Starting your Fitness Journey
Find What Works for You
Starting your fitness journey can be extremely overwhelming. We live in an age where there is so much information being thrown at us on a daily basis that it makes it almost impossible to know what’s true, what will work for you, or even where to begin. Everyone has an opinion and everyone seems to know what’s best for you, which is amazing considering that they aren’t you and never will be. So for all of you people not knowing where to start, here is my honest advice.
Join a Gym
Listen, there are a ton of great workouts that you can do at your house, I just don’t believe that most people (myself included) have the discipline to actually do them. For me there are just too many distractions and too many other things that I can be doing when at home. Even now when I have every intention of doing a 7 minute ab routine at night I rarely actually do it. I have a million excuses, but it really boils down to one simple honest truth, for me the house is for family and relaxing, not working out, so I just don’t do it.
I understand that people are intimated by the gym, but trust me, all of these things you think go on there are completely made up in your head. The gym is like everything else in life, it is what you make it. If you go there to put in work and change your life then that’s what you will do. All this nonsense about people judging you or being embarrassed because you don’t know what to do is simply not true. Nobody cares. I have never spent one second of my workout worrying or caring about what anyone else there is doing.
The thing I love about joining a gym is that implies intent. Just the act of driving to the gym and signing up shows some level of basic commitment. I also love the daily routine. I like getting my gym clothes on, mixing my pre-workout drink, thinking about my workouts while I’m driving to the gym, and then finally executing the whole process once there. It gives me a real sense of accomplishment and I truly believe that just getting in your car and driving there is half the battle, and unlike your house, there is nothing else to do at the gym but workout.
You Join a Gym, Now What?
So lets say you join a gym, well now what? You’ve never worked out before and you have no idea where to start. What do you do?
The first thing is that you have to pick and commit to something, anything. My suggestion is to really think about what motivates you in other areas of your life. What drives you at work? Are you like me and enjoy doing research and then personally applying that by yourself? If you are then great, go online and find somebody you want to emulate and do what they do. Get a magazine and follow a challenge. This is how I started. I picked a random 3 month get-lean challenge and followed it exactly. After I saw how much my body changed I was hooked for life and just became a sponge to any knowledge I could get.
Maybe you work better with someone in your face pushing you and telling you what to do. If that’s the case then hire a personal trainer. Find someone who will design your workouts and take you through them, and if they aren’t hard enough or what you want, then fire them and get a new trainer. It’s your time and money, you should always get what you want.
Maybe you want to start with yoga and build up to a hard workout. In that case, grab a mat and get to it!
Maybe you love that team environment, the camaraderie and support of a group setting. If that’s you then find some classes that you like and hit those a couple of times a week. Most gyms have a large variety of classes, just don’t be afraid to try something new and mix it up. The point is that it really doesn’t matter what you do when you're first starting out, you just have to make the commitment to do something. I happen to love the idea of a place where people can gather together and push themselves to be better physically. The gym can be like school for the body; you might have to pay for it, and you might not always like it, but I promise that you will be a better person for doing it.