Stepping into the gym for the first time can be a daunting and intimidating feat without the added pressure of doing it all alone. Below are key tips for beginners starting their fitness and exercise journey.
Keep reading to see 5 of the best tips to help you feel comfortable heading into the gym alone. Think of this as your gym guide for beginners.
1. Schedule An Induction
If you’re a complete newbie to the gym an induction with a trainer is a great way to get started. This will get you comfortable with all the equipment and the gym environment. You’ll learn how to use the equipment safely and learn the layout of the gym. There is no such thing as a stupid question, so ask the trainer anything that comes to mind regarding the equipment, certain exercises, whatever it is. Basically, an induction is a great way to get your feet wet and feel more comfortable.
2. Set SMART Goals
Setting yourself goals will help give your gym sessions purpose and keep you on track. They’re also great motivators to get you to the gym on days you’re not feeling it (trust me, everybody has those days).
SMART stands for; Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timed
Examples of simple smart goals are: “I will walk 10,000 steps every day for 5 days” or “I will go to the gym for 30 minutes 3 days this week”.
Starting with an action and something small is a great way to start. It will help kick start some momentum. These can be progressed over time to 11,000 steps a day or 45minutes in the gym. Choose something you enjoy, it’ll make it easier.
3. Try A Fitness Class
While this may seem like a big leap, a lot of classes are geared towards beginners. During your gym induction ask the trainer about the classes and if there are any that the trainer would recommend based on your goals. Classes are a great way to introduce yourself to different exercises while being coached by a trainer ensuring you can perform them safely and comfortably (as comfortable as a burpee can be). Classes are a great way to meet other people who are also new to the gym.
Exercising as part of a class might do more than just provide you with a community to work out with too. The Journal of Social Sciences found that with exercise, participants gravitated towards the behavior of those around them, meaning you’re more likely to achieve the goals you’ve set in the company of others.
4. Go When It’s Quiet(er)
Showing up to the gym when it’s busy can be overwhelming and possibly intimidating for some people. However, if someone’s using the equipment you have planned to use it’s not uncommon to ask, ‘how many sets do you have left?” and then ask if you can use it after them. If you’re not quite ready for that just yet, a quick Google search will sometimes tell you when your gym is at its busiest. Plan your gym sessions around the quieter times so you can have first pick of the machines.
5. Have A Plan
Make sure you know what you’re training before you even step into the gym. Have a workout plan and take notes of all the equipment you’ll need to complete it. If you’re unsure you can always ask the gym trainer for recommendations. Google and YouTube can be great sources to research the best exercises to train specific body parts and energy systems.
Stepping into the gym for the first time can be a daunting and intimidating feat without the added pressure of doing it all alone. To recap our 5 tips, book an induction with a trainer, set SMART goals, try a fitness class, plan your sessions around quieter times, and have a plan for every workout. With these 5 tips you’ll be well on your way to starting your fitness and exercise journey.