January has always been a bitter sweet time for us gym rats. On one hand it’s a new year to continue building ourselves and achieve new goals, but on the other hand there are the swarms of new people who come into the gym and take up all the valuable workout space. You may be worried about what the gym veterans think of you. I want to tell you the truth, I’m rooting for you, along with my friends.
I know it is hard to believe because there are some many stereotypes and stigmas about healthy people and weightlifting but most of them are exaggerated. We respect the fact that had the courage to start something new. It is absolutely fantastic that you decided to invest in yourself and improve your quality of life. I’m writing this to put you at ease about what to expect.
First and foremost, forget everything you think you know about working out. Become a student, do not become a know-it-all, the best way to keep your fitness always feeling fresh is being humble enough to know that there is always something new to learn. There are so many crappy substitutes out there, photoshopped magazine pictures, miracle pills or the latest out of shape sales rep trying to convince you that wrapping your ass in the newest scientific body wraps blessed corporate monks will get rid of your love handles. These are all scams trying to take your money be appealing to that side of you that wants to believe there is an easy way. There is none. But getting sweaty is fun. Find a free workout plan online and do it with someone. My friends and I all have different levels of fitness and we constantly support each other and share any new bits of information we may learn. You’ll soon feel like you are a part of a new community. I keep going to gym all these years not just for my health but also for all of those cool people I get to meet.
Second, never be ashamed to ask for help, never be ashamed to ask for a spotter. Do not be a jerk. Despite what advertising with gyms like Planet Fitness say, no one in the gym is trying to intimidate you. The biggest guy in the gym was once a begginer, so they are a lot more helpful and understanding than you think. I love when people are honest enough to ask for help, your health is not just about moving things, it is about learning how your body works too. Just be reasonable and ask at an appropriate time. Nobody wants to have their workout interrupted when they are in the middle of a circuit or a superset.
Thirdly, don’t be a dick. Clean up after yourself. You are new to this place, and you will fit in a lot quicker by having simple manners.Nobody else should have to trip over your weights or clean up the swamp ass outlines left on the bench by you.
Finally, make sure you workout for the right reasons. This is not all about looks. Truth be told there’s always something we may want to fix. The reality is it doesn’t matter what you look like, just make sure you can walk out your door being ready to live your life. My father was the first one to introduce me to fitness but it wasn’t through the weight room. It was through all those basketball games he played with me on the court. It was through all those times he picked me up when we watched wrestling. It was through all those times our family went for a hike and I saw him wrap my mother in those big arms of his. True strength comes from how you love, and I take care of my health to make sure I’m prepared to love properly in my life. If you let that be your motivation, nothing can stop you. Best of luck to you my friend. I look forward to seeing all the progress you make.