The Weakest Guy At The Gym.

Dear Davey,

I recently joined a gym and I’m completed embarrassed and ashamed to admit that I’m the weakest guy at the gym. Everyone is strong and fit, and I’m just a twiggy skinny guy that can’t lift much weight at all. I’ve been skipping the gym because it’s just to embarrassing. What’s your advice?


Bodybuilder Dan Decker Working Out In The GymHey Christopher,

I’m so glad that you emailed me because I have a few thoughts.

First and foremost, being the weakest guy at the gym is actually a blessing - not a curse. Being surrounded by people that are stronger and fitter means that you’re in a position to learn from their success. Don’t use the fit people around you to tear yourself down; use them to lift yourself up.

This is especially true for group fitness classes. I love being surrounded by strong, athletic class participants; beyond being inspired, it’s an indication that the class is effective. If I want to look and perform like these individuals, then I need to incorporate aspects of what they’re doing into my routine. Through this process, I can elevate myself to their level.

Befriend some of the people at your gym. Ask about their routines. Have them show you a few exercises. At the very least, observe some of the exercises that they’re performing and, if you feel safe, try them out for yourself. It’s a great way to discover what works for you.

And remember that even the bulkiest bodybuilder or the fastest athlete started somewhere. No one is born with bulging arms or a defined pecs; these transformations happen as the result of hard work performed consistently. None of these individuals will judge you for getting started; in fact, they’ve all been in the very same spot that you’re now in.

There’s one thing that’s certain. If you continue skipping the gym, you won’t reach your goals. If, on the other hand, you change the way that you approach your situation, you can accomplish great things.


P.S. If you want to add lean bulk, download Davey Wavey’s Foolproof Guide to Building Muscle. It’s a step-by-step guide to achieving the results you want!

About Davey Wavey

Davey Wavey is a certified personal trainer and YouTube sensation with more than 250 million video views. For Davey's fitness tips and secrets, sign up for his free monthly newsletter - or download any of his affordable and effective workout programs.


  1. Christopher, I know all those muscle heads can be intimidating. Try being the fattest guy in the gym! I suggest you try going to the gym at a different time. In my experience, the body builders don’t start showing up until about 10 am, and return around 2 pm. The spandex crowd shows up at lunch and around 5. So I go around 8 am, when it’s mostly seniors in the gym.

    If you can afford it, buy a training package to get you started and to have a commitment to someone else. That helps too. But just start! I guarantee that there are a lot of people envious of your lean body, so stop feeling self-conscious and start moving!

  2. Love this post, I have been in that same situation more than a few times in my attempt to bulk up and get big. Great perspective to have twisting a potentially daunting and negative situation into a motivational and positive one!

    Starting is always the biggest step but don’t be deterred, even just one day in to training you’re one day closer to your end goal and one day further away from what you once were. x

  3. I would be careful about watching what the big weight heads do and imitating their workouts. I see a lot of bad habits, dangerous form, being emulated at the gym. Much better to get a program done for you with a few sessions from a certified personal trainer, or at least, if you’re going to copy someone, copy a trainer.

  4. I used to feel like you did but two reasons I stopped worrying - 1] no one was born looking like that, and 2] playing volleyball helped being lithe rather than bulky.

    Still, my friends and I were able to squat more than a lot of guys at the gym because of our leg strength. And we we didn’t have pencil-thin legs like these guys with huge upper arms.

    Go to the gym for you, not for the other people there. In fact, when I see that overweight person on the treadmill next to me, I think, “Wow, s/he is making the effort - good for them! Keep it up!”