When you walk into a gym, it can feel like the most intimidating place in the world.
Everyone looks great, they all seem to know what they’re doing, and there’s always that one guy who is just showing off with handstands and pull-ups.
We’ve all been there.
We asked around the office to find out what we all learned during our various adventures in fitness, some of which were more enduring than others.
Here are their words of wisdom...
Don’t wait, start now
Just as it says, there’s no reason why you’d be better off starting next week or next month. Also, the more you put it off, the less likely you are to do it.
Make it more convenient to work out
We've all had that 'I don’t feel like working out today' thought. The reality is, there are very few times in our lives when we actually feel like working out unless you’re a dedicated member of the #fitfam.
We tend to make excuses and if you’re sitting at home, the balance of convenience is against grabbing your bag, going to the gym, getting changed and actually working out.
Instead, we recommend only deciding if you’re going to work out after you put on your gym clothes and bringing your gear to the office with you to give you the added incentive.
Go slow at the start
Don’t run before you can walk. I made the mistake of pressing the ‘run’ button on the treadmill that started me at 6km an hour. After about 30 seconds, it felt like my lungs were on fire.
It’s cheesy but one of the inspirational slogans that stuck with me most is ‘no matter how slow you go, you’re still lapping everyone on the couch’.
Go at a pace you feel comfortable with and you’ll be more likely to come back again.
Classes may be the way to go
Some people prefer going to classes instead of just working out by themselves. You have the advantage of having a set time and date that you can plan around, you have someone telling you what to do, and you can go along with a few friends and make it a group thing.
Plus, a lot of classes are more fun that running or doing weights, like yoga, Zumba and Reformer Pilates.
A personal trainer could be helpful
A lot of gyms offer a free session with a personal trainer to get you started. The advantage to this is that they will give you a specific workout plan to help you achieve your goals, whether that’s to lose weight, improve strength or run a marathon.
Having a plan is a good way to build your confidence so that when you walk into the gym, you move around purposely and know what you need to do. It also keeps you on the straight and narrow on those lazy days.
Change it up
Doing the same thing over and over again is boring and repetitive, no matter how much you love it.
Try using different machinery, go for a swim instead, do a class, or even just do a dance workout at home.
Weights won't make you bulky
A lot of women are put off using weights because they’re afraid that they’ll develop muscular looking arms and legs.
But, as any body-builder will tell you, those things are hard to build and using weights is one of the best ways to burn calories.
Plus, you'll get super strong and feel like a badass.
Buy nice gym clothes
This applies for men and women. You’ll feel more confident if you know you look good and quality gear will be a lot more comfortable and durable.
Go on, splurge a little.
Have a good playlist
Some people enjoy listening to podcasts, some go to general gym bangers and others love running to aggressive rap music. Find out what gets you pumped and get that playlist ready.