How to Conquer Your First Day at the Gym

First of all, congratulations on taking this big step, especially if you’ve been out of the fitness loop for a while. Hopefully, this will be the start of a great fitness journey. That journey begins with your first day at the gym. It can feel overwhelming to gaze out at the rows of resistance machines, free weights, and cardio equipment. Not to worry, you can do this with the help of the gym staff and with this article. Learn the top workout tips for beginners, and soon enough, you’ll be a gym pro!

1.It’s Okay to Feel Nervous

Starting anything new can feel nerve-wracking. Just think about the last time you started a new job, picked up a new sport, or even sat down to play a new video game. At first, everything felt awkward. You weren’t sure what to do and probably made more than a few mistakes. This is completely normal. Over time, as you’ve stuck with the job, sport, or video game, you became more comfortable, and your performance improved.

The same thing will happen at the gym. Every person you see at the gym, from the woman sprinting on the treadmill to the bodybuilder back squatting 300 pounds, was a beginner once, too. Like you, they had to learn fitness tips for beginners.

2.Take a Tour of the Gym

Every gym, including EōS Fitness, offers new members a full tour of their facility. Take advantage of this opportunity, as it will make going to the gym for beginners easier and safer. On the tour, a staff member will show you the different areas of the gym, explain the gym rules, and help you understand basic gym etiquette.

Take this opportunity to ask lots of questions. If you want to know how a machine works, ask the staff member to explain it. This is your chance to learn important gym tips for beginners.

3.Come to the Gym with a Plan

To avoid feeling overwhelmed during your first time at the gym, arrive with a plan. Figure out what machine you should use first, how many reps you should complete, and what weights you should pick. If you just play it by ear, you won’t make the most out of your time at the gym.

For some, that means writing down your full workout in advance, so you know exactly what to do. Other exercisers may feel more comfortable with a rough sketch. It’s a good idea to include:

  • How long you plan to be at the gym
  • What type of cardio you want to do
  • What muscle groups you want to work during resistance training

You can even put together a rep scheme and then choose the weights based on how you feel at the gym.

4.Begin with a Dynamic Warmup

One of the best workout tips for beginners is to start every workout with a dynamic warmup. Too many times, beginners walk into the gym and immediately begin chugging away on the elliptical trainer or pounding out reps on the resistance machines.

This can lead to injury. Instead, allow your body to warm up so that you can prepare it for the upcoming workout. Perform dynamic stretches slowly and mindfully. Feel your body warming up and your heart rate increasing. A good dynamic warmup for beginners can look like:

  • Five minutes walking on a track or treadmill
  • 10 inchworms
  • 10 burpees
  • 10 lunges
  • 10 front arm circles
  • 10 back arms circles
  • 20 jumping jacks

5.Include Both Cardio and Resistance Training into Your Workout

There are thousands of different exercises you can perform and a seemingly endless amount of different exercise modalities. In some ways, this makes exercising exciting. You never have to do the same workout twice.

On the other hand, it can feel intimidating for beginners who don’t know how or where to start. The best fitness tip for beginners is to focus on including both cardio work and resistance training into your exercise plan.

Cardio refers to any type of aerobic workout that elevates your heart rate and sustains that elevated heart rate. where you are able to continually breathe through the exercise. Good examples of cardio include:

  • Walking/jogging/running
  • Riding a stationary bike
  • Rowing on a rowing machine
  • Using an elliptical trainer
  • Swimming

Resistance training refers to exercise meant to improve the performance of your muscles. Performing bicep curls with dumbbells is a form of resistance training. So is doing pull-ups or performing a bench press. You can perform resistance training with:

  • Your body weight (pushups, sit-ups, air squats)
  • Resistance machines
  • Free weights (dumbbells, kettlebells, barbells)
  • Resistance bands

There are endless ways to design cardio and resistance workouts. To start, consider adding these four bodyweight workouts into your fitness routine.

6.Start Slow

If you’ve made a new fitness goal, you are probably feeling pumped to hit the gym and start transforming your body. Slow down, there! The goal is for you to turn your gym trips into a deeply ingrained habit. That means starting at a pace you can maintain and grow over time. If you start sprinting on a treadmill on your first gym visit, you’re more likely to injure yourself, and you’ll also probably be so sore the next day that you’ll never want to go to the gym again.

Any beginners guide to working out will tell you to start slow. The goal is to get your body used to performing more work than normal. Even if you stick to jogging on the treadmill and focus on lifting less weight, you’ll still get in a great workout and feel the results in the next day or two.

During your first time at the gym, focus on getting familiar with the equipment and using the right form. If you’ve never been to the gym before, then it may be a good idea to stick with the cardio equipment and resistance machines rather than trying to work out with free weights. As you become more comfortable with the equipment, you can begin increasing the intensity of your workouts and experimenting with free weights.

7.Try a Group Fitness Class

If you aren’t sure how to program your own workout or are worried about losing motivation at the gym, then consider signing up for a group fitness class during your first day at the gym. The beauty of a fitness class is that you don’t need to figure out your own workout. You follow the directions and example of the instructor. Plus, it can also be motivating to work out with other members of your gym. There is something to be said for having fun together!

If you do sign up for a group fitness class, let the instructor know that this is your first time so that they can keep an eye on you and help you set up. Do not feel the need to keep up with the instructor or other members. The instructor literally works out for a living, and the other members will be at many different levels. If you need to take a rest during the class or perform fewer reps, that’s completely okay. Everyone has been there. As long as you are feeling the burn, you’re doing it right.

8.Bring a Friend

During your first time at the gym, you may feel like you are sticking out like a sore thumb. The truth, of course, is that everyone else will be focused on their own workout. If you need a little boost of confidence and some extra accountability, bring a friend to the gym with you on your first day.

A good friend at your side can give you confidence and make it easier for you to gain comfort at the gym.

9.Sign Up for Personal Training

If you feel completely out of your depth or if nervousness is making it hard for you to go to the gym, consider hiring a personal trainer, even if it’s for a short while. A personal trainer will help you define your fitness goals and will then design a workout plan customized to your goals. Best of all, your trainer will guide you through each workout. This is a great opportunity to learn how to put together a workout. If you don’t know the difference between “sets” and “reps” or what “80% of your deadlift max” means, your trainer will teach all of it to you. Most importantly, a trainer will make sure you are using the correct form so that you can perform your exercises safely and get the most from your efforts.

As you begin to feel more confident at the gym, you may decide to go out on your own and take charge of your workouts.

You’ve Got This

Push through your initial discomfort and remember why you signed up for the gym. You want to be stronger, faster, and healthier. You want to improve your fitness and be the best version of yourself. With the help of these workout tips for beginners, soon enough, the gym will feel like your second home.

Don’t forget to take advantage of all the benefits your gym offers to new members. Grab a 7-Day Free Pass at your nearest EōSFitness to try the gym risk-free.

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