When I asked what fitness equipment intimidates you at the gym, many of you said "the weight machines." One reason is that big, strong, sweaty guys hang out there, and as FitSugar reader AZDaisy put it, it's "Man Land." I can relate to what laellavita said — "I would feel like a wimpy little girl amid all of the testosterone." Also, tlsgirl understandably doesn't like it when guys stare at women when they use the weights.
So how can you move past feeling intimidated? Reader Jabbadoo has some great advice. She says, "I'm not intimidated by anything . . . because my trainer helped me become strong and smart about it all! Seriously, if you feel intimidated, work with a trainer a few times and ask a ton of questions. Then you will be completely confident on your own!"
For more advice from FitSugar gym-goers,
A wise plumeria9 says, "Come on girls! Don't let the men take over the entire weight room. Most guys are not there for the entertainment . . . If there is a piece of equipment that I am interested in using, I will watch people use it and see how they do it, then I try it and see if it's for me." Yes, you can learn a lot by watching others at the gym. Just make sure they know what they're doing, and use proper form.
I agree with what kclulu says as well: "Everyone looks dumb at some point at the gym if they are challenging themselves and trying new things. If you want to try a certain lift or exercise look it up on Google; they have a video of just about everything you can think of. That way you can learn the right form and for certain exercises you can practice a little at home, so you feel more confident busting it out in front of people at the gym."
As for those sweaty guys staring at you, syako says, "it's easy to ignore them." But if you can't, Lauren3185 suggests finding a gym that has a separate weight room for women. That way you'll feel more comfortable using the equipment knowing you're not being ogled.