Whatever your reason for walking through the door, you come to the gym with a goal in mind. I have seen countless people come to the gym gung-ho and ready to change their lives only to fizzle out after a week and never to return. For some, this cycle goes on for months; renewed optimism that this time will be different, only to suffer the same demoralizing fate in the end. If you want to end this cycle and start making real progress, there are a few things you need to do to aid the process.
1) Plan in Advance
Planning your time at the gym should be an almost daily thing. Winging it, or simply assuring yourself that you will get to the gym won’t cut it. Put it in your phone, write it in your Calendar, or even send yourself a reminder email. Whatever you do, know what days and times you are going to go the gym and have that time scheduled for nothing else.
2) Ease into It
While both sexes are equally guilty of going at it too hard their first trip to the gym, it’s mainly guys who are the guilty of this. Something about our macho DNA tells us we have to lift the heaviest weights we can as hard as we can, which usually will leave us unable to move a muscle for the next 3-4 days which means we just missed 2 chances to go to the gym. No matter what your overall goal is, it is important to slowly allow yourself to build up to it. Don’t let ego get in the way and ruin it for you. Stop trying to keep up with people around the gym who have been doing this longer than you. It’s great to aspire to be like them, but you won’t do that on your first day.
3) Keep a Workout Journal
Keeping track of your workouts is helpful for a number of reasons. It allows you to make changes to your program as you go, it keeps you consistent in what you are doing, and it gives you visual confirmation that you are actually making it to the gym. There are special apps/notebooks devoted to keeping a workout log, but a notepad and paper work just as well. All that really matters is that you are using it.
It can take between 21-28 days to form a habit. Being consistent about the gym is one of the toughest things for all people. Even as a seasoned gym-goer and personal trainer, I can tell you there are times that I have ZERO motivation to go to the gym, but I do it anyway. Being consistent is important because the more days you miss, the easier it will be in the long run to find excuses why your “can’t” go to the gym.
5) Be Accountable
As humans, when we are not held accountable we often will let things slide. Even when we are trying to be accountable to ourselves we still will let things fall by the wayside. When getting into a fitness routine, tell someone. Tell multiple people. A friend, a spouse, a child. It doesn’t matter who as long as more than just you know that you are trying to make a positive change. Have a workout buddy who you know will expect you at the gym and I bet you won’t find an excuse to miss it. This is where personal trainers can also be a great investment. Having someone at the gym who is expecting you for an appointment and guiding you through a great workout can really make difference in how you are training.
Following these 5 habits can make a real difference in your fitness and reaching your goals. No one is perfect and no one should be expected to be, but making excuses as to why you cannot do something won’t get you anywhere either. If you are ready to make a change once and for all let the trainers at Lifetime Fitness Solutions help guide you. We offer great training, nutritional counseling, and everything else you need to reach those elusive goals. Contact Aaron Morales DPT, CSCS, NSCA-CPT to set up your first appointment today at email@example.com.
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