Let’s Talk About: Gym Confidence + Gear Options

Hi friends! How’s your morning going? Hope it’s been lurvely so far 🙂

Last night, I took Bella to one of my little bro’s baseball games. The white dog parade was there! Bell was so happy to see her cousins.


(with my nana and stepmom)

Today is day #2 at the resort- 6 classes today to take/observe! It’s been a challenge to pack my eats since working out on a food baby is no picnic, so I’ve been doing smaller bites and snacks all the livelong day. I’m going to see how it goes this week and tweak as necessary.

Here’s what I packed up for today:

A quinoa, chickpea, Greek style salad


(with 2 servings of quinoa, 1/2 C garbanzo beans, some olives, a red bell pepper, cucumber, lemon juice, mint and olive oil)

2 amazeballz

a smoothie


(almond milk, Sun Warrior, banana, strawberries, raw cacao powder)

and a coconut water.


I should be good to go for the day, and may stop by the employee caf to pick up something to munch on the way home. Everything there is healthy and most of it is organic- I’m a happy girl 🙂 We’ll see how it goes.

Breakfast was another egg-rito 🙂


I was out of salsa, but it was still good with mustard and nutritional yeast.

Since I’ve gotta peace out, I thought in the meantime it would be fun to discuss two things:

1. Gym confidence and

2. Workout clothing options for gym-goers looking to lose weight

Here are a couple of questions that I recently received, along with my input:

I want to work out at the gym, but every time I go, I feel like people are staring me. I have over 100 lbs I’d like to lose, but get so self-conscious when I work out. Any tips on overcoming this?

flirty girl (2)

This is something that I definitely struggled with when I was beginning my weight loss journey. I made the mistake of working out at the Campus Rec, which is basically hot bod central, and felt self-conscious every time I was there. I always thought the girls were judging me and the frat boys were scoffing at me, which probably isn’t true, but I certainly felt less than comfortable. It blew my mind because I thought gyms were for *getting fit*, and everyone seemed to be fit already. I was discouraged.

What did I do? I changed my environment. I worked out at the YMCA instead, which had a lot of families, guests of various fitness levels and ages, and was able to work out more comfortably. Later, I joined LA Fitness when I wanted to start taking more classes and was more at ease in a gym environment.

I totally understand that it’s not always possible to change place of sweat-age, so if you have to stay at the same gym or spot, here’s what I think:

-99.9% of the time, people are way too focused on their own workouts to worry about what you’re doing. I’ve seen some crazy stuff in gyms since I’ve worked at quite a few: people huffing and puffing (more like screaming), doing crazy calisthenics and jumps, insane workout attire, people of all walks of life and fitness levels, and guess what? No one cares.

-Every time I see someone who is working out to take charge of their health, I want to hug them, tell them I’m proud of them, and to stick with it. But then, I’d be a creeper, so I refrain. I’m willing to bet that the trainers and instructors in your gym –and fellow gym-goers who have worked hard to get where they’re at- feel the exact same way.

-Even if some people are staring or being obnoxious, some people are just jerks. Eff them. I’ve a big fan of faking it until you feel it… fake your confidence (tell yourself “I’m making myself stronger and healthier. I’m proud of myself”) and your confidence will grow. When you say it enough, you’ll start to believe it.

I’m at a place where I’m in a super duper high amount of stress and have let myself slip on my workouts.  I now need to lose about 40 pounds and am ready to take action but have found that I’m uncomfortable in my own skin.  Workout clothes are tight and clingy and hard to find in my size, especially that are flattering.  I also am on a budget, and workout clothes seem to be so expensive.  I was curious if you had thoughts or ideas for workout clothes in bigger sizes that look flattering on a curvy, heavy girl, and are a bit on the cheaper side.  Especially since my intention is to lose weight – I hate the idea of spending hundreds of dollars on new workout clothes that I don’t intend to be able to fit into for very long.  I imagine you have other readers that might be interested in this topic too – but I could be wrong. 

I always tell clients who want to lose weight (or decrease body fat %) to NOT buy new workout clothes! There’s nothing worse than spending $100 on a pair of black stretchy pants to have them falling off your bum a month later.


My tips:

-TJ Maxx is your friend. You can find AWESOME workout clothes at TJ Maxx (in a variety of sizes), for sick prices. Usually workout tops range from $7.99-19.99 and pants around $20-30. I’d only recommend buying a couple of pairs of pants, shorts and shirts. No need to go buck wild if it wont be fitting for long!


-Target (the fancy French boutique). They make decent-quality workout gear, which is also inexpensive. I’ve noticed that a lot of my stuff I used to wear from Target didn’t last very long, but when you won’t be counting on it to be an investment, NBD.

Any other tips?

Did you ever struggle with gym confidence? How did you overcome it?

What’s the best bet for inexpensive workout clothes in all sizes?

I’m excited to read your tips and advice. You guys will blow me away with awesomeness, per usual 🙂

Have a great day and I’ll see ya this afternoon!



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  1. Eates-A-Lot on April 28, 2011 at 11:48 am

    I have experience with all of these..
    I would say for gym confidence, my problem was that I was D1 athlete in college. I was fit, to say the least. Then I fell off the bandwagon. When I started to go back I felt weird and uncomfortable in those gyms that are more to hook up than to work out… So I started at a gym where my best friend is a trainer. I figured if I was with no one would say anything. After I felt comfortable lifting on my own I found my own gym. So I actually ended up joining a Y. It’s in the bottom of my building, so I have no excuse to work out. I always worked out in old t-shirts and shorts. Quite frankly, I don’t care what I work out in. I don’t need to look cute. My problem now is that I lost so much weight that I wear binder clips on some of my shorts to keep them up. (It’s finally time to buy, now I will buy tight tank tops & such because I’m finally comfortable in that.) Now looking back with the confidence thing, I was ashamed to be in the gym because of the level I was at, but I was the only one who knew that. Now that I’ve been working out for 3 years and I’m in shape… I don’t even focus on anyone else. I do weird things all the time in the gym, no one says a word. I will say, when I bench, and I do a higher weight, the guys take notice and congradulate me. Other than, everyone is focused.
    One of my favorite lessons I learned ‘ it’s only awkward/uncomfortable if you make it.’ If YOU dont’ let yourself feel like that, no one else can make you.
    Plus, after you lose the weight, you will gain SO MUCH RESPECT. That’ll help.
    Best wishes to everyone on their journey!

  2. Lindsey @ Happy or Hungry on April 28, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Hi Gina!
    This post had some really great advice!
    I think everyone feels self-conscious when they start a new workout routine, and I think you’re fake it til you feel it comment was bang on!

    Cheap workout gear…if you’re in Canada, Joe Fresh! Their styles are basically knock-off Lulu at a fraction of the price, and I have yet to have anything ball up or fall apart. All their clothes are great!
    Winners is a great store for designer duds also. I have found designer brands of workout clothes (basically anything except Lulu) for super cheap.

    Also, I got a pair of $7 running tights from Forever21 which are pretty awesome 🙂

  3. Heather on April 28, 2011 at 11:50 am

    I love when you’re a workin’ girl because I find your meal ideas and strategies so helpful! I never know what to pack for lunch and make up excuses like, “not enough time”, but…if you can do it, I can do it.

    Now…if I could just try one of your precious roons some day…my life would be complete. Haha! Happy working day!

  4. Morgan on April 28, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Thanks for the tips Gina! Now I am craving some new workout clothes!!! Have a great day at the new job! Sounds amazing 🙂

  5. Heather on April 28, 2011 at 11:55 am

    I have to say that the general public wouldn’t look at me and think “fitness fantatic” and I used to feel extremely self concious about trying new classes or wandering into the weight room, but I joined a YMCA and you’re right…there are a ton of people of all ages and sizes there…and I just started trying things with wreckless abandon.

    I remember standing in line to take a new weight lifting class and getting a small panic attack when everyone I saw waiting was about 50lbs lighter than me. But because I had been working out like a fiend…guess what? I RULED THAT CLASS! Just because I have a few more pounds on me, doesn’t mean I’m in horrible shape. I tell myself that every day. Bring it people!

  6. Faith @ lovelyascharged on April 28, 2011 at 11:55 am

    The most well-fitting (and confidence-boosting!!!) workout shirts I’ve ever worn were ones my grandma bought me at Walmart- no lie!

  7. Tracy on April 28, 2011 at 11:58 am

    Gym confidence is also a struggle I once had. The way that I overcame it was with music, timing and a plan. When I first starting going to the gym I’d wander around a lot, not sure what I wanted to do on that day. I looked and acted like a newbie, and that I felt drew attention to me. I eventually put together a schedule for myself on things that I wanted to work on, so that when I headed to the gym I knew where I was going, how long I was going to do it, and so on. It made me feel like I belonged there. Listening to music is always something that helps me drain out the white noise. When I listen to music I get into my own world and everything around me becomes a blur. Staring eyes, comments, or just that feeling that everyone is looking at you disappears. Lastly, one big booster for me was when to go to the gym. I went when it was less busy so I could allow myself to be free and more comfortable. Still to this day I follow these 3 things and my confidence and body is just where it needs to be.

  8. Marisa @ Mind Over Booty on April 28, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    I have literally been there, as far as the reader looking to lose 100 pounds. And, I have literally been there, as far as Gina working out at that same campus rec center. The gym culture, especially in sunny warm places used to be more intimidating to me since people keep up with their tans and tight tummies year round. The best way I found to get around any negativity I might feel about that kind of gym environment was selecting a time to work out that fit with my schedule and tended to be less busy. I worked and went to school, so I found the gym at 8 pm was a quieter place. Also, I picked machines that had more space and were less front and center. As far as clothes to wear, I stuck with fitted bottoms so I could easily move and a tank top layered with a roomier t-shirt. That gives you the comfort of having everything held in place with a little extra modesty over top.

  9. Therese on April 28, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    To the reader who has over 100 lbs to lose and is feeling self-conscious at the gym: you are amazing! I am always in awe and so impressed when I see people coming to the gym for the first time in a long time. A commenter above said that once you lose the weight, you will gain so much respect. I (respectfully) disagree. Every single day you go to the gym and face those fears you should gain a little more respect for yourself. I’m proud of you for taking the first step!

  10. nicole on April 28, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    Target is great for workout clothes! Sure, they look cheap sometimes, but they are cheap! I just bought an obnoxiously bright shirt last night for only $10- got to love that!

    • Ashley on April 28, 2011 at 3:03 pm

      I agree with Target!! The C9 by Champion brand is great for cheap options!

  11. Kate on April 28, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    Gina, what is that nail polish color your are wearing? I love it!

  12. Chelsa on April 28, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    I remember feeling that way before I lost a bunch of weight too years ago. I just over came it on my own as I became more and more proud of my body. You give such positive advice I wish this blog was around when I was losing weight. Anyhow little white dogs are the BEST. I have one too 🙂

  13. Nacho Lindsay on April 28, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Believe it or not, I do workout in between nacho sessions. Having cute workout clothes is just another motivator to get your butt to the gym!

  14. Cat on April 28, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Another good place to buy more cost effective workout gear that is cut in generous sizes is Old Navy. Seriously, they have some cute new stuff coming out!

    Also, as a trainer, when I see someone working out that has a sig. amount of weight to lose, I totally have that same desire to hug them and tell them how awesome they are doing!

  15. Michelle on April 28, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    Before I reached my goal weight, when I was about 30 pounds heavier, I wore Old Navy workout stuff all the time, and they have a lot of size options (up to XXL, I think). I also especially liked their yoga pants!

    • Danielle (Shrinking and Studying) on April 28, 2011 at 5:40 pm

      I agree 100% The yoga pants with the extra wide waistband that you fold over is super comfy and keeps all your wobbly bits tucked in so it’s flattering too! =)

  16. Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) on April 28, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    “Every time I see someone who is working out to take charge of their health, I want to hug them, tell them I’m proud of them, and to stick with it. But then, I’d be a creeper, so I refrain” – I feel the same way!! When I started going to the gym regularly to take charge of my health I was extremely self conscious. The closest gym was across the street from UC Irvine and there was a ton of fit people there, esp in the evenings when I was able to go after work. My bf (now husband) kept repeating to me that I should be proud of myself for getting in there and making a change & also that no one was looking/ starring. Over time I began to lose weight and felt more comfortable with myself and started to realize no one was looking… Now, when I see someone who seems like they’re new to working out, I want to tell them to stick with it and that they’re amazing for making a change in their lives. So in hind sight, I wonder… maybe if people were looking at me back in the day.. they were thinking the same things and not ‘what is she doing here’ (which is what I always thought they were thinking).

    For clothes: Target is a great place & I think Old Navy has some decent things too. They aren’t built to last, but they get the job done.

  17. Taylor @ Taylor Baker on April 28, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    Target is great! Their sports bras are comfortable and have cute colors, but don’t break the bank. When I first started working out I work crew-neck tshirts and gym shorts to work out in. It wasn’t ‘frumpy’, but it was a little more coverage!

  18. Kellyim on April 28, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    I also started working out during college at the U of A rec center and determined there are two people who go there: those who want to work out, and those who want to be seen. I learned to ignore the girls in the sknintight clothes with perfect hair and make up who just moseyed around the weight room and the machines without actually doing much. One time this cute guy who I knew got on the elliptical next to me (as I was sweaty mess) and wound up telling me how awesome I was because I totally smoked him on the elliptical. Nice!

    Honestly, I think most people are involved with their own workouts and, unless they’re total jerks, will only cheer you on. And who needs the jerks? There’s a path near my house where lots of people run and walk and every time I see someone who obviously needs to lose a bunch of weight, but is out there huffing and puffing, my heart does a little leap for them and I wish it wouldn’t make me seem crazy to tell them how great they are and how proud I am of them. I need to lose about 30-40 pounds myself and have only ever received positive reinforcement from other people.

    As for clothes, Kohl’s and Target are my go-to workout clothes stores. The stuff is inexpensive and can be really cute.

  19. mian on April 28, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    I love Marshalls and tj maxx for cheap workout clothes!! but i love target champion sports bra! i def love going to group exercise classes, everyone is so supportive and nonjudgmental.

  20. Lauren @ Sassy Molassy on April 28, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    Ooh, I Loved this reader question. Seriously, props to you for getting to the gym even though you feel self conscious.

    When I see people at the gym who have a lot of weight to lose, I always think “Wow, what an inspiration.” because I’d probably not have the guts to go workout in public. People most likely aren’t looking at you with bad intentions. Just keep reminding yourself that you’re there for you and forget everyone else.

    Some of my cheap workout gear has come from great sales at our local Nike store. If I see something I like, but don’t want to pay that price, I’ll wait a bit and see if it’s on sale in a month or so.

  21. E on April 28, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    When I first started working out I was crazy embarassed, not because I was overweight, but because I FELT out of shape, and I didn’t want to look like a clueless weakling. It’s ALL MENTAL. What helped me was 1) sticking to a cardio plan I brought for myself on a notecard and 2) doing toning/strength exercises at home with a DVD or somewhere else private, like an empty room with mirrors. This gave me confidence, and after a few weeks, I felt fine to “go public” with my workouts.

    During practice, my yoga instructor always says: “Don’t judge yourself. Nobody else is watching you, don’t judge yourself.” and I try to keep that in mind. Be nice to yourself (kind of the whole point of working out to begin with). Don’t let your own worries create a problem.

  22. Vicki on April 28, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    I am currently on my own weight loss journey and I too felt self-concious when I first went to the gym, but I soon realised that people don’t look at you or notice you, they are too involved with their own workout 🙂

    As for workout clothes, I just wear old sweat pants and one of my boyfriend’s baggy band shirts. I really don’t care what I look like at the gym. When I get to my goal weight, then I’ll buy some cute workout clothes.

  23. Steph on April 28, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    Hey Gina!

    Just wanted to say thank you so much for your suggestions on activities to enjoy in Tuscon. We had a blast hiking in the Sabino Canyon (8 miles round trip!) and really enjoyed the long weekend. We didn’t make it to a yoga class as we were having too much fun outdoors soaking up the rays and Vitamin D, which we are probably severely lacking here in Michigan. But we were able to hit some balls at the Tuscon Country Club and visit the Desert Museum. You’ve got some great restaurants here too! It definitely made us think seriously about relocating to a warmer climate and possibly to Tuscon.

    Thanks again!

    Steph and Brad

    • Fitnessista on April 28, 2011 at 10:33 pm

      that is so awesome! i’m glad you had a good time and enjoyed the sunshine 🙂

  24. Jaimie on April 28, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    I completely relate to the confidence issues at the gym. I’m a sophomore in college but had been a dancer for my entire life so I never really had to to much to keep in shape. This year, I came to terms with the fact that I had put on some weight and wanted to do something about it. I started eating healthier but didn’t lose much of the weight I had put on. It took me FOREVER to get up the confidence to go to the gym because I didn’t know how to use most of the equipment and didn’t want to be embarrassed in front of my peers. I realized that I had two options, be a little bit uncomfortable at the gym and look good in a bathing suit, or sit on my but all day and hate my body all summer. I decided that I wanted to be comfortable in my body and promised myself that I would start working out.
    It took a while, but when I finally got up the confidence to go to the campus gym I got on the elliptical and couldn’t figure out how to use it! To my surprise, the super fit girl next to me didn’t laugh, or roll her eyes but told me that you had to start peddling in order to select a workout! I felt a little bit silly but once I got going it wasn’t so bad. After a few weeks of working out I realized that I had more energy and was constantly in a better mood. While I’m not the same size as I was in high school, I am in better shape than I was in 6 months ago and feel a lot better about myself. I learned that very few people at the gym are there to judge because everyone is there to better their body. Once you get started and know what you’re doing it will be SO worth it!!!

  25. Laura @ LauraLikesDesign on April 28, 2011 at 1:35 pm

    I agree–TJ Maxx has the cheapest workout clothes. I love that I can get Nike branded tops and bottoms for a fraction of the price elsewhere. I find that when I put a little bit of effort into my workout attire, I have a better workout and end up staying at the gym longer because I feel more confident. The same goes for when I put a little more time into my appearance for work.

  26. Melissa on April 28, 2011 at 1:37 pm

    Hi! I was just curious what a serving of quinoa? I have googled and googled and havent found anything.

    Also, OLD NAVY has cheap work out clothes for all types.

    Thank you!

    • Fitnessista on April 28, 2011 at 3:16 pm

      1/4 c dry 🙂

  27. Dominique @ The Good Life on April 28, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    I ashamed to admit that I have actualy left the gym halfway through a workout because I felt so terrible about myself and felt like all the people in the gym were tracking every jiggle on my body.

    I have gained a little more confidence since I got back into lifting (and other forms of strength training), but what has really helped me is fixing up what I can and not thinking about what I can’t change. I’ll wear clothes that are flattering (helllo, Target workout gear) to my “assests” and disguise (hello, college t-shirt) my “trouble spots.” If I’m not working out first thign in the morning, I like to put on a little mascara and lipgloss because it makes me feel prettier. Because hey, if I can’t love my belly today, then I’m dang sure gonna do my best to love something else- like my eyes!

  28. Colleen @ The Lunchbox Diaries on April 28, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    Great post, Gina! When I started going to the gym about 3 years ago, I was so self-conscious. I have never been overweight, but I was the farthest from “in shape” as possible. I was too afraid to run on a treadmill because that’s the equipment all the hot, fit girls used. Finally, I realized that I just needed to get over myself and go for it. So what if I could only run for 5 minutes? No one else knew what that timer said – and as far as I know, no one was standing behind me with a stop watch 🙂

  29. Denise on April 28, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    Danskin line at Walmart is pretty cheap and reliable. When they are on sale they can be as cheap as $2-$3!

  30. Dhanya on April 28, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    I’ve been running for about 6 – 7 years now, 4 of those years being high school track and I almost always run in any old loose t-shirt and shorts (or tights in the winter). And my performance has been quite stellar without any fancy tops or crops. Don’t ever fall in to the trap that you need to buy ‘workout clothes.’ Loose t shirts do the trick just fine, and the rest are all just marketing gimmicks. In fact, while doing track, I ran in the rattiest clothes for a while, and not bothering about the outfit helps to take the attention off of what you look like and place it on how you do – which is what ultimately matters.

  31. Natalie S on April 28, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    Loved this post! I have some extra weight to lose from my second pregnancy, and have just started taking up running (well, jogging) and I always feel pretty self-conscious about how slow I’m going and how beet red my face gets when I’m finished. I have to remind myself frequently that no one really cares how I look and I have to start somewhere 🙂 All of these comments have been very inspiring and positive.

    Enjoy your second day!

  32. Maryz on April 28, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    When I first started going to the gym about 7 years ago, I needed to lose about 25 lbs. Of course everyone at the gym I was flooded with hot guys and girls. I was so self conscious that I started working out at 5 AM when not many people were there. Over time, I started feeling better about myself and would occassionally work out at different times. After I lost the weight I joined some classes and go when ever its conveniet. I did start to realize that most people are in their own little work out world and never even notice others around them.
    I too want to go hug all the newbies at the gym! It makes me so happy to see others taking control of their health!

  33. Ashley @ Feeding Ashley on April 28, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I agree you really have to not pay attention to what you think other people are thinking. It’s all in your head and they really don’t care.
    When I first started working out I had one tank top and one pair of black sweats I would wear. They don’t fit me anymore, but I love target and TJ Maxx they really have some great stuff for cheap $.

  34. Susan on April 28, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    Drawstring pants! J/k (kind of). I’ve found cute workout clothes at Kohls’ when they’re on sale, which is all the time. They have some plus sizes and some of the styles are very flattering, not too tight, but not frumpy either. I’m a firm believer in wearing workout clothes that you feel good in…it helps put a little extra wiggle in my step when doing zumba or hip hop class!

  35. Jess @moderngirlsguide on April 28, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    Glad to hear the job is going well. I really need to make myself some amazeballs, everytime you post about them I want them!!! I will do some this week!!!

    I also felt very uncomfortable in the gym. That combined with not being able to afford it means I do things at home via dvd, cross trainer, dancing (just putting MTV on and dancing like a goof) and doing things outside. xx

  36. alicia on April 28, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    As someone who loves to people watch, I would have to say that 1. I would notice a heavier person working out. 2. I would say to myself, “If they can do it, I can do it.” 3. While I may notice that the person is heavier, I would not think any less of them, I would think even more of them!

    I am a big fan of Who cares! While it is hard to get passed those initial fears, does it really matter what someone else thinks of you? Nope! Congrats on getting to the gym!

  37. Nicole on April 28, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    Hey Gina–
    I’ve been lurking around your blog for a while and finally decided this was a topic important enough to throw my two cents in. I used to be about 40 lbs. heavier and know all about gym confidence AND clothing issues. When I first started working out, I would try to go to the gym during off-peak hours. Having less people around meant less people could look at me and I felt more comfortable trying out new things (added bonus: lots of gyms are cheaper if you only use them during off-peak hours!) Of course that’s not possible for everyone, but it was a great way for me to start out. Another tactic is to completely drown yourself out in music. It was (and still is) one of my biggest workout motivators and it helped me forget about whoever I thought was looking at me. And there’s always the workout DVD…

    As far as clothing goes, Kohl’s is great. They have their own smaller labels that are super cheap and even carry some Nike stuff at a decent price. I’m also a big fan of outlets like Nike, Under Armor, and Lululemon for great stuff on the cheap!

    Just wanted to say thanks for keeping an awesome blog. Your great recipes, workouts, and daily motivation make it so easy to stay in shape 🙂

    • Fitnessista on April 28, 2011 at 10:32 pm

      thank YOU so much for reading and for saying hi! i need to check out the workout gear at kohls- i always forget about that store!

  38. Jessica @ Stylish Stealthy & Healthy on April 28, 2011 at 2:56 pm

    TJ Maxx is your friend FO SHO. I bought a lot my stuff there when I first started going hard before my wedding and thankfully, after losing about 30lbs and having to give away most of my workout clothes, I didn’t feel like I wasted a ton of $. Once you get to a point where you feel comfortable, you can start rewarding yourself with some of those cute little yoga tops and shorts 😉

  39. kate@hautetotsBOS on April 28, 2011 at 2:58 pm

    I like to invest in good workout clothes, that being said, Targets C9 line has decent stuff. Orrrrrr…check Ebay. I’ve scored some Lululemon, Under Armour, Nike, whatev for incred prices! And right now, having gained 6lbs of winter weight (all in the same spot too! UGH!) I’m headed out to Tar-jay to invest in ONE outfit to get me through that 6lb weight loss. Double the ugh!
    Your meal plans INSPIRE though! Keep ’em up fabulous fitnessista;D

  40. michele on April 28, 2011 at 3:00 pm

    Such great advice! 🙂 I am regularly at the gym and am in “decent” shape. I still wonder (on occasion) if I look OK…bottom line, I am there to be and stay healthy and KUDOS to anyone, regardless of shape and/or size who is there doing the same! Worrying about the opinions of others will never move us forward. Keep working towards a healthy lifestyle and as the blogs advises “eff” the mean folks 🙂

    I seem to find some great deals at Ross and Sports Authority (sale racks, of course!)

  41. Retha on April 28, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    I have to second, or 87th, Gina’s response. Remembering when I started going to the gym, I felt EXACTLY THE SAME WAY and I wasn’t seriously overweight. I hope that doesn’t come across as offensive because what I really mean is that I think we all feel that way in the beginning, no matter our size. Feeling like you stand out and all eyes are on you is normal but fear not! As Gina said, basically, we’re all there to do the same thing and I know that personally, I do not pass judgement on anyone. Conversely, I’m cheering them on, hoping they are enjoying the journey, feeling better every day, and am secretly willing them some extra willpower to stay strong, stay focused and stick with it…..that is, when I even take time to notice because I’m really just there focusing on my workout. 🙂 Best of luck and really, you’re there for YOU!

  42. P!nky on April 28, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    “Every time I see someone who is working out to take charge of their health, I want to hug them, tell them I’m proud of them, and to stick with it. But then, I’d be a creeper, so I refrain” I COULDN’T AGREE MORE! Sometimes I’ll even say out loud (softly) YOU GO GIRL/BOY! Seeing someone trying to change their life for the better makes ME want to work harder. Not as a competition with them, but I see them as an inspiration to PUSH MYSELF because the first steps of working out are the hardest….followed by THOSE LAST 5 POUNDS!!!!! {Where I stand currently}

    I am a petite former D1 athlete who has put on a few inches/pounds since college and I personally still feel like people watch me at the gym. But, in a ‘wow, she can only lift THAT MUCH!’ kind of way. I have gotten waaaaaaaaaaay less self conscious the past few years because I’m usually one of the FEW girls in my gym that actually show up to lift weights. I wear whatever I grab in the mornings, it’s the gym not a beauty contest.

    Ihope everyone has a great week! Great readers request post Gina! Good luck with your new job! xoxo

  43. Annalisa on April 28, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    Love the change your environment idea! Like some others said, I work out at the less busy times for comfort. I bought some black pants from lady foot locker years ago (and 80 lbs ago) that still seem to work. I never work out in shorts — just not comfortable and confident enough — same with tanks. I like cotton t-shirts (unless I am running or biking) – usually a sports team shirt. Invest in a good bra — I hate seeing ladies with their girls slapping their necks. I also recommend wearing MILD deodorant and NO perfume. Nothing makes me dislike someone than the girl who loaded up on fragrance and is ruining my workout as a result.

    I also agree with others comments that when I see someone overweight I am proud of them for starting the change process. I’m sad when I haven’t seen them for a while and wonder what happened.

    Take a class – get to know a few faces – that’s what kept me at the same gym for 3 years and 80 pounds later. I hid in the beginning but then LOVED knowing some people and it made the gym like family.

  44. Sheena on April 28, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    I am currently in the process of losing weight and also didn’t want to invest major moolah into fitness gear that (hopefully!) won’t fit in a couple months. I got a two good Nike sports bras at TJ Maxx for $12.99 each along with a couple workout tops and capris. I got capris since I am also curvy now and felt that they were the most physically flattering, are made of wicking material so that they stay dry, and also “hold” everything in! I also got some nice workout tops from the clearance rack in the workout section at Macy’s – I bought mine when they had additional 40% off to maximize my savings. My local Dillards also has a good workout gear section so if you go when they have additional 30% or 40% off clearance, you are sure to find some sick deals! Since I only have two good sportsbras, I try to wear them twice before washing them. I know it sounds gross, but I let them air out overnight and they are totally fine to wear for one more workout. I figure washing them less makes them last longer as well!

    To “fit in” and get over my uber-self consciousness, I just rock out with my iPod/iPhone. Getting your sweat on while wearing those white headphones makes me feel like a seasoned gym rat!

  45. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on April 28, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    When I first started losing weight, I mostly just wore old oversized t-shirts to the gym. I had a ton from old concerts, school, sports teams etc. I didn’t really spend any money on gym clothes until I was at the weight I wanted to maintain! And now I like to go hog wild on spending on gym clothes. 😉

  46. ellalinea on April 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    great great post! I usually spend no money on workout gear? the most expensive thing is my garmin forerunner 305 and the rest is all within the 10-30 dollar range.. It’s just to get sweaty in, i’m not there to look nice but to get a nice workout 🙂

    But If it’s your job ( like you, teaching classes) I would invest in some nice workout gear.. You’ll be wearing it everyday 🙂

  47. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) on April 28, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Wow, Gina, great questions and I am loving reading through everyone’s comments. Bet your iphone/email is blowing up while you’re at work with all the great comments 🙂

    Going to the gym…I never notice other people unless they are doing something to call attention to themselves, i.e. grunting in the free weights area, sighing and moaning in yoga class, sweating so profusely all over the cardio machines that it’s a puddlefest in their area, or things like that. Basically, I am in my own zone and anyone else who’s serious about their own health and fitness is too. 99.9% as you said arent paying attention. There is always going to be that .1% who stares. Whatever. Can’t change that but it’s not the majority, at all.

    Hopefully the readers are inspired to get their workouts on!


  48. bojana on April 28, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    That really is a great topic! I wish i read it when I was starting out in a gym 🙂 First time i went to work out, I was the worst – i was all confused, I lacked self-esteem and I was wearing clothes that were just, oh, wrong fitting. And i kinda felt bad the second time, and the third time too. But after a while I just got focused on what I was doing and was not spending half of the time checking myself in the mirror to see if my shirt went up too much or if the line of my panties were showing … And after some more time I felt proud if people were watching me – ‘coz I was giving it my best! And I even got comfortable enough to let out a growl or two if I was lifting something heavy.

    And i must admit, i still sometimes judged myself and others by how they look, until couple of months ago when I was running and a lady, who did not look fit at all – ran pass me like the wind. That was really an eye-opener 🙂

    So all you ladies (and gents 😉 ) , who are giving your curves a fit makeover, feel proud! You have the willpower to do it and when us other curvy, or skinny or whatever kind of ladies see you sweat your booties off – we feel proud too 🙂

  49. Sara @BakingandWine on April 28, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    Oh man. When I first joined a gym it was terrifying. The employees were so positive though that after about 2 weeks I learned to just get in there and do my thing. After about a month I realized that nobody else in there gave 2 craps about what I was doing. I found it best to just take my iPod and focus on ME and not if anyone else was looking at me.

    In terms of the clothes, as a big girl, I had this issue at first as well. I actually only bought 2 pairs of crops and a really good sports bra. Then I just wore my old t-shirts. And even though it was kind of embarrassing wearing those tight, stretchy work out pants at first, I came to find that they were really the most comfortable thing to wear. Baggy pants in the gym just don’t work for me.

  50. Roselyn on April 28, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    This was me 2.5 years ago. I had just had my second baby and was WAY overweight. My area had an all-women’s gym, which helped out a lot. I went in the morning, where a lot of the women were stay at home moms also trying to lose weight and older ladies; I never felt self-conscious or intimidated. As far as clothing goes, I felt better in nice workout gear, so I bought the majority of my stuff from Target’s clearance rack, as well as Old Navy. I didn’t go overboard, just a couple pairs of pants and several shirts and I was good to go for the week. I did invest in sports bras though, but only bought 3.

    But I agree with you, 99.9% of the time, people are too into their own workouts to really think about anyone else. And, I, like you, have had the urge to hug people at the gym that are trying to better themselves. 🙂

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