4 Ways to Maximize Your Gym Experience

fitness equipmentAlthough I workout a lot at home, I still enjoy going to the gym. And when I go, I see so many people floating around the gym with no plan or program. They drift from machine to machine, day after day, and never see any real results.  Well having a gym membership can be a worthwhile investment if you use it wisely and focus on your fitness goals.  Here are 4 ways to get the most out of your gym experience:

  • GET A WORKOUT PARTNER – Make some connections and find another gym member or a friend who has similar fitness goals.  Form a partnership and set up a mutual gym schedule.  You can motivate each other, hold each other accountable and share your accomplishments.
  • SIGN UP FOR PERSONAL TRAINING SESSIONS – Pay the extra fee and hire a personal trainer; it’s worth the added investment. Trainers are there to teach you the basics of working out, introduce you to the equipment, show you proper form and design workouts to help you reach your goals.
  • JOIN GROUP SESSIONS – Exercise classes are fun and add variety to your routine. They also allow you to meet others who are energetic and like-minded. Most gyms offer a wide range of classes so check out a schedule and find a class or 2 that you’ll enjoy and stick with.
  • USE THE AMENITIES – Some gyms have walking tracks, swimming pools and saunas. These extras can enhance your gym experience and contribute greatly to a well-rounded and healthy lifestyle.

The gym can be a fun place when you take a different approach and plan your time effectively. Utilizing all that the gym has to offer will make it a worthwhile and fulfilling experience.

Personal Training Clients Say the Darndest Things

  • Over the past few years my fitness training career has been quite rewarding.  I’ve had the pleasure of training men and women of all ages.  I can say the majority of them have been dedicated, hardworking and willing to go the extra mile to reach their fitness goals; however, I’ve had my share of clients who have let it be known that they really didn’t want to exercise or that it really wasn’t a priority.  Trust me, I’ve heard it all by way of excuses, special requests and comments.  Most times they make me laugh, so for fun, here’s my top ten list of PERSONAL TRAINING CLIENTS SAY THE DARNDEST THINGS:  Now this is MY personal list.  I’m sure other trainers have their own list as well!
  • I like the way everything else looks, can we just work on my stomach?
  • I’ve had a long day.  Can we take it easy today?
  • I couldn’t find a sitter, so I brought my kids with me.  You don’t mind do you?
  • I love my curves so don’t make me skinny.
  • You’re gonna have to really work with me cause’ I love my fried food!
  • My last trainer used to have me do these different than this.
  • How many more of these do I have to do?
  • Sorry, I really need to cancel.  Girl, I partied way too hard last night.
  • I hate this exercise, can we do something else?
  • This is just too much.  I don’t think exercise is for me.
  • Are we done yet?

Make sure you are serious about reaching your fitness goals before you invest in a trainer.  Personal training is a valuable service that will help you look and feel your best ever, so attend your sessions with an open mind and know that your trainer wants nothing more than to see you succeed.

Getting Prepared for Ski Season

Tis’ the season for holiday cheer and to hit the slopes.  This is the time that many ski enthusiasts get geared up to enjoy the outdoors for cross country and downhill skiing or just to hang out at the lodge.  Whatever your level or interest is, there are many benefits to this winter activity for the whole family.  This segment from the show will get you prepared for a fun and safe time on the slopes.

Got Golf?

golf ball on teeIt’s golf season!  Golf enthusiasts around the world are pulling out their clubs, preparing their golf wardrobe and calling their buddies to head to the course; and YES, I’ll be one of them.  My dad, Charles Foster is a retired golf pro and instructor.  For years, he’s been telling me about the health benefits that come with playing golf.  I never took it seriously or spent much time because I thought it was a slow paced sport that couldn’t possibly offer a good workout.  Well after getting more involved, I realized that it really does offer some incredible mental and physical benefits.  So, I produced a short video to share all that it offers so you, too, can experience the sport that so many love.

Gym Etiquette 101

cd_gimnasio-6Working on my physical and mental well-being is my main priority while at the gym; however, it’s hard to focus when there are so many distractions that make the gym a very uncomfortable place. So I want to speak my mind about the irritating things that go on at the gym.  Here are the top 5 things I call annoying.

RETURN THE WEIGHTS
Hopefully the person before you returned the weights to their proper place because you should do the same for the next person. The system is set up for members to return the weights to the proper racks. Everyone’s time is valuable, so don’t send others on a wild goose chase for weights.

HANG IT UP
Turn the cell phone off for an hour for pete’s sake. Have a little balance in your life and devote some time to your workout. Now that many cell phones have a camera, your co-members might be uncomforable while you use your phone in the locker room and no one cares to hear your conversation. Most phones have voicemail, so let that feature work for you while you’re at the gym.

NO GROOMING ALLOWED
Crazy things happen in the wet area. I have to say that this isn’t the time to groom. Wearing shaving cream and shaving in the sauna is disgusting.  Although the steam allows for a better shave, no one wants to see you groom yourself.  And if you have sinus problems, please don’t bring Vicks and other ointments with you. These things can be very irritating to those around you.

CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELF
If you think shaving in the sauna is bad, imagine getting ready to use a machine and it’s full of sweat from the previous user. Come on!  You know you’re dripping wet, so wipe the machine after you’re done.  The gym provides a disinfectant and paper towels for that reason.

DON’T BECOME A STALKER
The gym may be a great place to meet people, but proceed with caution. Even if you think someone is hot, don’t follow him or her around the gym. You don’t want anyone to report you to security. Try to avoid staring and checking people out. It might offend someone and make them feel very uneasy.  Be courteous, speak, smile and continue with your workout.

If you fall into any of these categories, but never realized it until now, it’s not too late to improve your gym etiquette. Let’s find harmony in the gym so that we all can accomplish our goals in a productive, safe, clean and peaceful environment.

How To Make Exercise Fit Your Life

Mention exercise and people take off running the other way.  Why is it that we dread working out so much?  Why is it the last thing on most people’s list?  I say, exercise gets such a bad rap.  As a trainer, I’ve heard it all; it’s too hard, it’s boring or it’s time consuming.  If you’ve used any of these excuses, you simply haven’t found activities that you enjoy or any that fit easily into your life.

The key here is to find ways to get moving, while accomplishing your goals and going about your day.  A workout strategy I share with clients and friends is what I call, “Multi-task Fitness.”  Sound corny?  Well, here’s how it works.  Whatever your need is during the day tap into an activity that will help you fulfill that need, while burning calories.  Let me give you a few examples: [Read more…]

Stretching Does The Body Good

Did you stretch today?  If not, it isn’t too late.  You can stop what you’re doing right now and reach your hands up over your head toward the ceiling.  Hold this stretch for 15 seconds and breathe deeply, inhale through yur nose for 4 counts, filling your belly, then exhale through your mouth for 8 counts.  Didn’t that feel great?  Along with prayer or meditation, this is the perfect way to start each day.

Another ideal time to stretch is at the gym; however, most people start their workout without a warm up and stretch session. This could be the perfect set up for injury and muscle strain.  It’s advised that you stretch before and after your workout whether it’s a cardiovascular activity or strength training.

Stretching comes with many perks: [Read more…]