Gyms/fitness centers can be a bit intimidating at times. Especially large gyms with tons of in shape people working out. Now, this isn't an endorsement for Planet (UN)Fitness. I abhor that franchise. Any fitness center that claims it's a "judgment free" place but makes commercials that discriminate against people and serves donuts and pizza to members......uh, that's a problem.
But I digress....
So basically there are 2 ways to start your fitness journey: at home or at a fitness center. I've done both and will say your life/schedule will determine which fits you best.
Benefits of fitness centers: classes, free informational seminars, availability of personal training and equipment/amenities.
Cons: Can be pricey and just might not be your cup of tea.
Benefits of at-home workouts: Lower cost or free (the internet is a valuable tool in developing home workout routines, but if you have any limiting conditions....check with your physician first), DVDs are easy to follow and allow you to workout alone, you don't have to go anywhere.
Cons: Some people really benefit from working out with others motivation wise. Some people really need to get out of the house because it's easier for them quit at home.
You'll have to evaluate your priorities to decide which one will suit your needs.
If you decide to go the fitness center route; you're not alone. Many people join gyms in the new year. The key is to stick with it. And yes, you will have people that despise the new year's rush. They will be frustrated that every treadmill is taken or that you're working out on the equipment they want to use. Well you know what? You pay your membership dues just like them and don't let them intimidate you! Have confidence in the choice you've made to better your health!
One of the main things I see with a lot of newbies in the gym is using equipment improperly. If you don't know exactly how to use a piece of equipment, find someone that works there, and ask. We are more than happy to show you how to use it. I would rather see that, then watch someone hurt themselves.
If you decide to workout at home: start with simple stuff. You don't necessarily have to run out and by a whole home gym. Push-ups, sit-ups/crunches, squats.....just a few of the strength exercises you can do without any equipment!
Check out Tabata workouts (there are close to 1 million on Youtube), they are fast and effective.
Here's another one I like.....and you might like it too, if you're a Potter Nerd like me:
You can, as a family, do squats, jumping jacks or push-ups during commercials when watching television together! This is a great one since it's hard to get outside during the winter!
No matter where you start, at home or at a fitness center........it's just important that you start!