Exercise anxiety comes in lots of forms.
Take, for example, anxiety that comes from bringing our not-entirely-culturally-ideal bodies to the gym. We all have it. We all can work through it, and not by avoiding all mirrors everywhere forever (the mirror is form’s best friend because it shows that we might be mistaken when we think our knees are staying in line with our toes in a squat or that our back is straight in a plank…). We can focus on what we are doing, not on what we look like doing it. Maybe our bodies are not what we want them to be yet, but here we are in the gym working toward our goals. Also, we are not so important that everyone is looking at us. The rest of the world is focused on their own issues, and only jerks (a.k.a. violators of my Rule 1) will scoff at our imperfections. Do we really want to let the jerks control our behavior? Nope. Further, we can laugh. I think that Zumba was invented for just this reason. I laugh at myself all the time, sometimes for singing along with the radio, or for dancing in the kitchen, or for getting caught doing those things, or for making grimaces at myself in the mirror when I am lifting weights. It is hard to be anxious and laughing at the same time.
Then there is performance anxiety. Who are we to think we can do this hard workout? We are awesome people attempting the impossible and we darn well might do it, buddy. As I say all the time, we are approximating our way to greatness and we will get there. Maybe today we won’t lift that big old barbell, but we’ll be closer than if we don’t try. It is not our fault if the barbell refuses to cooperate with our brilliant plans. Some day soon, it will be more compliant because we will keep trying until we get there.
We are not racing. We can pause whenever we need rest. We can keep breathing and keep coming back.