It’s a new year, which means plenty of people are finally getting back into the gym.
“I guess I’ve come to the realization that my younger body will no longer sustain me without actually putting some work into it,” said Washington Sports Clubs member Kirk Winkler.
Washington Sports Clubs trainer Libby Linden Rubin said many gym-goers who haven’t gone in a while tend to bring bad habits, like jumping into a workout without warming up.
“It’s important to warm up first and then do an active stretch,” said Linden Rubin. “Never would you hold a movement when you’re ice cold.”
For regulars at the gym, welcoming newcomers this time of year can also mean dealing with etiquette issues.
“I think it’s mostly towels, just leaving them around and not putting them in the bins where they are supposed to go, because it can kinda get dirty real quick,” said WSC gym member Sabala Baskar.
“Sometimes friends come and workout together and they carry out conversations pretty loudly and I think that’s a little distracting to other people,” said WSC member Jacqueline Djomo.
Linden Rubin said it’s also important to wipe down your equipment after use, and if you get the urge to use a cell phone, don’t do it.
“And when you’re walking around the locker room, cover up,” said Linden Rubin. “People don’t want to have to see you.”If staying motivated is your issue she recommends making a plan.
“Once you have a plan, that plan could be, 'I’m going to work out three days a week,' something baby steps, something that’s attainable,” said Linden Rubin. “Then say, 'You know what? I’m going to pack my bag the night before, bring it with me to the office or keep it in the car,' and know that you’re going to go to the club right after work.”
Washington Sports Clubs says one of the most important ways to stay on track is to reward yourself. For example, if you’ve been going to the gym consistently for four to six weeks, get a massage, go out with friends or maybe buy yourself a new outfit. But trainers advise against rewarding yourself with food because then you set yourself back from your hard work.