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To ask gym-goers how you use yours?

(19 Posts)
flipflap75 Thu 23-Feb-17 13:37:02

Posting for traffic, so forgive me...

I've just joined a gym with a pool, classes and gym floor.

I haven't done regular exercise for years (and never really stuck at it when I did). I do enjoy classes and swimming/gym (though slightly less). I want to get fit and lose weight (and realise that exercise is only a part of that).

There's just such a lot of choice at the gym that I can't decide how to approach it. My week tends to be unpredictable so I can't guarantee I'll be able to make the same classes every week, but should be able to get there 3-5 times per week i.e. gym/swim if I can't make classes.

I wondered if anyone could share the way they approach gym time/getting fit. Do you stick to the same activities each week, or just have a target number of exercise minutes each week? Any tips gratefully received!

DeepfriedPizza Thu 23-Feb-17 13:41:22

The gym I go to is basic. No swimming pool etc but has classes although they are usually always full.
I run outside when the weather is good so when it's raining hard or late at night I go and just try to stay for an hour. No target exercises just run for a bit then whatever takes my fancy.

If I get too bogged down with routine etc I don't enjoy it and stop going.

SomewhatIdiosyncratic Thu 23-Feb-17 13:50:42

I don't use a gym but tend to go to classes and run on regular days.

As you don't have a fixed routine, go through the programme and highlight what is of interest to you so that you are aware of what opportunities are available around your availability. The gym/ swim is probably a good, open option to use as backup when the classes don't work for you.

Thattwatoverthere Thu 23-Feb-17 13:52:37

I book my classes in advance which works for me because I have set hours at work. On the nights I don't have a class I tend to focus on weights and do reps on most of the machines. Sometimes a swim but that's my least favourite thing to do there.

If I have a free night I look at any classes that are available and book in to see if it's for me.

Probably not much help!

DontTouchTheMoustache Thu 23-Feb-17 13:56:59

I mix and match (or I used to before DS was born when I could get down there)
I would do a few nights per week where I would do gym stuff so cardiovascular to start then some weights. I'd be there for about 45 minutes then I'd go for a swim doing lengths for about half an hour (of you like swimming you can get an underwater mp3 player from which is amazing and totally makes you swim longer)
Then I'd do a few classes as well, like legs bums and tums as this focused on the areas in wanted to tone while the other stuff was about fat burning and overall fitness. I also liked doing a yoga class for general core strength. I miss pre-baby me haha.

SweetieBaby Thu 23-Feb-17 13:57:12

I tried lots of different classes when I first joined but now just stick to the ones that I really enjoy - pilates, yoga and aqua. I've found that by doing this I really look forward to going and it isn't a chore. I usually go to 3 classes a week but if I can't make one I'll go swimming or use the gym instead.

NoBiggie Thu 23-Feb-17 14:07:36

I book classes as I am so unmotivated when I'm just doing my own thing so when I'm going through a good spell I try to do 4 classes a week always first thing before work. I have to book in advance the day the classes are released but you can cancel up to an hour before the class starts if you can't make it.

flipflap75 Thu 23-Feb-17 14:09:11

Thanks all, very helpful. Hear what you're saying re. finding things I enjoy, and therefore being able to stick with them. Also, the underwater MP3 player sounds like a great idea.

So do others aim a certain number of sessions per week like SweetieBaby, whether classes/gym/swim?

FV45 Thu 23-Feb-17 14:10:27

I suggest mixing it up for a few weeks to see what you enjoy.

I put that in bold because I think above everything else, you've got to enjoy what you're doing, and you'll only find that out by trying lots of things.

Do the classes rely on signing up for a fixed number or is a pay as you book/go system? If the former then it might not work for you. Any class that mixes cardio and strength is going to help you get fitter.

Does the gym offer a personal plan? That can give you motivation.

I am a runner, but when I was injured I join our sports centre and did loads of different classes (basically whatever was available when I was free --aside from Nordic walking, I drew the line at that--), got a plan made for me in the gym and swam.

DinkyGT Thu 23-Feb-17 14:16:17

I use videos on YouTube by the body coach or clean eating Alice on Insta for I spiration and aim to do at least three sessions per week. One will be legs, next arms/chest and last o ne will be something like cardio or dynamic stretching focus. Usually try for 45mins each time

flipflap75 Thu 23-Feb-17 14:17:30

Heheh - I love Nordic walking smile You can storm along and it uses more muscles than running (apparently). Takes you twice as long to get anywhere as running of course, and you get some funny looks.

Re the classes, FV45, I'm on a flexible membership while I figure out what I'm going to fit in/when, and all classes are included.

Sorry, crossed posts with NoBiggie - having a target number of sessions seems to be the way to go.

I think I'll book as many strength/cardio classes as I can make week-to-week, and if I'm short of my target, fill in gaps with gym/swim. Thanks all.

dinkystinky Thu 23-Feb-17 14:25:35

I tend to book classes - 4 or 5 a week - which MAKE me go to the gym, a mixture of bodycombat, circuits, boxing, pilates and yoga. If I go by myself, I'll do some cardio and/or a weights session - I have an app which gives me 3 set 28 min resistance sessions a week to do

Areyoufree Thu 23-Feb-17 14:35:08

There's a great book "The new rules of lifting for Women". It has a whole load of plans on, plus explains all the muscle groups and how to perform the moves. You should always have a plan and a goal for your workouts, in order to see good progress. I didn't start to see results until I followed a set program.

TriJo Thu 23-Feb-17 14:45:33

I use the basement gym at work. I mostly run outdoors but in really bad weather I'll use the treadmill there. I also do core strength work for injury prevention.

Blumkin Thu 23-Feb-17 14:54:16

I try to go 3 days per week, when I started I had an hour with a personal trainer and set up a routine on cardio and weights that takes just under an hour. Then I try to combine this occasionally with a yoga/Pilates class, or a spin class or a swim.

So I make sure I do my gym workout 3x per week, and then once or twice a week I'll follow it up with a class. Then at the weekend I take dd swimming.

MackerelOfFact Thu 23-Feb-17 15:02:27

I primarily book classes. Even classes I've been to literally hundreds of times (like spin or pilates) and know off by heart, there is no way I'd have the motivation to stick at the workout if I did it alone. I need someone to hold me to account, tell me exactly how hard I should be working and for how long.

I've also just started personal training for resistance (because I am so scared of doing damage with weights) - hopefully after a while I'll have the confidence and technique to do resistance training on my own.

Blobby10 Thu 23-Feb-17 15:06:49

When I'm fully fit again (probably next week!) I will go to the gym every morning Mon-Friday for an hour my routine is usually one day focus on lower body - squats, deadlifts, walking lunges, leg extension, etc all weighted, one day upper body - bench press, flyes, shoulder press, seated row, etc all with weights, 2 days of all over body circuit - one of which I got off the internet (FitterFood on Facebook are brilliant!!) and one day of pure cardio. I will also cycle about 20 miles on the Saturday! Oh and Pilates stretches every night before bed. It IS intense and I do push myself so the above might not work for you if you aren't used to it but hopefully it gives you some ideas!

DontTouchTheMoustache Thu 23-Feb-17 16:14:28

Is there someone who might be up for doing classes with you? I found that when I had a friend going with me I was less nervous about trying new classes and more reluctant to cancel as it would be letting someone else down

formerbabe Thu 23-Feb-17 16:22:32

I prefer classes so do quite a lot. If there's nothing on I fancy I use the gym equipment. I use the pool more for relaxation rather than exercise and only on hair wash days grin

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