There are many people starting into fitness every day. You may even be one of them. If you are like myself then you have probably started up and dropped off many times throughout your life. It’s hard staying with it all the time with a busy schedule, kids, and all the stress in your life.
I am about to start all over again so I thought I would document some of the things that I will be doing, or you should be doing when starting for your first time or if you are re-entering the gym world. Some of these steps may not be in the order you would do them in but this is how I would follow them.
Go to your Doctor
Here is the most important part. Make sure you are checked out by your doctor and let him/her know what your plans are for working out. If your doctor doesn’t give you the “ok” then maybe it’s time you start getting off the couch, drop the snacks and start walking more.
Join the Gym
Here is the part that hurts your pocket book the most. You can workout at home for free if you want. I’ve gotten some great results either way.
Gym Selecting tips:
- Don’t pay for a full year if you don’t think the gym is going to be around that long. You may save a lot this way but just beware. I’ve seen many gyms come and go. If it looks a little too empty that may be a sign of things to come. If they have extra services make sure to see which ones are included with your membership. Sometimes classes may be an extra fee.
- Hours of the gym. Some people like to workout at odd hours so make sure it’s open when you want to use it. Many gyms are 24 hrs these days but you are paying for it.
- Equipment. I’ve been to some pretty crappy gyms with old equipment. Nothing against the old equipment but if it’s not safe then that’s not good. Check out the equipment to see that they have what you want to use.
- Ask Friends. This is your best resource. Find out what gym your friends and family go to and what they think of it.
- Personal Training. If it’s your first time working out then you need someone to teach you how to do the exercises that are included in your workout as well as show you how to use some of the funky machines they have now.
- Day Care. Some parents aren’t able to go to the gym because they need someone to watch their kids. This is also a good option for stay at home parents that want to do their workout during the day rather than leave it to late at night.
- Workout Programs. Several gyms will have workout programs like bootcamps, trx classes, aerobics classes, bodypump, yoga, spinning and others. If you like to use cardio programs then you should choose a gym that has these programs at times that you are able to use them.
Ok back to your fitness program, after checking with your doctor and joining the gym your next step will be to select a workout program.
How are you going to know if you are benefiting from your efforts? Take pictures, measure your height, weight, waist, arms, chest, shoulders, thighs, calves, forearms, neck and hips. You can even get a body fat calliper to measure what your body fat is.
Some gyms will also have someone that can do an assessment for you at a charge if you aren’t capable of doing it yourself.
Set your Goals
If you are starting to workout then it must be for a reason. Your goal can be fat loss, muscle gain, inches lost, endurance or the amount of weight you want to lift. By setting goals and writing them down you will have something to strive for.
Select a Workout and Diet Program
This is one of the most difficult decisions you will make. Selecting the wrong program can set you back months. Some of the questions you should look for the answers to when selecting a program are:
- Does it include diet and workouts?
- Are there descriptions and pictures or videos to demonstrate the exercises?
- How long is the program good for? Can you reuse it again?
- How many days is the workout? How many hours a week?
Take some time to read through or learn your workout program so you can try out the exercises before you start the program. Start using lower weights or performing longer cardio workouts each day. DON’T start off full blast.
If you are unfamiliar with exercises that are in your program then an option for you may be to pay for the services of a personal trainer so they can go through your program with you to teach you the exercises. This would be cheaper than hiring a personal trainer for several months.
Those are just some of the tips you can use to start your new fitness journey. I’ll be releasing a new e-book later this week that will cover a lot more of this.