Did you just finish signing up for your first gym experience? Here are some key tips all gym members should know to avoid a nerve-wracking experience, especially if you don’t have any friends joining you.
The sight of other people diligently working out can be intimidating, but don’t let it affect you. Keep in mind that you enrolled for your own reasons and that you should also work hard to achieve them.
First-day jitters are normal, but it doesn’t mean you have to be clueless on your very first day. Time is of the essence, especially since you’re paying for each of your sessions. To ensure that you will be ready the moment you step inside the gym, here are a few tips to get you started on your road to fitness:
Set Realistic Expectations For Yourself
People tend to set unrealistic expectations for themselves after enrolling in a gym. Most of them believe that losing weight is a given fact as long as you put in the effort. W
hile that is somewhat true, what they fail to understand is that you won’t lose all your unwanted pounds in just a short period of time. Weight loss is a gradual process when you work out.
Try to set achievable targets in your program so you can better encourage yourself into reaching them. For instance, a goal of five pounds lost on your first month is both sensible and plausible.
Additionally, some believe that the more you work your body, the better your chances are of shedding off extra kilos. This is both untrue and dangerous to your body.
Don’t work out for more than four hours per session, and always allow your body to rest and recuperate in between work-out days.
Overtraining yourself will only lead to worse work-out performances, lessened immunity due to fatigue and even increase your chances of injury.
Always Warm-up Before Exercises
The number one rule for gym members when working out: always do your warm-ups.
Warm-up exercises help your body get ready for working-out by getting the blood flowing through your system, and the repetitive movements help to warm up the muscles that you will be working out later.
Warm-ups also help improve your performance, as the increased body temperature improves your body’s flexibility and mobility, leading to more polished movements.
There are different warm-ups for different types of physical activity. Warm-up exercises are meant to serve as baby steps for whichever work-out program you will be doing later on, which means that you need to know the proper muscle groups to concentrate on so that your warm-ups will be effective.
You can do a little research online or ask one of the trainers at the gym to find out which warm-up exercises fit your work-out routine the best.
If you still want to know more then check out this helpful guide from Rec Xpress on the best warm activities you can complete before hitting the gym.
Learn Proper Gym Etiquette
There is an unspoken code of behaviour for gym- members, and it is important to know about it right on your first day. First, remember that all the other patrons at the gym are paying the same membership fees as you do, meaning you all have the same rights for each machine and equipment there is.
Beginners sometimes forget that they are sharing the gym with other people, and accidentally hog gym equipment all to themselves.
If you see that the gym is packed and a lot of people are in line for the machine you are using, the polite thing to do is to “work in” with the next person. Working in means alternating using the gym equipment as you rest in between sets.
This way, two people finish at once and the waiting time for the machine is halved.
Another rule that goes with sharing the gym: try not to disturb others as you work out. Everyone is paying for his/her time to work out, and it would be rude to be the reason why someone would be unable to maximize his/her session.
If you prefer working out with music, make sure that you are wearing earphones and not blasting loud music from your cellphone or media player.
All gym members should leave your cellphone in the locker to avoid picking up calls, or at least put it on silent if you can’t afford to miss a message. If working out with a friend, try to talk in a soft manner so as not to distract the people around you.
After using machines, always wipe them down so that the next person can use it without worrying about slipping or germs.
Wrapping Things Up
If you follow these tips, your first day at the gym should go quite smoothly, especially for a first-timer. If you can afford it, securing a personal gym trainer can do wonders for your fitness goals.