45 minute episodes, he allows the caller with the question to answer their own question!

                    • If you are in the mood for professional life guidance – e.g. preparing for the perfect interview or how to recognize key producers within your field of study or interest, this is the podcast for you!
                    • If you are in the mood for personal life discussion – e.g. learning how your passions and natural talents can translate into your dream job, this is the podcast for you as well!

                    Also, if you’re into reading, Ken Coleman published a book called The Proximity Principle which is currently selling for just $11 on Amazon!

                    2. How I Built This with Guy Raz

                    The host, Guy Raz, engages in conversations with innovators, entrepreneurs, and idealists to highlight the stories behind some of the world’s best known companies. Have you ever heard of the Milk Bar or AirBnb? Good—because he has a few episodes where the journey behind these movements they built are discussed! Whether you love milk and cookies or tiny homes, you will love this podcast!

                    3. Borrowed Future

                    Put your hand up if you are currently experiencing college debt! Ladies and gentleman, this podcast was created for you whether you are experiencing debt or are totally debt-free. Between September 2019 and October 2019, Anthony O’Neal created his podcast and published his book Debt Free Degree ($14 on Amazon) with the goal to teach parents how to send their child to college completely debt-free. His podcast highlights the lies about student loans, the ways you can pay for college without debt, and how to decide if college is worth it. While you could send it on over to your parents, I believe this podcast is vital and educational for you as a student, too!

                    4. Spitballers Comedy Podcast

                    Alright, who enjoys a good dad-joke? The co-hosts of this show are award-winning dads filled with humor and the intention of making you laugh by answering the most difficult questions and engaging in ridiculous conversations. Each episode will give you 45 minutes to 1 hour of non-stop fun. *Pro-tip: you should never take their advice.

                    5. Jocko Podcast

                    If you enjoy serious topics on discipline and leadership, Jocko Willink will blow your mind. The Jocko Podcast releases 1-3 hour episodes each week to discuss the principles that form business, war, relationships, and everyday life. If you follow @jockowillink on Instagram, you will see that he consistently starts his day around 4:30am (Shout out to our  Recreation Centers morning shift employees!) Let this podcast encourage you, from the moment you open your eyes, to get work done!

                    If one of these podcasts interests your mind, start listening! If not, I encourage you to find one that challenges you to become productive with your talents, increases your mindfulness during all aspects of life, and benefits your professional development.

                    8 Tips to Overcome Gym Anxiety

                    November 1, 2019

                    Written By Britta Solle, Personal Trainer and Group Exercise Instructor

                    The gym can be an intimidating place for many different reasons. Whether it’s the people, the noise, the equipment, or something else, it’s never fun to feel anxious in a place that should be for reaching goals and bettering yourself. As someone who has been lifting for a few years, I know exactly what that feels like, and it’s totally normal—we all have to start somewhere. When I first started working out it took months for me to find the courage to try a new machine or exercise. I didn’t even touch a barbell for almost a year of being in the gym! From someone who’s worked through all the uncertainty, self-conscious thoughts, and confusion, here are my best tips & advice for overcoming gym anxiety:

                    Come prepared

                    Write down your workout on your phone or in a notebook, and make it specific. Ask yourself these questions to help build your workout: What body parts do I want to work? What exercises do I want to do? What machines do I need to use? How many sets and reps of each exercise am I going to do? Write it all down. The more you get accustomed to the gym, the less specific you will probably have to be. But, this is my best piece of advice when starting out. It prevents you from wandering around aimlessly, trying a few random things, and then leaving after 15 minutes. A planned workout is a productive workout!

                    Really, no one is watching you

                    It’s important to know that even if it feels like everyone is staring/judging you, they’re not. The gym is very self-centered, meaning everyone is there for themselves and to better themselves. I promise they’re more focused on their own workouts (or how they look in the mirror) than what anyone else is doing.

                    Don’t compare yourself

                    You are there to work towards YOUR goals and better YOURSELF—it doesn’t matter what the person next to you is doing, how heavy they’re lifting, or what they look like. It’s okay to look up to certain people in the gym, but don’t get caught up in wishing you looked like them or make it your goal to look like them. Everybody is supposed to be different. You are your own amazing person; work on being the best version of YOU.

                    The experienced lifters had to start somewhere, too!

                    They had gym fears of their own, were unsure of themselves, and should be happy for you that you’re here working hard as well.

                    Google it!

                    Look up certain things you’re unsure about on Google or Youtube. If possible, I recommend trying a bodyweight version in the comfort of your home or dorm, first! If you have a general idea of how to do the exercise, you’ll feel more confident trying it with weight at the gym.

                    Wear something you feel confident in

                    Sometimes all it takes is a new workout outfit that you feel good in for that extra boost of confidence and motivation.

                    Bring a friend

                    Having someone to go with you to the gym can help both of you feel more confident. Even if you’re confused, at least you can be confused together. Then, you can figure it out together, too! It’s also a great way to receive feedback about your form and have some accountability.

                    Don’t go during the peak hours

                    Ask the front desk when the gym is quiet, and then workout around those times. With less people there,  you can do your own thing without gym bro next to you grunting through his reps or feeling watched. When you feel more confident, you can always switch to a different or more convenient time.

                    I hope that some of these tips can help you gain some confidence to start working out or to try something new in the gym! There are so many ways to exercise, and these tips can apply to any type of workout. Don’t get discouraged—it’s a process, but with time and consistency you can gain confidence and reach your fitness goals. Remember, the gym is not just for “fit” people; it is for anyone and everyone who wants to make a change. Now take a friend, write yourselves a fun workout, and go reach those goals!