I have a confession. Remember how I got a gym membership and took that spin class of death? That was actually my second day of going to the gym. The first day I only made it to the parking lot. I parked, saw just how many cars were there, then got really nervous so I went home…
I was convinced everyone was going to stare at me and judge me because I clearly wouldn’t know what I was doing. Gyms are scary! Tons are super ripped people using machines without first staring at it for five minutes to figure out how to use it. Seriously, wtf are you supposed to do on half those things? Putting my fear (mostly) aside, I managed to brave the gym. I’m still not super confident, but I made it through the door. Here are a few tips to help you brave the gym.
Choose the right gym
The gym you choose has a major impact on your success. Do you like taking a bunch of classes? What type of price range are you looking for? How far away is the gym? These are things you need to consider. I promise you’re not going to want to drive further than ten minutes to go work out. It also might be cheaper to choose a gym that doesn’t offer a lot of classes, but if you need direction for you workouts, it might be worth a higher cost.
I need to have classes and a super short drive in order to get my butt to the gym. We decided to go for a higher priced gym, but it’s five minutes away and offers 200+ classes a month. I easily could have found a cheaper gym, but it would just be wasted money because it wouldn’t fill me needs.
Test out the gym before you commit
Many gyms offer a free pass for a day or even a week. This is a great way to see how the commute is and if you like the classes. You might find that the traffic is just too bad during the times you would be trying to get to the gym. Or there just aren’t any classes you like during the times you are available.
Don’t go during peak hours
This was my mistake. Remember how I drove to the gym, parked, said eff this and went home? Don’t be like me and instead go to the gym during less busy hours. Pretty much right after work hours and midday Saturday are busy. Try a morning workout and see how it goes.
Take advantage of their free one hour trainer session
Often when you sign up for a membership, you’re offered to schedule a free hour with a trainer. I’ll be honest with you, it’s highly likely they’ll use this hour to convince you to sign up for personal training sessions. However, that free hour is a great opportunity to learn how to use all the equipment properly. If you aren’t sure how to use the equipment, go into it prepared to turn down personal training sessions and ask all the questions about machinery you can think of. If working out is completely new to you and losing weight is a much needed goal, consider getting a personal trainer. Yes, they are expensive, but if you need to make a big change in your health, they can help.
Start out taking a class
Don’t go to the gym just to use the treadmill, you can just go outside for a run. Start out taking a class. Trying something new is fun, plus you don’t have to put any thought into what to do next. I also like classes because I feel like being around other participants holds me accountable. I’m not gonna cut the workout short because everyone will notice. It’s also a great way to make friends. When you have people who are expecting to see you, you’ll be less likely to skip out on going.
Do tell them you’re new
If it’s your first class, tell them. Trainers want to know who they’re working with. You’ll get much better direction and attention if the trainer knows you’ll need it.
Just go for it
Nothing worth having comes easy. Clique, but true. When I told my friend I was trying a spin class for the first time, she told me it would suck but it would never be as bad as the first time you do it. I feel like that applies to the whole gym. The first time you go feels very uncomfortable, but it won’t be long before you feel like one of the regulars.
How do you feel about gyms?
P.S. If you liked this post, you might also like these:
- How To Exercise When You Really Don’t Want To
- How To Become A Morning Person
- 5 Ways To Start Fresh Today