I feel self-conscious about going to the gym. What do I do?

You are not alone in this feeling. This is a common issue that comes up for people who are just starting on their fitness journey. There are two important things to think about when facing this feeling:

  1. Everybody was a beginner once. Everyone you see in the gym who is much more strong/muscular/fit than you had to start somewhere, just like you are now. They likely started out somewhere very similar to you and even felt what you are feeling right now.
  2. The majority of people in the gym are much more focused on themselves and their own workout than they are on anything else, including you. If they even notice you at all, they likely view you as just another person who is sharing the same general space and aren’t even giving you a second thought, let alone silently judging or laughing at you. If it seems like anyone is staring at or watching you, just assume it’s out of encouragement instead of judgement.

The best way to get past your fear/nervousness/uncertainty/self-consciousness is to just force yourself to keep the above in mind and just keep going to the gym until it becomes comfortable.

Here’s some additional advice from fitness model Jamie Eason on this subject.