Find your fit: Insights from the gym floor

Making the gym apart of your daily routine

Making a commitment to something in life takes a lot of time to get used to. Going to the gym is definitely one of those commitments. It may just seem like another thing to try and fit into your already busy schedule but can be very beneficial once you start going. It’s a great way to keep in shape, build more muscle, or completely revamp and turn your life around.

For myself, I was more of a Wii kid. Not wanting to go outside but always wanting to play Super Mario Bros. With that, I gained a few pounds and had been self-conscious because of it. The biggest reason I started going to the gym was because I wasn’t fully comfortable in my own skin. The gym had changed that for me and ended up making it more enjoyable for me to go. Knowing that I’m putting in the effort, I can look at myself and be happy where I’m at! 

Creating a schedule

Making and maintaining a schedule that is friendly to your work or school schedule is an important start. You can set aside certain days for certain parts of your body you want to work on next. For example at the gym you can work on your chest, back, arms, shoulders, legs and core. Making a schedule that contains all of these areas is vital for bettering your body. You can even do two different areas in one day if you want! You can match up your chest and shoulders in one day, or really any combination of the five.

It’s all what you favor and what you’re comfortable with to start. For myself, I started by going 3 days a week for about an hour at a time. Progressively, I started going 5 days a week for an hour and a half. That way I could work on each area independently. But again, it’s all up to how your personal schedule fits around your time going to the gym. It’s also very important to incorporate rest days within the week as well. Don’t strain your body day in and day out. Make sure you’re getting optimal time to rest until your next time walking through those gym doors. I like to cool down after working out, so I get on the treadmill for about 10 minutes after I’m done. This begins my resting stage after the gym.

Infographic of body parts that are commonly worked out while at the gym
Infographic showing different parts of the body to work on at the gym
Different barbell weights at Glimmerglass gym
Different types of weights at Glimmerglass gym
Kettlebell and dumbbells differing in size and weight

Knowing your limits and keep track 

Making the gym a habit takes some time for sure. But once you ease into your schedule, it would be worth your while to keep track of what you’re getting your weights at. That includes also knowing your limits to start off. You want to be able to push yourself at the gym while also maintaining a good rhythm. What I mean by this is that you’re not going to go into the gym your first day and start curling 120 pounds and bench pressing 300 pounds. It is all about working to that point and being satisfied with progress. This is a marathon, not a sprint. It also leaves a lot to be desired, in a good way! If you max out all the weights and can do it with ease, then going to the gym might not be an experience that’s worth doing anymore. So, keeping track of what weights you’re on from one visit to the next, can be very beneficial.

Familiarize yourself

Familiarizing yourself with the equipment at the gym is also very beneficial. Knowing what weight to use on certain machines can allow you to bump that number up for the next time you go. It is also important to know what each machine does if you decide to use them at the gym. Different machines focus on different areas of the body. Through those machines, they even focus on different parts of a specific body part. Not every leg machine focuses on the same part of the leg. Some focus on your thighs, while some focus on your calves. That goes for most of the machines. But there is a lot more than just machines at the gym. There are machines that burn fat, like treadmills and ellipticals. But also, machines and equipment that build muscle, like leg press, dumbbells, barbells and more. Being able to familiarize yourself with the equipment will make it easier for you down the road.

Different leg machines that focus on different parts of your leg

Why the gym is so beneficial

The gym is a hobby that requires a lot of commitment but it does pay dividends in the end. For obvious reasons, it helps build muscle, lose fat, maintain and better your body shape. It is also a place to get away and focus on something else. According to HelpGuide.org, it has shown that exercising combats things like anxiety, depression and ADHD. Exercising at the gym releases energy and makes you really focus on what you’re working on. Personally, there were many times I went to the gym as an outlet. A public space where everyone has the same goal, it is inspiring to see how far people have come on their journey. With that, it helped my mental state about my figure. I’m still far from where I want to be, but at least knowing that I’m trying to make a change makes me feel really good about myself. 

With all that being said, the gym is a hobby I’m glad I picked up. Not only is it something I enjoy, but it benefits me in multiple fields. I highly recommend it’s something everyone should experience, no matter what you look like. It might help you more than you might know, just like myself!