First time joining a gym- any advice?

posted 3 years ago in Fitness
Post # 3
Member
11722 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

No one is watching or judging you.  Seriously.  People get so wrapped up in this idea, but everyone else is there to get their work out in, and leave.  No one cares whether you’re walking 3mph on a treadmill or running 10mph. 

Ask for a tour of the gym, so you can find out where all of the machines are. 

If you can afford it, do a personal training session so you can learn how to appropriately use the weight machines and free weights.

Post # 4
Member
3420 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

@abbie017:  +1

Do not be afraid to ask the trainers to show you how to use machines and what workouts will suit your needs best!

Post # 5
Member
1662 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@justjade:  True! Nobody is judging you. If you see a fitness nut watching you, they’re probably just thinking how awesome it is that you’re there. Source: I’m one of those people and I want to cheer everyone on. Best of luck! This really could get fun. 🙂

Post # 6
Member
365 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2013 - The Fox Hill Inn

Some gyms offer an introductory training session, if your gym does definitely sign up! It will help ease some of your anxiety witwounding unfamiliar equipment. If you’re concerned about people judging how you look, consider working out at less peak times (where I am, fewer people workout before work than after). 

Get a good set of headphones for working out and make some playlists (or an awesome pandora station). You’d be surprised how fast your workout goes when you re cranking music you love. It will also help you tune other people out. 

Post # 7
Member
4998 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

@justjade:  A few responses to your post then tips:

  • Don’t worry about being overweight: no one is there to judge you and if they have the energy to do so then they’re not working hard enough.
  • Don’t worry about being unfit: we all start somewhere (and for many of us that’s being completely unfit).
  • Don’t worry about not knowing how to use the machines: that’s what the trainers and staff are there to help with, they should be offering an induction for their own liability purposes.

Tips:

  1. Train like a guy, look like a goddess. Focus on lifting weights (kettlebells, barbells and dumbbells rather than machines) and then do cardio.
  2. Don’t focus on running when you’re still overweight and unfit. It’s really, REALLY hard on your muscles and joints.
  3. Book a few training sessions to help you get a good programme together. Focus on low reps with weights that are heavy for you (it won’t make you bulky)
  4. Yoga is awesome, no matter what your other goals are. It works in well with running, cycling, strength training, sports… pretty much everything.
  5. Carry a little microfibre towel to mop up sweat (everyone sweats).
  6. Find a friend who will be your gym buddy. I use my husband as my buddy/spotter and it makes the gym so much more fun for both of us!

Post # 8
Member
2042 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@justjade:  Dont worry about it!  No one is looking at you. Trust me.  I feel like that when I join a new gym and then I realize that everyone is zoned out watching tv, listening to music, or watching a movie on their cell phone! <- well thats what I do!!! I hate working out cardio for long periods so I watch my tv shows on Netflix.  It passes time by faster than music for me.  Also, take it slow.  Dont go for one hour cause you think that should be your minimum.  If you are over it in 20 mins, get off and do something else.  You dont want to force yourself to stay longer than you want to.  Try all the machines and figure out which ones you like the most.  I personally like the treadmill and elliptical.  When you start seeing progress either on the scale or in your clothes it will give you more ‘energy’ at the gym.  Pinterest has A LOT of awesome beginners workouts for gym machines.  I follow a few of those. 

Post # 9
Member
2516 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

@justjade:  Nobody is looking at you, like everyone else says. 99% of the people in there are looking at themselves 🙂 so no need to feel self concious, seriously. 

A lot of gyms offer a free personal training session for new members, so if yours does, take advantage of that and have them show you how to use the machines

Good Luck! And I repeat- nobody is looking at you 🙂

Post # 10
Member
941 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

If you don’t know how to use the weight machines or free weights, ASK! Do not risk doing exercises wrong and seriously injuring yourself. 

Post # 11
Member
457 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I would only be looking at you and judging if you don’t clean off the machines after using them. There was a meme I saw somewhere that said there are two types of people in the world: those who clean off the machines after they’re done using them and the worst people in the world. 🙂 

Other than that, I agree with what the rest of the people have said so far. If you can, try out a bunch of different gyms – they’ll all have different vibes and clientele. You need to find a place where you feel comfortable. or at least as comfortable as you can be when you’re sweating all over the place. 

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