Happy Monday! For this Motivation Monday, I'm going to give you all some gym etiquette. Because for someone like me who's used to going to the gym (Wisco's strongest lady, hello) and worked in a gym for 2 years (Planet Fitness FTW), I feel it important to share them with those of you newbies. You might be going to work out (we all have our resolutions) because you haven't since high school. Or maybe you're used to doing at-home workouts and felt the need to improve with using gym equipment. Whatever the case may be, there's gym common sense that some of you may be forgetting.
Let's get started:
- Lock your things. Nothing's worse than loosing your phone, wallet, or any personal belonging when you're in the gym or taking a shower. And there's really not much the gym personnel can do about it. There's so much traffic coming in and out this time of year it's hard to track who might have taken your things.
- Use only ONE locker. Some people feel the need to bring 5 different bags inside when they can leave them in the trunk or locked in the car. Why? I'll never know.
- Don't hog a machine. Nothing is more agitating than someone who does 100 reps on a single machine. You don't own the equipment. You pay to rent it each month. Remember that.
- Don't over exert yourself! From someone who can bench 135lbs with no issue, even I know my limits. It's counter-productive - getting an injury. That leaves you sitting around, waiting to heal.
- Clean your equipment when you're finished with it. There's sanitary spray bottles and mass amounts of paper towel for a reason. Sitting at home sick, is also counter-productive.
- Don't be afraid to ask for help. Most gyms have personal trainers or classes you can sign up with if you have no idea where to start. And my veteran lifters know it's best doing weights with a partner. No one wants to be stuck with a heavy weight stuck on their chest, choking for air.
- Follow the gym's dress code. Nothing's more awkward (from someone who used to work in a gym), than having to ask someone to take their bandanna off.
- Respect the gym equipment. I'm used to putting up some weight, especially on squats. I think it's pointless to slam weights. It doesn't make you look stronger, or like a better lifter. And it definitely doesn't help you push the weight up. You should have enough control to set the weights back without clanking them around excessively. Stop showing off before you break something.
- Focus on yourself. Don't be jealous of the slim and fit runner girl in front of you, she's been active for years. Don't push yourself too hard trying to keep up with the bodybuilder looking guy, he's been lifting houses since high school. Everyone has their own rate and their own pace. If you're just starting out, getting to your goal NEVER comes overnight. Be realistic. Those who can run a mile in 7 minutes train just about everyday. Bodybuilders lift mass amounts of weights in intervals so the muscle has enough time to rebuild, and they're on a strict diet. If you gradually challenge yourself, you'll eventually get to where you want to be. That's why it's called PROGRESS.
- DON'T. TALK. ON. A. CELLPHONE. Take your calls in the locker room or outside. I can't tell you how many times I've had to tap people on the shoulder and disturb their 'precious' chat to get them to move off the machine. It's annoying and nobody cares about your conversation. Really.
Hope this makes your (and everyone else's) gym experience a more enjoyable one!