Let’s just get right into it. If you are at the gym because you have a significant amount of LBS to lose then there are some things you should be doing.
- Get over yourself. Not to sound harsh at all, seriously. The first thing a lot of us do is look around the room and start to compare our bodies to the bodies around us. Everyone is at the gym for their own reasons and chances are they are more worried about themselves than they are checking you out. Not to say you would get some snobby folks who are quick to pass judgement. I just focus on my own gym plan for the day and shut out everyone else.
- Be prepared. I know we don’t all have a lot of money to buy the top of the line work out gear. That is ok! You can go to WalMart, Old Navy, and watch for sales at outlets. You need a good pair of shoes, a wicking pair of yoga or work out pants, a wicking shirt, a wicking sports bra, and I like to have a few white hand towels. I like the wicking fabrics because they draw moisture away from the skin and help keep me from breakouts and from feeling gross. The hand towels are great because personally I know how clean they are and if I want to wipe my face off or even hide the time section of my cardio machine I can do it. Also, keeping them all white means I can bleach as needed. Kmart, Walmart, and Sears all have affordable options for pedometers and even heart rate monitors.
- Take advantage of deals. Sign up for group on living social. Look around at gyms and clubs that offer discounted rates/free weeks. It can be a really good way to see if a place works for you (a gym should be a place where you can work and that works well for your needs). Taking up a yoga place on a free week is a great way to figure out what you are looking for. I am in a large city where things are far from cheap but I was able to get a Groupon for ten fitness classes at a local gym for $20.00. That was a massive savings and a great way for me to try a new place and a new style of exercise.
- Make sure you’re eating enough and eating what you need. I think before I started working out I never worried I was eating enough! Ha! But, when you are working out you need to make sure you are getting enough nutrients to sustain the work out and to make sure your body doesn’t go into survival mode. If you do not eat enough then your body will hold on to every bit of fuel because it fears you aren’t going to fuel it later. For me having snacks on hand has been a big help. I try and keep an apple, a meal replacement or protein bar, and a cheese stick or mix nuts with me. Planning ahead is the biggest key in your health and fitness journey.
Above all else you have to make sure you are prepared. Most days are not going to be easy, most days in the beginning you will want to skip out and go home for a nap, a lot of days you may think of any small excuse not to show up to get that work out in. Having my gym bag packed, my food prepared, and my water bottle with me are some of the best ways I have found to stay on track and reach my goals.