New to the Rec: A horror story

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Βeing a person who has a severe case of gym anxiety, yet also someone with a desire to be somewhat fit makes going to the gym at college a difficult and terrifying experience.
Whenever I attempt to go to the gym alone I am incredibly nervous and extremely timid.
For whateve reason, I always feel like someone is watching me and making fun of whatever I do.
While no one probably is, I still can’t help but think of a million stupid things to worry about instead of focusing on my workout.
“Wait, am I using this machine right?
“Wow I probably look really dumb running right now because I’m not running fast enough. Wait is that guy laughing at me or…?
“OK that girl is really hot, how do I look like that?
“Yep, that guy is definitely making fun of me.”
These are just a few examples of the many stupid monologues running through my mind while I attempt to get some sort of workout completed.
Maybe it’s just me, but I also get a weird vibe from the regular gym attendees whenever I attempt to create a workout pattern of my own.
It’s almost like I’ve stepped onto their terrain and how dare I use their equipment or their machines.
It’s also forbidden to walk in front of the mirror while they are flexing because heaven forbid I take away one second in which they could be looking at themselves.
Like I said, maybe it’s just me, but I see tweets and posts from students all the time complaining about all the new people at the gym and the “New Year’s resolution losers.”
While working out by myself is no doubt a horrible time, going to work out in groups is no better an experience.
You would think that going with some friends would be entirely less stressful but I always end up comparing myself to whomever I go with, which creates a new level of anxiety.
Plus, a group only draws more attention to the fact that I’m not a regular and I don’t know what I’m doing or exactly where I’m supposed to stand at all times.
Workout classes aren’t very successful for me either because the timing never seems to work out, and I always end up having a meeting or too much homework the night of the class.
Having to walk into an exercise class with no idea who will be there and what intensity it will be, surprise, surprise, also stresses me out.
For people who are confident and know their way around a gym I’m sure the Rec here at Gannon is a great place.
Unfortunately, I am not one of those people, so I tend to wander around with a frightened look on my face while trying to avoid eye contact with any of the “normal” gym goers.
Maybe someday I’ll get the gym scene figured out and I’ll actually be able to step foot into the Rec without my blood pressure jumping.
Until then, I’ll just stick to my Zumba videos and corny ‘80s ab workouts that I can embarrassingly complete in the comfort of my apartment.

OLIVIA BURGER
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