Top 5 Tips For Keeping A Low Profile In The Gym

A Gym Rat's Insights...

March 13, 2019

I hear a lot of people say they’re intimidated by the gym. Other people say it makes them uncomfortable when they do bring themselves to actually step foot in one- an accomplishment in itself! I certainly was both of those things when I first walked into a gym in Santa Barbara nearly ten years ago. Obviously, you’ve gotta give yourself some time to get comfortable in a new environment, which is what today’s blog is all about.

For #WeightRoomWednesday this week, here are my top 5 tips to keep a low profile and blend in at the gym:

  1. Put your weights back. Common courtesy amongst people who “get it” in there.
  2. Use an appropriate amount of weight. This is about your safety, but also, no one has ever looked like a jackass for having awesome form with lighter weight. You will 100% look like a jackass when you drop the weight obnoxiously or hurt yourself and cause a scene, which brings me to number 3:
  3. Don’t drop your weight obnoxiously.* And that brings me to number 4! (“Yes Matt, we know how lists work...”):
  4. Don’t grunt obnoxiously.*
  5. Don’t wear brightly-colored shorts and cutoffs with aggressive band logos on them, or headbang and play air instruments between sets, like I usually do.**

*I usually don’t mind when people grunt or drop the weight on the last rep of their heaviest set, but if you’re new you probably don’t need to be going that heavy, nor do you want the extra attention.

**I’m not trying to keep a low profile OR blend in! While this tip doesn't help with those two, it does make working out more fun for me.

That’s really it. I swear it's not that bad once you get in there. Most people in the gym are VERY caught up in their own world. It’s their “me” time. They’re probably not even paying attention to you! If they do notice you and you’re doing the 5 things above, you’ve got nothing to worry about.

If for some weird reason they don’t have headphones and you make eye contact, you can even ask “What are you hittin’ today?”, which is bro-speak for “which body part/movement pattern are you working out today?”. This is a great conversation-starter because people who workout love to talk about working out (as you might have noticed from reading this blog).

You have a lot to gain in the gym. Not just physical strength and possibly a shot at a summer bod (if you start TODAY!), but also mental toughness and confidence from overcoming fear and developing a new skill. Hopefully a reminder of these things, coming from a guy who spends 20+ hours a week in a gym training people, will help you get in there and become the strongest version of yourself.

Down With The Fitness is here to give you simple, actionable tips that will improve your health. If you found this helpful, feel free to check out the archives for more.

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Have fun and do your best,
Matt Koch