Before you start working out:Read our blog entry: "Fitness 101: A Beginner's Guide to Training."
1. Fitness takes time.
Plan enough time for your fitness workout from the beginning. Be realistic about the timing of your workout, including travel, departure, check-in, warm-up and showers. Because: "First and foremost, it is about prioritizing the habit of exercising regularly," says personal trainer, life coach and book author Mike Campbell. "In the beginning it doesn't matter what you do in the gym, the important thing is to build and strengthen that habit. The rest can and will come naturally. "
2. You need a training schedule.
Susy Natal, trainer at Fitness First AU, says that success on your fitness journey comes faster if you have specific goals, which you then support with a training and nutrition plan. Susy Natal notes that people often go to a gym and just walk around while wasting their time. While you're at the gym, make the best of it. "Invest a day at the beginning in a sound, personalized exercise plan so you always know what you need to do to achieve your specific fitness goals," says Susy.
3. be realistic - every new beginning is hard.
"There will be days when you won't feel like it at all," says Mike Campbell. "It will be really, really hard in the beginning. But making big changes in your life - losing body fat, building muscle and dramatically improving your fitness - requires a lot of patience and consistent, hard work. It doesn't happen overnight. The sooner you take the fight in the beginning and internalize the fact that it takes time, the less risk you run of giving up too soon. "
4. when you start - ask questions!
If you're going to the gym for the first time and paying your membership fee (and extra trainer fees depending on the gym quarterly or semi-annually), use the services that are available to you, says Natal. "When you sign up, make sure you get a complete tour of the gym and understand every piece of equipment, every room and every (fitness) object. Never stop asking questions. The staff is there to help you and this is your best opportunity to prepare for your first workout at the gym. There is nothing worse than going to the gym for the first time and thinking, and not knowing exactly what you are doing or which muscle(s) you are training. Ask other members, make friends, talk to the staff at the reception or a trainer. Even if it is your 100th visit there. It could be that a new course starts soon or that exciting outdoor co-operations take place that you don't know anything about yet."
5. avoid the fitness intimidation
Every beginner will experience the feeling of unaccountability at some point when they are surrounded by a fitness group that calls the studio their living room and have already shown clear fitness results.
"Don't worry about what everyone else is doing or thinking," says Mike Campbell. "If you walk nervously into the gym and think everyone is staring at you, remember that everyone is on their own journey and trying to get your workouts done and improve yourself. Everyone has different training goals and also different prerequisites. It does not have to be everyone's goal to get a big bicep. A strong back or a little less hip fat can also be a sufficient training goal".
6. Back to Fitness Basics
Stay with the basics at the beginning of your fitness trip. Natal says that one thing that causes many new gym members to quit is that they think the fitness exercises have to be complex and look good.
"Before you collect different pieces of exercise equipment together to "build" your set-up, concentrate on doing your exercises without losing a lot of time or cooling off. Warm yourself up in the beginning - quite simply - on a rowing machine or another cardio machine. You should already know before you warm up what you are doing in your training and which muscles are being used. Do not always warm up on the same machine out of habit. Because when you start training on the Stairmaster, even though you are the upper body trainer, it makes little sense", she says.
Campbell adds the basic movements to any exercise program, whether it's inside or outside the gym: Squats, lunge, bend, push, pull, twist and walk (whether it's walking, running or sprinting, depending on ability). "Consistency and patience will make it work," Campbell says.
7. avoid injuries during training.
You should start slowly to avoid injuries, says Gospel. "If you have never worked with weights before, practice the correct form and posture before moving on to heavier weights. No one will pay attention to how much or how little weight you use. But if your execution is harmful to your health, then the others in the studio will notice and the show-off effect will be gone anyway." In the beginning the guided machine weights are best. The risk of injury is lowest due to the isolation of the muscles. Later you can train with free weights or cables, because you need more control.
8. avoid the peak times at the beginning
Natal points out that the first week you should try to keep training times as short as possible until you have a good look at the layout of the gym - it can be overwhelming to find your way around a room full of people. It can also be frustrating when you have to wait at equipment, share your training equipment with others, or be asked several times how much longer you have to wait. As a beginner, it is normal to take a little longer to adjust your seat and choose your weights. Later, when you are more experienced, it may not be a problem to alternate between sets on the same machine or to "jump" between machines when your own machine is not free. But in the beginning this just throws you off track. The fun of training fades and you go home frustrated. Then rather train in peace and quiet to get in. Ask the trainers when the peak times are when everyone comes to the training.
9. do not train alone
"Find a friend, a class, a trainer or anything that won't leave you alone in the gym," says personal trainer Mike Battaglia. "When you're not alone, it gives you security and it also increases the pressure. I compare it to going to a party, a nightclub or any other social situation. When you're with a friend or a group, it takes the focus off yourself and you immediately feel comfortable in your situation. The additional advantage is that the more people you know about your fitness goals, the more you are committed to achieving them. You don't want to look bad and admit that you have already given up after 2 weeks. "
10. investing in the right fitness equipment
Invest in good, solid shoes and generally in a proper outfit, says Gospel. "Old T-shirts are OK, but sheer gymnastic tights for women are not. And shirts that show off the sweat rather than absorb and hide it are not what you want either. Also think about a suitable water bottle and the right towel.
In the beginning, really only buy what you need. Most of the equipment only comes into play when you want to get the last 5% out, so you really only need one or two good pairs of shirts and pants, a pair of shoes, a water bottle and a real sports towel. "
Our equipment for the gym or for jogging in the fresh air can of course be found at www.stryve.de