When you consider a lifestyle change such as joining a gym, always remember the first step is the hardest. Making that decision is hard, but can ultimately be a life saver or life-altering. Joining a gym can help with quality of life such as:
Ability to play with kids or grand-kids comfortably
The ability to live life to its fullest such as travel, outings with friends and family etc.
As you pick out a gym, first look for a comfortable environment that fits your personality. Demographics of a gym can be a huge key to your individual success. Another key factor is pricing. Does it fit your budget? Pay attention to monthly rates and specials, but also be aware and ask about hidden fees that some gyms slip in. Look out for sign-up fees, initiation fees, annual maintenance charges, etc. Not all gyms have extra fees, for example at Live F.I.T. we do not charge any hidden fees! The next item to be aware of is if your interested in classes. Is there an extra charge for those or are they included in your membership?
Once you’ve decided on a gym, check out all the options available to you such as classes, trainers and different equipment. Always be willing to learn something new and avoid getting into a rut. Keep your workouts fresh; it will keep you mentally focused on your physical challenges.
A common misconception about gyms is the notion that if I go, everyone will be staring at me and judge me. This couldn't be further from the reality. In most cases, the hardcore gym members that new people are intimidated by are so involved in their own training that they:
Don’t notice anyone else or
Love what they do and are more than willing to help and make you feel welcome.
Educate yourself on proper form of exercises and how to use the equipment, as well as proper gym etiquette such as putting your equipment back in its proper place and wiping down equipment when your done. Staff members and gym regulars are always willing to lend a hand. Find accountability partners who will keep you on task. Be aware of burn out! Sometimes when starting a new workout program you can be so excited and go everyday and work really hard… then comes the burn out. The burn out is when you're going too hard, too fast and getting tired or sore. This can lead to a few days away which leads to not coming at all. Much like anything start with moderation and ease yourself into this new lifestyle and gradually dig deeper.
Keep an open mind, stay confident and stay educated. Be consistent, but avoid that dreaded burn out. A little rest is good and needed to avoid injury. Good luck and Live F.I.T.