What you should know before going to the gym

Have you ever been at a point in your life when you realize that your developed habits are not working for you? Maybe you realized that you spend a bit too much time binge-watching Netflix and ordering take-out. This awareness is the first step to reaching your fitness goals. This realization often sparks the flame for people to begin on their health and fitness journey. The next step after having that epiphany is taking action. For most, this involves going to the gym and signing up for a membership.

 I worked as a personal trainer at a gym, and part of the job was signing up people for memberships. I noticed a pattern in the success rate of the new members coming into the gym. It was surprisingly straightforward. Those who would come to the gym to sign up with their gym clothes on, ready to work out minutes after signing up, are the ones who stay consistent and are more likely to achieve whatever they are setting out to do. And on the other hand, I noticed that almost half of the people I signed up I would never see again. I would look at the attendance history and notice that they have not scanned their card since they signed up a month ago. These are the ones who would not come prepared to work out at that moment. 

The key to success is taking action right now and staying consistent. But how do you get started on your journey when you do not know anything about health or fitness. This article will break down everything you need to know before stepping foot into the gym from a personal trainer and health advocate’s perspective. Everyone deserves to feel comfortable in their bodies. My goal as a personal trainer has always been about helping people feel confident. Some people simply do not go to the gym because it is an intimidating place if you are a beginner. This article intends to provide you with a few fundamentals to give you the confidence you to need to get started in the gym. 


It is essential to ask for help.

Asking for help can be an adversary to overcome itself, but you will have to get over it as a beginner in the gym. The reason why I state this first is for two reasons. The first reason is that the equipment at the gym can be dangerous. It is essential to know how to operate it to prevent injury.  Second, because you need to nail your form before you begin to lift, it will have long-term effects on your body if you do not take this step seriously. The gym staff is there to help you with any questions that you may have. Don’t be afraid to ask for assistance with a machine. If the gym doesn’t already offer it when you sign up, ask for a tour. They want you to succeed, but they do not know what your fitness level is. Communicate your goals with the sales representative or trainer that signs you up. They should be able to offer you advice even if you do not want to hire them as a trainer. And if you do have interest, they will then be able to assist you in matching you with a most aligned trainer with your goals. If you do not ask them questions, they are at the computer answering emails. Most staff members would be delighted to help you in any way that they can. Do not hesitate to ask questions. 


Act confident, and no one will question you.

One obstacle I had to overcome when I first started was thinking that everyone in the gym is watching and judging me for being a beginner. The reality is that people go to the gym because they are there to work on themselves, which is the exact reason why you are there as well. They are not watching you and judging you; if anything, they probably think you are doing that to them. So relax. Stay in your lane and remember that you are there to become a better version of yourself. The only way people could even think about judging you is if you appear as though you don’t know what you are doing. Like I said, ask as many questions as you can. I realize that some people are just not comfortable with doing that. The alternative is to watch a YouTube video on how to operate that piece of equipment. There are tons of channels on YouTube that break down the fundamentals of each piece of equipment. I recommend this playlist of videos by Naomi Kong: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYdx6ammdwU&list=PLv-AOD6iOZkgFrDePPAkr7CfnTWfL5rtm


You can save money.

If you are concerned about the price of a gym membership, there are options for you. As I mentioned before, most employees or gym owners are there because they want to help. Before I became a sales representative and trainer at the gym, I was a college student. I did not have much money, but I wanted a gym membership. Looking at the prices of places in my area, I knew I had to have a minimum of one hundred dollars for membership fees, monthly dues, and an access card. I set aside the money, knowing that it would be worth the investment. The employee at the gym asked what I did for work, and I told her I was a student. Without hesitation, she said, “why didn’t you just say so? I will waive all of the start-up fees and give you your first month for free.” I was shocked to find out they offered this kind of discount as their page had no mention of student discounts. And even if you are not a student, there may be other discounts you qualify for outside of your insurance benefits. A lot of gyms will offer a hero discount. A hero discount may include but is not limited to the following: veterans, teachers, law enforcement officers, nurses, firefighters, and paramedics. Check to see if you qualify to save money! 


If you found this article helpful, share it with a friend and read my recent article on losing weight with minimal effort: https://bellaireer.com/losing-weight-with-minimal-effort/