The start of a healthier lifestyle
Lets open this article with a huge congratulations on your choice to begin your new life as a healthier and more improved you! Starting anything new can be intimidating, never mind something as personal, and yes I use the word personal because self improvement is just that – a very personal journey.
I think the best thing to remember is that every single person in the gym that you are currently planning to attend (or may have already started to go along) has felt EXACTLY the same as you.RELATED: RECOMMENDED PLANS FOR YOU
Don’t be afraid to ask for advice
In my experience I have discovered that 99.9% of people move through life with kind intentions. That means that the vast majority of people are empathic to you.
Most people at an established gym will gladly root for any ‘new guy/gal’…….In fact it is one of my most honoured moments when I have the chance to meet a newcomer who asks me for advice.
Consider a personal trainer
Personally I always ask if they have enlisted the assistance of a qualified personal trainer who can help them learn the ropes, even if only for one session.
This intervention can make all the difference in the world with respect to you feeling like you can, at minimum, perform five or six exercises that empower you to feel oriented with the facilities.
Don’t be afraid to learn
I would also like to discuss a statistic – 60% of every member in any gym is performing exercises that are incorrect or unsafe. Truely! Don’t be afraid to learn. Even three properly and well executed exercises that you feel comfortable performing will make you feel ahead of the proverbial game.
Even the diehards can have “insecure” days….none of us are immune to it!
Take advantage of YouTube
Even though I really recommend a certified trainer to help you, if that is out of your budget you may consider finding some YouTube video walk throughs to show you the proper form for squats, lunges, chest presses and bent over rows…….Just three or four exercises with 3 sets of each exercise can be your full work out initially. Or you can check out the exercise video library here at WatchFit!
Suggested Newcomer Workout: Build your gym confidence
Warm up (10 min)
i) Unweighted Squats: Go low, as if you are sitting in a chair. x 3 sets.
So, 10 Squats then a 60 rest and then the next 10 etc.
ii) Chest Press: Go to one of the benches in front of the free-weight section and pick “lightesh” weight for your first day…..8-15 pounds. Perform 3 sets of chest presses.
If that weight is too light then select a heavier weight for the next time. Make sure to watch the video for proper form.
iii) Bent over row: Look up a video that shows you the proper format for a bent over row and perform 10 reps with a 60 sec rest and do that 3 times.
I also promise you will be pleasantly surprised that the big “muscle guy beside you” will most likely be enthusiastic to help you if you were to ask for his opinion in between his sets.
You are part of a supportive community
So remember, you can do it! The gym community is rooting for your success and with some consistency, learned knowledge and a Tiny Switches attitude, it wont be long at all before you feel like a gym veteran yourself.
P.S. Take group fitness class for your cardio, the instructors will demonstrate the correct way to do several exercises that you can then perform with confidence.
Read more from WatchFit Expert Shannon Leroux