Starting a personal training routine is an excellent idea whether you are on a new year's resolution or developing a healthy habit. However, going to the gym for the first time can be daunting and intimidating, and most people don't know where to start. Read on to learn tips and guidelines for gym newbies for a fun, safe, and effective workout routine.
Get Doctor’s Clearance
Starting an exercise routine is a significant step with massive effects on the body. As such, it is best practice to talk to your doctor to clear you for workout. While most healthy people can exercise safely, others may need to avoid specific exercises due to their health history.
For instance, people with existing medical and heart conditions and those who have recently undergone surgery may need to exercise slowly. Another example are nursing mothers who have recently given birth. They should also consult their doctors on which types of exercises are best suited for them to recover from delivery.
Make Realistic Goals
Many beginners make the mistake of setting vague fitness goals, such as getting in shape and losing weight. While such objectives are good, they are too general and unmeasurable. The best fitness goals are definite, attainable, and trackable. For example, you can aim to lose five pounds in three months, do 25 pushups in a row in two months, or master three yoga poses in a month. Accomplishing goals is a big motivator and will help you stay on track.
Work with a Professional Trainer
One of the most significant challenges for new gym goers is not knowing where to start, and a professional trainer becomes handy. Although hiring a professional trainer is an additional cost, you get support, motivation, education, and accountability. Newbies harness the following benefits by working with a pro.
Work out consistently since you are accountable to someone. You also develop a workout schedule –daily, weekly, or monthly.
A professional trainer has extensive expertise to help you determine the most effective exercises, especially for people with specific conditions and injuries. They also teach you correct positioning to optimize results and avoid injury.
Develop an individualized fitness plan depending on your physical ability, experience level, location, and budget.
Create realistic and attainable fitness goals.
Learn different exercise varieties to prevent burnout and boredom.
Get nutritional advice and develop good habits to amplify workout results.
Invest in Gym-appropriate Clothing
Appropriate clothing is a fundamental part of a personal training plan. Go for comfortable and supportive clothing that keeps you cool and enhances your mobility. Also, pick fitting clothes, as oversized and loose clothing may get caught in gym equipment. Good options include gym leggings, shorts, fitted trousers, and lightweight t-shirts.
Remarkably, invest in a good pair of shoes. Flip flops, ill-fitting and years-old shoes won't work –they hinder your workout and increase the likelihood of injury. Opt for stable, comfortable, lightweight trainers with adequate support and cushioning. Do not forget your gym bag, which should have a towel, water bottle, workout plan, shower bag, change clothes, and lock.
Learn Gym Etiquette
Basic gym etiquette includes;
● Be timely for training sessions and classes
● Put everything where it belongs –machines and accessories
● Refrain from dropping weights –it is unsafe and distracting
● Clean up after yourself; wipe machines, floor mats, and barbells after use
● Respect personal space and time
When new to exercising, it is best practice to start small and avoid going too hard. Overdoing things on the first day increases the chances of injury. Don't feel the need to prove yourself in the gym by using all the available machines and weights.
A good workout starts with a warm-up to prep your body for exercise and minimize injury risk. A good warm-up also reduces the probability of pulling muscles when exercising and building up lactic acid, resulting in painful cramping. Knee lifts, shoulder rolls, knee bends, and heel digs are a good place to start for first-time gym goers. Working with a professional trainer can also helps] to craft a proper warm-up and cool-down routine.
Also, the trainer designs a good workout routine with appropriate frequency, intensity, time, and type. While it can be tempting to spend all your gym sessions on the elliptical machine as a newbie, do not hesitate to try personal training or classes. They are fun and an opportunity to explore new exercises.
Personal training has its strengths and challenges, good and bad days. There are days you don't want to go to the gym and
would rather lay on the couch all day. Even seasoned gym goers have good and bad days. The secret is to stay focused and consistent. When results take too long to materialize, keep pressing on and don't give up.
The first day at a gym can be overwhelming and stressful, from the new faces to unfamiliar machines and inside lingo. Luckily, the tips and guidelines above ensure an enjoyable first-day experience to jumpstart your fitness journey. The most important thing is to get started, stay consistent, and have fun.
If you'd like some accountability and support to help keep from falling off track, then give us a call or book your free Transformation session (Available only at our Austin Texas location). At that session you will do a detailed consultation, a short workout, and then your trainer will put together a plan for you to achieve your goals. Click here to get started!