Is looking good at the gym important?

Looking good at the gym

It’s easy to feel self-conscious at the gym. The machines look intimidating, there are toned physiques everywhere and weights being thrown around. It’s enough to completely put you off ever stepping foot into a gym.

If you are struggling with ‘gymtimidation‘, you are not alone. A survey of 1700 people conducted by Buytshirtsonline showed that 44% of people avoided exercising in a gym because of body confidence issues.

There was a time when I would have been intimidated by a gym environment, but these days I won’t let it affect me or my fitness goals. When I’m training at the gym, whether it’s on the Wattbike or with my Personal Trainer, I’m totally focused on the workout and pretty much oblivious to what’s going on around me.

Looking good at the gym

The desire for looking good at the gym is in part fuelled by social media. Instagram is filled with highly curated images of perfect fitness models living enviable lifestyles which receive thousands of likes and followers.
Over half of 18-24-year-olds surveyed had a ‘Gym-Style Icon’ which are usually Instagram influencers with a large following.  

Alongside social media, the activewear market has boomed in recent years, with more people willing to invest in gym clothing. The gym is no longer the place to wear an old oversized T-shirt and battered trainers. Brands like Gymshark have capitalised on the idea of using social media influencers to market their apparel.

It’s true that there is a correlation between what you wear and how you perform. Wearing clothing that fits and looks good can boost motivation levels and inspire you to keep up your fitness regime. In fact, 40% of people surveyed own specific gym wear and perceive this to be ‘cool’ with 34% consistently buying new gym wear. Alongside this, there has also been an increase in sweat-proof makeup and cosmetic products designed for looking good at the gym.

Looking good at the gym

The gym I attend regularly has a fairly inclusive environment. I like to think that it’s a judgement-free zone. People are there for different reasons, have different fitness goals and seem to be getting on with their own workouts. Those who are there to pose and take selfies are in the minority. However I have attended gyms in the past where I’ve seen people taking a selfie after every sit-up!

As a fitness blogger, I’m no stranger to sharing my goals and progress on social media. However, I strive to keep it real and honest. I’m faily body confident but I don’t have a perfect body. I use the mirrors to check my form rather than my abs (or lack of).

I’ll usually finish a training session drenched in sweat with my clothes sticking to me and my hair dripping. I look a mess but my only concern is beasting my training session. I tend to feel as though I haven’t had a decent workout if I haven’t broken a sweat, but surprisingly 20% of those surveyed claimed they felt self-conscious about sweating during a workout. I would also never apply a face full of make-up before training, mostly because who has time for that?

Looking good at the gym can be empowering for some people, but it’s also very freeing to workout without worrying what people think. The gym should be a place where you feel strong and inspired- regardless of whether you are wearing the latest fitness apparel and posting selfies on Instagram.

This post is sponsored by Buytshirtsonline- check out the results of their gym perception survey, there are some interesting stats.

How important is looking good at the gym to you?

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