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Your First Time at the Gym

Your First Time at the Gym

woman doing squats with a medicine ball

Even the most seasoned gym-goers were beginners at some point. Enthusiasm mixed with a positive outlook is all you need to start. Whether you are new to the gym or returning after an absence, check out our guide on what to do at the gym.

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What to Bring

Ready to get active? Bring along:

  1. Comfortable clothes: Fancy gym clothes can feel great but are unnecessary. Wear easy-to-move-in clothes and comfortable sneakers.
  2. Water: Carrying a water bottle will help you stay hydrated during your first-day gym workout.
  3. A towel: Bring a towel for sweat or to wipe down equipment.
  4. A lock: The gym is not responsible for lost or stolen items. Protect your belongings in a locker whenever possible!

Gym Etiquette

Have an effective experience at the gym by:

  1. Reading and following your gym’s rules. Gyms have regulations to help protect you and the other members. If you don’t know what they mean, ask!
  2. Sharing the equipment. Wait until others conclude using a machine before hopping on it yourself, and move away from the equipment when finished.
  3. Cleaning your equipment after use. Clean the area to keep germs at bay and the equipment in good condition.
  4. Arriving on time for sessions and classes. Arriving late can disrupt instructors and other attendees.
  5. Having respect for other gym-goers. Since the gym is a public space, treat others with respect.

How to Start at the Gym

Before your first time at the gym, you should know where to start. Three tips for a successful gym experience include:

  1. Defining clear goals for yourself. Whether you want to lose weight or gain muscle, clearly define what you want to achieve so you can focus on reaching those goals.
  2. Working with gym staff to build a workout plan. Consult with staff if you need help figuring out where to start. The team will work with you to identify what steps will best meet your needs and goals.
  3. Considering personal training. Consider working with a personal trainer for guidance and motivation through your workouts for more direct assistance.

What To Do At The Gym For Beginners

What to Do at the Gym for Beginners

With your goals in mind, here are some more tips for your first time at the gym:

Make Sure You Warm Up

Warm up before lifting weights or other exercises to prevent injuries and ensure your body is prepared for activity. This is one of the most important things to do at the gym for the first time. Skipping a warm-up or stretching session can increase your chances of cramps, sprained muscles or fatigue injury.

A good warm-up doesn’t even have to take that long — reap the benefits in as little as five to ten minutes. You can do this by stretching or doing simple cardio exercises like jumping jacks or jogging. Your goal is to get your body moving and start getting your heart rate up.

Don’t Overwork Yourself

If it’s your first time at the gym, you’re probably excited to start your new health and wellness journey. Whether your goal is to gain more flexibility, increase your cardiorespiratory fitness or lose weight, it can be tempting to dive right in and try to hit all the machines at the gym on your first day.

One of the most common mistakes people make when starting a new workout regimen is overdoing it. If you start off pushing your body beyond what it’s capable of at the moment and rushing to get in shape, you’ll increase your chances of injury and burnout.

Instead, start off slow and familiarize yourself with your body, the gym equipment and what your base fitness level is. Remember, patience is vital, and you’ll see results faster than you think!

Take the Time to Recover

While it’s easy to focus on the type, intensity and length of workouts, the recovery process is just as important. Without time to rest and recover, it can be harder to reach your goals.

Overworked muscles can cause soreness that will make it difficult to continue progressing. Taking the time to rest allows your body to repair and recover, preventing injuries and increasing your chances of long-term success.

start your fitness journey with 5 Bridges Health & Fitness

Start Your Fitness Journey With 5 Bridges Health & Fitness

At 5 Bridges Health & Fitness, we know that fitness is for everyone. We’re ready to help you reach your fitness goals with state-of-the-art equipment, friendly staff and a community atmosphere. Sign up for a membership today!

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