Finally made the decision to start exercising at the gym?
Your first time at the gym could be very intimidating, especially if you’ve never been in one before. But don’t worry too much. All you need is to prepare a bit and soon you’ll have the confidence to regularly hit the gym.
Step 1: Finding a gym
When looking for a gym, proximity, price, and quality matters. Get a feel for the gym you like by reading reviews online. Today, fitness centers usually have a social media page you could check out. See how involved the management is with their community. If you like what you see, check out the price and see if they offer personal trainers to help you get started. When signing up for a membership, do not hesitate to ask questions. Depending on your targets, you don’t always need to have a personal trainer. Find a gym that fits your budget and your availability.
Step 2: What to bring
Gym rats bring different kinds of items to the gym, but for first timers, it would be best to bring these essentials:
- Towels (at least 2) – to wipe your equipment down before use, and to use when lying down/sitting on the equipment, to prevent sweat from getting to the equipment.
- Water bottle – You’d get thirsty real quick, especially during your first time. Make sure that you have at least two in your gym bag. If you get dehydrated easily, pack something with electrolytes.
- Lock – Most gyms do not provide locks for their lockers.
- Sanitary spray – to disinfect the equipment/mat before and after you use them.
- Extra sets of clothes – you can expect your gym clothes to be soaked after use, so it’s best to bring at least two sets of clothes.
Step 3: Familiarize yourself with gym lingo
It’s always easy for newbies to get lost in translation, especially in a tight-knit community like the gym. Here are several terms that you need to familiarize yourself with:
- Reps – repetitions
- Gains – positive benefit from dieting and training right
- Prepping – preparing for competitions, workout, moving up (through diet & training)
- Stack – The combination of active ingredients in a supplement regimen that builds up to a single effect
- Stacking – adding more weights to beat your personal best
- Split – dividing muscle groups into different training days (to optimize muscle recovery)
- Sets –
more gym lingo to be posted soon.
Step 4: What to do
Exercise routines are different, but one thing remains constant – the warm-up. After getting your things sorted out, head to the cardio room where the treadmills are and start exercising, gradually building up speed as you go.
Note: cardio machines usually have a waiting list, especially during peak hours. Make sure that you spend the appropriate time so everyone can use the machine.
After warming up, you are free to use other machines in the gym. Depending on what you’re targeting, it’s best to start with a routine. There’s no single routine that works for all. If you have a personal trainer, you would likely start off with a few more cardio exercises before you move up. If not, you could simply observe and just do what everybody else is doing.
The rule of thumb is this: as a beginner, you have two options – cardio, or weight training. Endurance has much to do with cardio training, which increases the capacity of your body before you get tired. These exercises have more effect in burning fat than muscle building. Weight training, on the other hand, has much to do with increasing your muscle strength by increasing the tension of your muscles. These routines often lead to muscle mass development.
Consider taking a friend with you to the gym, especially an experienced one to show you the ropes. Also, if you’re working out to burn fat, consider taking the best fat-burning supplements like LipoGenix Elite to help you burn fat faster.