It’s not just a gym!
Gym life can be very simple or very complex. When you find the right gym for you, you will start to be drawn into the training culture! You will start to consider everyday activity around your training schedule. You will want to protect the investment you’ve made and start planning what you eat, reducing alcohol intake and you may even start getting some decent sleep.
These fitness benefits become significant health benefits and you will reap those rewards if you are sensible about your diet and training plans. We often just go to the gym to lose a few inches or pounds. We don’t really consider it social, it can be very intimidating to walk in as newbie for the first time.
However, good gyms and clubs will make you feel welcome from day one. Understanding what you want our of your membership is key. Challenging yourself to look at yourself and join the other members in a fun and engaging environment is really important if you are going to see any long-term health and fitness goals be sustainable.
Good gyms encourage, educate and have fun, lot of fun!
A lot of gyms will explain how to use the equipment and where the first aid kit and fire escapes are. The rest of it is not really about you! If you really do need it to be about you, tell them!
You’ll see that good gyms will take their time with you, ensure you are going to be safe and look after the kit. Some will offer extended inductions that will help you assess your ability and goals.
If they offer a programming course or free PT consultation, take it. It’ll be worth it to help you understand and clarify what you need to do to get going at the very least.
Creating your own Clan!
You will get to know many people in your gym. You’ll have the bond of training together, passing hints and tips about and share the odd joke and motivational grunt. You may pass them in the street and the wink or nod of the head acknowledges your shared adversity in the sweat box!
Your new gym buddies will become friends over time, but it’s unlikely you’ve been introduced properly! People will share their daily routines, stresses and jokes with you. A few will give more away. When away from the gym you may well be asked by someone else ‘who’s that?’ our answer will be ‘er, a guy from the gym’ as you’ve never asked their name! The truth is it doesn’t really matter, it’s about having a shared training goal or love of fitness.
Knowledge is Power
As a new face in the gym, the membership will know you are the new guy, even if you look the part. But if you don’t so what, the good members will pick a moment to come and have a chat and pass on some of their wisdom in relation to what you are doing. This is often nice and not meant to be anything other than to give the new guy some help. Caution: not all they say is correct for you, so just make sure you are safe and comfortable about what you’re doing and all will be well.
So long as the other gym members are friendly and offer you friendly advice you are likely to get on. Friendly members generally mean it’s a great place to train, learn and enjoy your sessions.
Don’t panic you are here to work out, not look good!
Walking into the gym can seem intimidating. Remember, we all made the same footsteps once a upon a time. You will look around and pick out the good bodies and completely miss the old sweat guy in the corner of overweight lassie doing there thing.
It’s natural to be drawn into the aesthetics, but those other guys are there for a reason too. The truly great gyms will make every size and shape feel welcome and their members will be a big part of that too!
It is perfectly natural to be apprehensive when you first walk in or even after a few weeks if you are not feeling motivated. The thing to remember is that most members don’t really care. They are usually involved in their own sessions to worry about what is going on around them let alone what you look like!
You don’t need to make every class
Remember gyms that are pay-as-you-go need you to fill their doors full. Membership style gyms don’t really need to. They already have your cash, but some will get greedy!
Remember for your fitness journey to be sustainable in the long term you want to be able to go to classes or the gym at a time that suits your schedule not theirs. Most gyms will have a good spread of classes through the day and they should be well placed to meet demand.
If their sales team have been on overdrive, the peak classes will be ram-packed, and you may need to set the alarm clock to book a slot! Only do that if that class is worth it! Otherwise you just enter the spiral of dissatisfaction and don’t hit your goals or meet your expectations.
Find a Gym that values your patronage and you their service. This can mean paying a little more. You are far more likely to nail your training goals than fighting over space in that class getting blurry eyed at midnight waiting for the booking system to open
Personal Space and Hygiene are not always high on other peoples agenda!
Wipe the kit down you minger, nobody else wants to sit, lay or grab through your sweaty puddle! There should be sprays and wipes available, take a towel if you want and mop that brow.
Not everyone will, some will just leak everywhere and all over the place! Don’t deal with it, go to the staff who should help educate the other members to consider other people.
You can never have enough gym kit!
It doesn’t matter how much gym kit you purchase, when you need it, it’s in the wash! T-shirts will never quite get the foosty smell off them and light colours turn murky and grey!
Your trainers will never be the same as the day you purchased them. They will become like an old pair of slippers; comfortable and you’ll have a strange attachment to them. Despite the fact that each time you wear them they get a little worse and little smellier!
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