Miss Mary

What do I need to get started in the gym?

Just the whole process of “starting” a fitness program can be overwhelming.  If you’ve not been in the gym for, ahem, sometime then this may help you stay in the gym this time.  What are the things that you need to be successful as you work out?  There are a few simple things that you may already have and you just have to dust them off.  They are:2013 Getting started 1

  1. good pair of shoes,
  2. heart rate monitor,
  3. 24 oz bottle of water,
  4.  iPod,
  5. your exercise program for your session,
  6. your journal,
  7. hand towel or wash cloth,
  8. lock for your locker,
  9. something to carry this all in.

2013 Getting started 2Shoes.  I just recently changed up my shoes.  What a world of difference when your shoes support you all the way up your legs.  If you get nothing else for the gym, invest in a very good pair of sneaks.  NOT THE FASHION STATEMENT STUFF.  Get the type of shoe where someone will fit you properly.  Hint:  they’re not at the Big Box stores.  I picked mine up at Dick Pond Athletics in Carpentersville.   So many people recommended them that I had to go.

Heart rate monitor.  When I first started out in the gym two years ago one of the trainers I worked with suggested a heart rate monitor to help me know exactly where my rate was at all times to work efficiently in the gym to burn fat.  I rely on this monitor a great deal especially when I am doing cardio on the stationery bike, the elliptical, and the treadmill.  You have a target zone to burn fat in and anything above that, I am told, you’re only burning sugar and not fat.  The zones are usually listed on the machines.  Most heart rate monitors are synced up with the machines in the gym.  I have a Cardiosport heart rate monitor and there is a very popular one called Polar.

Water bottle.  I use my nifty pink cup that I bring every time I come to the gym.  You need to hydrate and a sixteen ounce bottle of water isn’t it.  I drink all of the 24 oz.   Chris Powell from the extreme weight loss show says you should drink half your weight in ounces each day.  OMG that’s a bunch.

iPod.  A Playlist on your iPod – or whatever you may use – takes the boredom out of what you are doing.  Honestly, my daughter gave me hers and trained me on how to use it after she upgraded.  There are a few sites that can help you find the music you need to work with.  Plus it is all personal preference too.  When I do the all over workout with weights and exercises, I follow Les Mills Bodypump.  For cardio, I look at the multiple of 3 minute marks (3,6,9,12,15…) to have very up tempo music when I do an interval cardio session.   Then at the end of each I always have something like Chris Mann to help me stretch the IT bands.  (I’m a MannFan)

Exercise program.  Success in everything has to do with planning.  I know that for my overall session I have to do lower body, Chest, back, biceps, triceps, lower body again, shoulders, abs and then stretch.  If you don’t know the moves write them down.  Just Google them or check out Skinny Ms.  She has tons of videos.  So does the Les Mills organization.

Your journal.  Just so you can keep track of how much weights you used and reps you performed, or how long each of you cardio sessions were.  2013 Getting started 3

Hand towel.  Do you sweat?  Then this should be a wordless entry.

Lock for your locker.  Only makes sense.

Something to carry around your stuff.  I use my Brighton sunglasses case.  Fits my exercise program, a pen, my lock and my iPod comfortable.

So there you go.  Packs up nice and neat to throw into the purse.  No reason to not get started.  Carry on.

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