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  • Writer's pictureArina Hunter

Go Into The Gym and Your Workout with More Confidence

Updated: Mar 12


Oh wow can it feel overwhelming, scary, intimidating to do something new, to go to a new space, to start a new routine.

Have you felt:

“I’m a little anxious about going into the gym…”

“I’m not sure what to do, where to go within the gym”

“I don’t know where or how to start my home workout”

I often hear how it feels nerve racking to go into a gym or a new space.

And often those nerves come from not knowing what to do, where to go, safe form and posture, feeling unsure.

Today we are going to focus on feeling confident and comfortable in gym and fitness spaces. Stay tuned for a home workout exclusive coming soon!

How to go into the gym or a new workout space for the first time with more confidence:

It helps to know what might be in the space and some ideas of what you can do with them. 

Having a plan takes away some of the nerves and the struggle of getting started.

So let’s get to know what might be in the space and some ideas of what you do there.

So you can go into fitness with more confidence!

And actually do the thing.


Tools you will commonly see in a gym, fitness, or athletic space:



-Stability/Fit Balls

-BOSU Stability Trainer

-Resistance bands (loops, long bands, short bands, handled bands, etc)




-Racks and Plates

-Plyobox, stepper, step boxes

-Medicine Balls, sand balls/bags, slam balls

-Foam Rollers

-And more!

Getting to know what it is the space, what it is called, and a couple ideas of what you can do with that item is a great place to start.

Having a starting plan can make it easier to start.

And once we get in there and get started, it is so much easier to keep going!

Now that we know what might be in the space,

Let’s explore some ideas of what you can do with them.

Once you get in the gym, it helps to start in one area and build from there.


Having a plan takes away some of the nerves and the struggle of getting started.

A great place to start is with a couple dumbbells.

Also awesome for a first at home workout tool.

You can start with a pair at a weight that feels manageable.

Maybe grab a lighter and slightly heavier set.

Set them up in your workout area and you are good to go!

This helps ease some of the fears and nerves of moving around a new gym space.

If you’re totally unsure what weight to start with, maybe grab some 5lbs and a set of 8 or 10lbs dumbbells. 

Try them out for a few moves to see if they feel manageable while still feeling slightly challenging.

It is normal for some moves to be a lighter weight than others.

If you can do 12-15 reps and still feel like you could keep going while maintaining form. Try out a slightly heavier weight and see how it goes!

You likely are stronger than you think!

How to get started with dumbbells?


There are a few ways that we can hold dumbbells:

-holding the handle

-holding each side of the weight

-holding around one end of the weight like a goblet or big glass

4 Simple Exercise Moves to Get Started with Dumbbells:

  1. Bicep Curl: you can do this with palms up or palms facing in

  2. Squat: weights at the shoulders or at your sides

  3. Dumbbell Bent over Row: Alternate Option Single Arm Row with support on a wall, bench, or box 

  4. Lunges: Reverse Lunge or Static Lunge/Split Squat

Start out with 10-15 reps of each move. Then repeat all of the moves (bicep curl, squat, row, lunge) 2-4 times. 

Add in a quick warm up and short cool down and you’ve got a powerful quick dumbbell strength workout.

These are a couple options to start out with dumbbells.

There are endless opportunities in what you can do and the ways you can hold them.

Another easy to grab tool in the gym or at home is kettlebells.

They are easy to grab one or a couple and set yourself up for a whole workout.

There are also many adjustable kettlebell weight options for easy space at home.

There are a few ways to hold these,

Such as:

-hand on top of the handle

-both hands holding the top of the handle

-holding the sides of the handle

-holding the bell

-hand wrapped through the handle

If one grip doesn’t work for your wrists/body, or for the move that you are doing, try a different one.

Fun fact: you can do each of these with a dumbbell as well!

Take these moves, repeat each one 10-15 times and bust out a simple workout.

Keeping things simple is a fantastic way to get started in the gym or your home workout.

-Single Arm Row

-Suitcase Reverse Lunge

-Kettlebell Ribbon


-Side Bend

Start out with 10-15 reps of each move. Then repeat all of the moves (row, lunge, ribbon, squat, side bend) 2-4 times. 

Add in a quick warm up and short cool down and you’ve got a powerful quick dumbbell strength workout.

Next, let’s look at stability/fit/exercise balls:

Ever looked at exercise balls and wondered what you could do with that?

Many many things! And part of the fun to me is playing with options and ideas.

Some great places to start out:

-Sitting on the ball like a chair. It will give an extra challenge for your core stability because the ball moves! Marching, twisting, core work.

-Using the ball like a bench. With the ball behind your shoulders and head. Holding a bridge while you do moves like chest press, fly, etc.

-Leaning/sitting into the ball for crunches, sit ups, side crunches, hip thrusts.

-Lying on the floor with the ball under your feet. Elevating your bridges, hamstring curls!

-Lying on your back with the ball between your hands and knees. Awesome for deadbug, core work.

-Using the ball for planks. Ball under forearms. Ball under your feet/legs.

-Ball under your pelvis/belly for a supported birddog, superwoman, dumbbell row, fly. 

-Ball against the wall. With your back on the ball for squats. With your arms on the ball for a wall slide or plank.

Whew! As you can see that list can keep growing and growing!

Play with it, have fun, explore, you just might find something cool ☺️ And you can take some of these ideas as a first starting place.

A suspension trainer, such as a TRX, is another tool that many gym spaces have and that is easy to add at home without taking up much space.

These straps can fold up small into a pouch for home or travel. At home, you can anchor from your door, to a stud, or outside on a pole, tree, or anything stable.

Suspension training is fantastic for strength, stretching, mobility, support, and core work!

It is a fantastic tool for recovery and rehab,

Great for a total body push,

Challenges the core with each and every move,

So often I have clients and hear people searching for more ways to work the core. This one is awesome for core while doing arms, legs, total body.

How to use the TRX/a suspension trainer.

You can adjust the straps to longer or shorter by pulling on the adjustment straps.

You can use one or two handles for different moves.

You can face towards the anchor point, away from it, sideways/perpendicular to the anchor, be on the floor with your feet in.

The opportunities are endless!

I’ll be sharing some quick moves you can do for a workout or stretch/mobility session.

Pop back here to catch them.

Last for today,

Let’s talk about the Bosu!

You have likely seen one of these in fitness spaces, on social media, etc.

So how do I use this?


We can use the Bosu flat side down or round side down.

Flat side down is great for:


-Using as a stepper


-Moves that you would use a larger fitness/stability ball for, now with more support

-Such as doing a chest press with your shoulders/head on the bosu and holding a bridge position

-Doing core work leaning/sitting on the bosu

-Putting your feet onto the bosu and laying down on a mat. Doing bridges, single leg, etc.

Round side down is great for:

-Increased stability during planks, mountain climbers, pushups


-Stability moves

-My professional recommendation is bodyweight with the round side down. Focus on stability and control 

A Bosu is a great option to do moves that you would use a step deck, stepper, bench, plyo box, stability/fit ball for. And change them up slightly to create some more variety in your routine.

Here’s a couple ideas to get you started with a bosu and in the gym.


You can find them as bars with attached plates.

These are often shorter.

You can also find barbells with loadable plates.

Along with ones that are attached to machines such as a smith machine.

Barbells with plates that you load might look scary at first.

Once you know how to slide that weight on and secure it with the attachment that your gym space has -you are good to go!

The standard barbell is 45 pounds. A women’s barbell is 33 pounds and has a slightly smaller grip.

Some gyms also have a lighter training/aluminum barbell that is between 18-25 pounds (these have a reduced max load).

Depending on how you set it up barbells can be used for many moves: Chest Press, Hip Thurst, Squats, Deadlift, Rows, Thrusts and Cleans, Overhead Presses, Lunges, Landmine exercises.

Moves you can do without a rack:

-Hip Thrust




-Landmine (using other plates or an anchor)

-Overhead Presses

Moves that you can use with an adjustable or specific set rack/smith machine:


-Chest Press


-Overhead Presses


Many barbell moves are interchangeable with dumbbells. Don’t have space for barbells at home? Gym barbells are taken? Switch it up with dumbbells, kettlebells. Pop back to videos part 1-4 for ideas!

If you feel unsure about any tools in the gym, feel overwhelmed about how to get started, get nerve racked about going into a new fitness space,

you are not alone.

I have many clients come to me who have never lifted or been shown how to lift weights before.

We all have to start and learn from where we are. And! Once you know a couple ideas, it will feel much more doable.

Weights are fantastic tools, especially for women. Let’s get you feeling strong and powerful!

For many of my clients having ideas, knowing what they are going to do and can do, makes it much more doable to show up, get into the gym, and bust out their workout.

Because getting started is much harder when we feel unsure, nervous, unfamiliar.

Take some of these starter ideas and get your body moving!

A great way to get yourself to workout is to have the confidence, understanding, plan, and tools to know that you can safely get in a workout.

Knowing what to do really helps my clients to get going.

Cause let’s be real, getting started is really the hardest part.

It is so much more doable to work hard in your workout once you actually start to workout.

So let’s get to know the gym tools to get more confident in the gym and fitness spaces!

What can you use for your workout this coming week or month?

Pop in and let me know! 😀

Your Coach,


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