It takes the same amount of courage to walk into a new gym and to walk to a lion’s den.
You feel all those eyes on you and suddenly you’re super-conscious of how you walk. You start using the first piece of equipment you see, hoping and praying that no one asks you the dreaded question– “How much longer do you have left?”
It is so hard to be a beginner.
But you know what? It doesn’t always have to be that awkward! You can make a good start right off the bat and never question if you are doing something wrong by following these ten tips that we have for you. After all, you didn’t pay for that gym membership just to feel bad about yourself for two hours straight!
If you are a beginner in a gym and don’t want any judgemental looks thrown your way, read on!
- It’s Okay to Ask Questions
One of the key mistakes beginners do is assume that everyone expects them to know everything. This is not true.
Ask the gym staff to give you a tour and tell you about the machines. Ask the gym trainers if you are doing an exercise right. Once you start asking questions, it won’t feel that hard.
- Don’t Hit the Gym Every Single Day
We get it. You’re brimming with enthusiasm and want to get six-pack abs in a month. But your body will not seem so enthusiastic after six continuous days of working out.
As a beginner, your recovery time will be longer so you will need more rest after your workouts. Going to the gym three days a week is a good start!
- Always Start with a Warm-Up
We know you have heard this a million times before. But that’s only because it is super-important.
Just walk or jog on the treadmill for twenty minutes before you start working out. It will save a lot of pain (and cramps) later.
- With Weights, Start Small
Want to lift weights like Jacked-up Joe? You have to work up to it.
Joe has spent countless hours in the gym in order to look the way he does right now. You can’t just achieve his progress in your first week (or month) at the gym.
- Make Cycling Your Best Friend
So if not weights, then what? Well, cycling of course!
Not only is it a great beginner-friendly exercise, but it is also an amazing form of cardio that helps you shed weight quickly and build muscles in almost all parts of your body.
Just remember not to overdo it!
- Don’t Divide your Days
Gym pros are always talking about how it’s their leg day or ab day. This might cause you to wonder if you should do the same.
The short answer is no. You don’t have the strength at the moment to dedicate an entire day to certain body part without getting exhausted or hurting yourself.
- Follow the 1x20 System
Dr Michael Yessis says beginners should choose one exercise for each body part and do it 20 times each. No more no less.
This not only helps prevent injury but has been proven to be super-effective in building strength in beginners!
- Do Your Research
You may not know all the ins and outs of the exercises and equipment yet. And that is okay.
You can always Google the name of the equipment and learn how to use it correctly. You can also follow the workout regime (make sure it’s beginner level) of your favourite fitness guru. This will make sure that you exercise correctly and avoid injury.
- Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
It is more likely that people at the gym are checking themselves out in the mirror than criticising your form. So really, the only one doing the critiquing is you.
Don’t be so hard on yourself. These people have been at this for months or years. You’ll get there one day too!
- Always End by Stretching
It is extremely easy to injure yourself during workouts. One thing that will help prevent it is stretching and a proper cool-down before you hit the showers.
This will make you more flexible and you can also avoid painful cramps!
We hope these tips told you exactly what a beginner can do in a gym. Remember that even if you are a total newbie, you can totally kill it in the gym!