2014 is winding down and your resolutions for the New Year are starting to form inside your mind. This upcoming year you’ve decided to get dedicated and reactivate that old gym membership. You’re going to have the fittest figure, healthiest eating habits and be totally committed to earning that “#fitlife” caption on all of your pictures.

photocredit: Mika Rotunda

photocredit: Mika Rotunda

Before you begin your aspirations to out lift Mr. Olympia and run circles around Jillian Michaels, please take the time to take learn from my mistakes and avoid your own personal embarrassing gym moments. We’ll start with the most common.

Don’t fret, sweat!

Sweating, in all the wrong places. Fear not because we all do it, whether intentionally or on accident. Our bodies have a built-in cooling mechanism that can unfortunately get out of hand… or other body parts. Sweat is your new best friend and you may as well embrace it. Once you ignore its stench, try this tip: invest in some dark-colored or quick dry fabric gear and bring a towel along with you. Those spiffy yoga pants and racer back tanks actually serve a vital purpose for the avid gym visitor. Luckily, you still have time to add those to your wish list! Okay, that’s one gym hurdle already leaped over for the new year. Next…

The “Zoolander” Face

Photo Credit: The CW

Photo Credit: The CW

Mirrors are everywhere at the gym. Aside from the dozens of gym mirror selfies that cover your news feed on a daily basis, they’re there for another reason. Proper form while working out is crucial for optimal results, therefore mirrors are strategically placed around the gym. Don’t be caught giving the mirror your best vogue look or as I like to call it, “Zoolander face!” Plenty of times, I’ve had awkward encounters as people (including myself) dote over their newly developed triceps and check their cheekbones giving a fierce flex and model pose.

Solution, take a selfie in the bathroom.

Putting on the Ritz for the Gym

Dressing for the gym can be tricky, as we talked about earlier. You want something that you can wear to prevent embarrassing sweat, but you also need to be comfortable. Many times I have been the victim of an outfit that hinders my workout. Tight pants, short shorts, shoes that offer no support and many other options can hold you back at the gym. When walking into the gym, you should have a mentality set to conquer your goals. Try to leave cute in the car and bring on the challenge ahead. Spending a lot of time planning an outfit for the gym isn’t a necessity, so keep it as simple as possible.

People Watching… Too Hard 

cwtv.com

cwtv.com

People watching at the gym is my favorite activity to do while burning calories on the elliptical, but there is a difference between observing and being rude. Grunting men slamming weights, old women stretching for twenty minutes on the machine in front of you and those kids on the bench press who don’t look old enough to have a gym pass are going to be distracting.

Basically, if you are going to watch people… a poker face or smile is a must. The gym should be a judgement free atmosphere. Ironically the person you are glaring at is there to reach a goal just like you are, so be kind to your fellow gym mates and don’t be too critical.

Falling Down and Getting Back Up

Missing the beat and slipping in step class, pedaling backwards on the elliptical, tripping over a dumbbell that someone didn’t re-rack and turning up the speed to high on the treadmill… been there and busted my butt! Highly likely, this will happen to you; but don’t be ashamed. Everyone has clumsy moments, especially at the gym.

Best advice here is to learn to laugh at yourself, wipe the sweat off your sleeve and hop right back into the workout. Part of chiseling  your goals is learning new things about yourself. Try not to take yourself too seriously and enjoy your gym experiences. Nine times out of 10, the person who saw you in your moment of “self-defeat” has been there themselves. Keep being the little engine that could and you’ll stay right on track!

Take these tips into 2015 and start accomplishing your fitness goals!

Mika Rotunda | CW44 Tampa Bay

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