Fitness Health

How to Maximize Your Time at the Gym

Written by Tom Bonanti

          Do you ever put off going to the gym, or just skip it altogether because it simply won’t fit into your schedule? Do you start the day with the best of intentions, but when it comes right down to it, you’re too exhausted or too distracted to even think treadmills or dumbbells? You just might be making the whole process of exercise and fitness too complicated. Working out should be a blast, exhilarating, an event to look forward to! Here’s a list of fun, snappy suggestions that’ll not only make it easier for you to get to the gym; they’ll also help you make the most of every precious second you’re there!

           Keep that gym bag packed and handy. Even if you’re not planning to work out, take a packed gym bag to work and leave it in your car. If the spirit moves you, you won’t have to bother going home and risk wasting time. All you have to do is clear out after work and head straight to the gym.

          Keep your routine varied. If you’re bored with the “same old, same old”, then it’s time to implement some changes into your fitness regime. Opt for taking a refreshing swim in the summer months. Sign up for some classes with other “fitness minded” people. Try out new pieces of equipment. Invest in a personal trainer to help you chart new goals. Most gyms even offer complimentary sessions with an instructor to help you become acclimated.

          Don’t waste time. Once you get to the gym, make the most of every moment you’re there. Instead of just hopping on a treadmill, setting it for 30 minutes, and staying there for the duration, mix it up by taking some light dumbbells on board for arm curls and shoulder raises. Cardio is super, but combining it with weight training will maximize your workout to make you stronger and leaner. When you’re lifting weights, it’s important to break between sets, but no more than 20-30 seconds, tops! Make the most of rest times by stretching, drinking water, or even doing lunges around the gym as you’re waiting for equipment to become free.

          Pay attention to what you’re wearing. If you plod around the gym in the same old shabby sneakers, baggy sweatpants, and tattered T shirt, chances are you’ll soon feel just as frumpy as you look. Treat yourself to some new workout gear – color coordinated, nicely fitted shorts and tops, and a new pair of cross-trainers –  you’ll be delighted in the difference, not just in your confidence, but also in the quality of your work outs.

          Music makes a difference. Gym radio stations and music channels on the TV’s can really get tedious or even annoying. Create your own playlist that’ll keep you energized and happy. Try different kinds of music as you circuit train with weights, churn out the cardio, or while you’re cooling off. If you’re not a fan of music, down load an audio book or the latest episodes of Game of Thrones or The Get Down to help you burn calories on the elliptical or treadmill.

          Your workout time is an essential part of your life. Make it a celebratory event that is healthy, fun, and productive. No more complications. No more excuses. Just do it!

Tom Bonanti is a certified personal trainer and licensed massage therapist (MA#40288) with his own gym and  at 1271 NE 9thAvenue in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. 33304. Contact Tom [email protected] with questions or set up a free consultation by calling (954) 557-1119.