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Getting the best from gym m'ship

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#1 roses99

Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:45 AM

Hi everyone,

I'm joining the gym this week on an unlimited 12 month membership. I badly want to get fit this year. I'm not overweight (actually, I'm underweight), but I want to tone up and build muscle. I've done a bit of running over the past two years (ran a 10km and 5km event), but it's been very sporadic and other than that, I've done virtually no regular exercise in years.

I've chosen a gym that's really close to my house. It has classes early in the morning, so I can go and then still be back in time to help DH get the kids up and ready for school. I've put off gym membership in the past because the kids were young and DH worked away a lot etc. But the time is right now.

Because I'm all super-enthusiastic right now, I'm considering classes every morning. But I assume this is too much?

Can anyone tell me what works for them? How many classes per week? And do you mix that with a machines routine? And/or swimming laps? Any personal experience would be greatly appreciated!

#2 Mozzie1

Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:54 AM

I lost about 10kg a few years ago pretty much from gym classes alone. I know. You are supposed to mix them up with other things, but I enjoy them and hate doing weights by myself!

I tried to do at least 2 weight classes a week (body pump or basic training), then 2 or 3 spin classes or aerobics classes.

They are tough at first, but get easier then very enjoyable.

Good luck!

#3 roses99

Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:56 AM

Thanks Mozzie1  original.gif

Did you have to build up to that number of classes a week?

I'm thinking classes will work for me too, because I find it hard to push myself if I'm just working out on my own (ie running - I will very easily talk myself out of going further/faster).

#4 Bex_star

Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:57 AM

Congrats on the gym membership and getting some time out for yourself. You won't regret it!
As a qualified Personal Trainer I can tell you that your program depends on your goals and current fitness level as well as interests.
Doing a class each morning shouldn't be too much as long as you have variety.Grab a copy of the gym class timetable, sit down with a cuppa and start highlighting what interests you.
For muscle gain head to classes such as "Body Pump", and incorporate some yoga or Pilates for toning.  RPM/Cycle is great for cardio and muscle building (all those hill climbs!).
For some more defined muscle building I would get a weights program for use in the weights area. Your gym may offer a free program to all members. Otherwise jump online and research some. Michelle Bridges has some fantastic program's and books for inspiration.
Good luck on your health and fitness journey. A healthy woman is a strong woman. You'll sleep better, look better and just feel better!

#5 snuffles

Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:59 AM

Honestly I find listening to my body to be the best route.  I currently do 4 to 6 classes a week, I find I have best results doing these over three days a week (any three) and allowing my body to rest or just do light exercise like walking between times.  I vary when I go and what I do around what my family needs, it also keeps my body guessing and it is really helping me build muscle.

For example this week I'm doing two classes Tuesday evening, one Thursday morning, and two Saturday morning.

I push myself to the absolute maximum in all of my classes though, I know people who do more classes but don't push as hard.  For me though, pushing to the max three days a week gives me the best results.

Do be careful that you are doing the exercises correctly, when you first start go easy and make sure your form is correct before adding a lot of weight or pushing yourself very hard, you don't want to end up with an injury.  Tell the instructor that you are new and they should guide you as to how to start.

It is so worth it original.gif, I've been going nearly 12 months and I am amazed at how far I've come in that time.  I keep having to remind myself to take my rest days because I am soooo addicted.

#6 Ferelsmegz

Posted 07 January 2013 - 11:01 AM

I use a 24 hour gym... so there is no pool no classes etc so they arent options.

But I go 6/7 days and workout for an hour each time - im currently doing the 12wbt so that is helping, but I started a couple of months before that and ive kept it up.

#7 HeartMyBoys

Posted 07 January 2013 - 11:16 AM

Since you mainly want to tone and shape, you should do at least 3 days of strength training. As PP's have said, pump class is great for that. Also you could have 1 of the staff write you up a program to follow, which targets exactly what areas you want to work on.
I used to train a specific area on one day, then another the next. As in, one day i'd do legs and back, then the next arms and chest. It gives muscles a chance to rest and repair. Everyone is different though, and you'll find a program that works for you.

#8 Mozzie1

Posted 07 January 2013 - 11:32 AM

QUOTE (roses99 @ 07/01/2013, 11:56 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Thanks Mozzie1  original.gif

Did you have to build up to that number of classes a week?

I'm thinking classes will work for me too, because I find it hard to push myself if I'm just working out on my own (ie running - I will very easily talk myself out of going further/faster).

I had been doing 2-3 classes a week for a long time, which was maintaining my (over) weight, but not shifting it. So I guess I did build up to it, but not consciously IYKWIM.

#9 roses99

Posted 07 January 2013 - 03:30 PM

Thanks everyone  original.gif

Lots of great advice there, which is much appreciated.

I've had a look at the program and, if I go at 5:45 each morning I can do:

Monday: Body Pump
Tuesday: Pilates
Wednesday: Cardio class
Thursday: Swimming (just laps on my own)
Friday: RPM

Hopefully that'll be enough variety. I like that every second day is a less intense class. And I'm excited about getting back in the pool too. The membership includes having a program done up for weights etc, so I'll keep my mind open about that. But I think the classes in the morning will be the best fit for me.

Yay - can't wait to get down there to sign up tomorrow!

#10 Canberra Chick

Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:30 PM

I'm actually a bit odd in that I don't really like classes and I use my gym mostly for weights.

I do weights three times a week and when it's really hot I go and do my cardio there three times a week (mix of bike and elliptical trainer as I cannot run on a treadmill!).

#11 spando

Posted 07 January 2013 - 05:13 PM

I have found that rather than doing say 6 classes a week I double up. So at the moment I go on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday but do the first class at 5.15 and second at 6.15 which is an express class that finishes at 7. My fitness has improved massively since doubling up like this and I still get some later mornings which I found really good as 5 days a week at 5.30 can get hard!

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