Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Welcome Fitness Newbies

It's almost January. And if you spend any time in the fitness center you know what that means - we are about to be inundated with New Year's Resolution newbies taking over "our" space. 

So to make the transition smoother for everyone, let's cut the hopefully-soon-to-be fitness buffs a break. And for those that are new, here are a few pointers:

-       No one is looking at you. Honest. See all those mirrors lining the walls of the fitness floor and aerobic studio? Those are for people to look at themselves. And people in the midst of sweating through their time here are far too conceited about their own workout to bother looking at you.

-       It’s obvious on the fitness floor when you are unsure what you’re doing. Ask someone!  Gym rats are always eager to show off their knowledge and advice. A smile and a “can you show me this machine?” will go a long way.

-       Yes you are taking someone’s spot in the group x class. It’s ok, they’ll get over it.

-       If you are new to the class, are pregnant or have an injury, please tell me. I want you to have fun, but most importantly I want you to have a safe and effective workout. I won’t judge you, I’ll show you how to do what we’re doing in a way that is best for you. Remember, I want you to come back because my job depends on you enjoying your time here.  So it’s in my best interest to be sure you have fun!

-       Yes you are going to get sweaty and stinky. Yes your body is going to hurt and your quads will be so sore you’ll have trouble standing up. That’s good! That means you are working hard, getting stronger and getting healthier. Believe me when I tell you that soon you’ll love that sore feeling because you’ll know you’ve accomplished something.

-       Endorphins are real and you will find them. And you may even become addicted to them. This is a good addiction! But endorphins don’t kick in until you’ve raised your heart and put it in a good workout.

-       Whatever keeps you on that treadmill is fine with me. But really, I don’t want to hear your cell conversation about the fight with your sister-in-law. Try an iPod instead.

-       There is no perfect exercise or magic class to help you look like a supermodel. Good health and a strong body take time and commitment. Don’t get discouraged when you don’t see the results you want in a week or even a month.

-       Stick with it and next year you’ll be one of the regulars complaining that there is nowhere to park and you have to wait for the leg press.


  1. I really couldn't have said it better Jennifer. I especially like the part about the mirrors ;). I'm only going to look at you if you're in my way, haha. It's that time of year - there are going to be a lot of new people in the gym. I want them all to have fun and stay motivated to continue. That's the goal :).
    Suzanne @WorkoutNirvana

  2. EXCELLENT! I cannot stand people who yap on their phones while working out. So.Don't.Care. Hang up and work out!

  3. Hey Jennifer, this is great advice. I'm the husband of your friend Jilda.
    She read me something your wrote recently, and I spewed red wine on my computer screen. I hope you're satisfied :)

  4. Oh Rick - a good red wine should never be wasted like that! Although I'm glad you enjoy the blog.

  5. Can I add to the list to wear something appropriate. You don't need makeup on to work out. And stay on a cardio machine for longer than 5 minutes are you look retarded as you flit from machine to machine.