Best Tips for Gym Beginners (+ FREE Workout Plan)

It is not often that we get to have a real talk on tips for gym beginners. This is because gym intimidation has become something we laugh about without calling out those who perpetrate it.
Newbies need information on how to navigate the gym and kind people in the gym who can correct them without making them feel small or take a video for social for gym beginners

Overcoming gym intimidation

People who complain about how busy the gym will get in January do not realize that they make it hard for gym newbies to comfortably find their way around the gym because of their rude stares or patronizing attitude.

Over the years, I have noticed that most people who join the gym at the beginning of the year fail to stick to their ‘new year, new me’ resolutions, partly because of the judgmental attitudes of gym regulars.

Gym intimidation usually starts with a meme here and there on social media, and before you know it, someone is recording you while you are trying to figure things out in the gym. Ultimately, this results in the beginners giving up on going to the gym and their fitness journey.

I believe that any person who decides to join the gym has the right kind of motivation to keep going, but gives up on their fitness goals when they feel that all the eyes on the gym are on them.

These eyes seem to shout –I am better than you, you are so out of shape, or you have no idea what you are doing.

Gym tips for beginners that will make going to the gym so much easier

Gym tips for beginners female

One of the important tips for gym beginners is that you cannot control the behavior of another person, but you can change yours, and this is what this article is about to teach you.

Yes, you will experience some discomfort as you learn new exercises, but that should not be a reason to quit.

Everyone starts from the same point no matter their shape and size- the people who are so intimidating in the gym also started the same way.

 To remain focused in the gym, you should learn to immerse yourself in the process and be gentle but firm with yourself.

 Any time you step into the gym, know that you are already getting closer to achieving the goals you have set for yourself. Always remember to move with purpose in the gym and exercise with a plan.

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Best Tips for Gym Beginners

Tips for gym beginners

1. You are enough

You are probably rolling your eyes right now and wondering what this point has to do with tips for gym beginners!

Remember, I mentioned earlier that you cannot change another person’s behavior toward you in the gym, but, you can change how you behave and feel about yourself.

Right here is where that process starts. Before you even step into the gym, you must exude confidence by loving yourself first and appreciating just how enough you are the way you are.

So here’s what I want you to do- Before you set foot in the gym, you need to say to yourself, ‘I AM ENOUGH’, over and over, every day and night.

Write it down on your fridge, bathroom mirror, or in your car, put it up as a screensaver for your phone or computer and wherever you can see it daily.

 This step is important because when you can recognize just how awesome you are, it won’t matter what kind of judgmental people you come across in the gym.

I AM ENOUGH - Smart Tips for Gym Beginners

Nobody’s opinion about how you look will matter if you reshape your thinking. You will walk with your head held high, no matter how many people stare at you in the gym.

Believing in yourself is what will help you achieve your weight loss or fitness goals. By renewing your mind, you will ultimately transform your body.

I rewired my thinking after I watched a YouTube video of Marisa Peer where she talks about a fat celebrity that lost weight after she talked to him about how he didn’t think he was enough.

She asked him to say ‘I am enough ‘over and over every day, and 6 weeks later, this guy lost massive weight.
I have linked this video at the end of the post if you would like to dig deeper into changing your mindset.

2. Get clear on your purpose for joining the gym

It is important to know your ‘’why’’. When it gets hard in the gym, you will need to remember why you are doing it.

 When it’s cold and dark outside, you must have a strong why you need to get off the couch and go to the gym.

When someone breaks your heart or life seems to be going against you, you will need to look at your ”why” and get up and hit the gym.

Your why must be so strong that when you feel like you have given your all and have nothing left, you can go to that inner place within you and give it everything you have got.

Be clear about why you want to join the gym. If you want to lose weight, be very clear about why you want to lose weight.

Be clear about why gym intimidation will not stop you from showing up at the gym every day.

 If your ”why” is strong, you will always show up and do the work. But, if your ”why” is weak, you will find a good excuse for not working out on a particular day, or allowing people to make you feel small at the gym.

Gym tips for beginners – weight loss

Gym tips for beginners weight loss

3. Don’t compare yourself to others

It is not unusual for someone to join the gym and start comparing themselves to others.

I have seen this so many times. People who do this quit along the way because they start comparing their progress with other gym-goers.

Your fitness journey is unique and different from the person in the gym next to you. You may have started your fitness journey a week ago, while the other person may have been at it for two years.

The only comparison you should be making is between the person you are today and the person you were last week, last month, and yesterday, etc.

best gym tips for beginners weight loss

4. Be consistent in the gym

Consistency is one of the top workout tips for beginners to focus on because it is the one thing that will lead to reaching your goal.

When you know what you are going after (your ‘’why’’), you will find it easier to stay consistent with your exercise routine at the gym.

To get results from your workouts, you have to be consistent.

Nobody has ever got fat from eating one doughnut, just like no one has ever got a 6-pack from doing 20 push-ups only once.

Consistency is what drives results. Start small. Start by working out 20 minutes a day 3 times a week, and then build on that.

If you start by doing 1 hour 5 times a week, you will burn out and fail soon.

Start with what you can handle – If you can only walk on the treadmill for 20 minutes three times a day, walk on that treadmill for that amount of time and days until it gets easy.

Once you can handle 20 minutes thrice a week, add another day and walk 4 times a week, then once you are nailing it, increase the duration of your workout.

Gym tips for females

Gym Tips & Tricks and Workout Tips for Beginners

5. Wear the right workout clothes

Workout clothes affect your performance. Your exercise clothes should be breathable, comfortable, and functional. Wearing the wrong workout gear can affect your confidence in the gym.

Picture yourself doing squats in a crowded gym, wearing leggings that are see-through or that keep rolling down! Not something you would want to happen to you, right?

Pay attention to what you choose to wear to the gym as this will boost your confidence and performance.

To help you buy the best workout leggings take a look at these non-see-through workout leggings.

You should also wear the correct workout shoes based on your goals. If you will be doing cross-training or strength training, you must have shoes that fit the purpose.

Check out: Best weight-lifting and cross-training shoes for women

If your goal is cardio training and spending lots of time on cardio machines, invest in proper running shoes.
Check out: Best running shoes for beginners 

6. Have an effective workout plan

tips for gym beginners plus free 4-week workout plan for weight loss female

If you choose to take away only one piece of advice from these tips for gym beginners, walk away knowing that you must have an effective workout plan when you visit the gym.

When you are just starting, consider hiring a personal trainer, paying for a training plan, or using one of the free workout plans for beginners.

Don’t go to the gym and expect to just wing it. Know what you are going to improve on every single day.

I have put together a free 30 –day fat-burning workout routine for beginners that you can get started on.

It’s a workout plan tailored to get you from flab to fab at a pace you can keep up with.

You can find the free workout plan here: 30-Day Fat Burning Workout Routines for Beginners.

If you waltz into the gym without a proper workout plan, you may end up getting overwhelmed or side-tracked by everyone’s activity. Remember, failing to plan is planning to fail.

7. Warming Up and Cooling Down is Important

Warming Up and Cooling Down is Important

To avoid injury, ensure that you warm up before exercising and also finish your workout session by stretching the muscles worked.

Word of caution– Avoid doing a static warmup, which basically is holding a stretch for 30 minutes or longer.

Warm up your muscles by performing dynamic stretches (you slowly warm up the body through a movement).

Examples of dynamic warm-ups for beginners include jogging in place, leg swings, arm swings, hip circles, and toe touches.

Also, remember that during the first few days or weeks of your becoming active by working out regularly, your muscles will be very sore.

There are, however, remedies to relieve muscle soreness, such as stretching after the gym, foam rolling, and a bath soak.

8. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

One of the best gym tips and workout tips for beginners I received way back when I was just starting was this- never be afraid to ask for help.

If you are unsure how a gym machine works or how to do a particular exercise, ask gym staff for assistance. They are there for you and happy to help.

Most gyms will give you a tour of the gym when you sign up. You can use this as an opportunity to ask how to use the equipment that seemingly terrifies you or that you are not familiar with.

discover gym tips for beginners to make gym life easier

Don’t try to figure it all out on your own. There might be someone helpful near you that you may ask for assistance.

I am yet to meet anyone in the gym who says no when I need assistance figuring out the equipment works or how to perform an exercise correctly.

Of course, there will always be a few people in the gym that would like to see others struggle. I have noticed that even these gym rats are happy to boost their ego by showing you how it is done – but only if you ask them.

That said, there are people who do not like to be bothered or interrupted while they grind. This brings us to our next gym tip for beginners.

9. Don’t start unnecessary conversations

Feel free to offer compliments if you admire someone’s commitment or physique, but do not drag that into a long and pointless chat.

Everyone’s time matters. People go to the gym to do the work not to catch up on the latest gossip.

You have to respect people’s time in the gym. Most importantly, YOU MUST RESPECT YOUR TIME IN THE GYM BY DOING YOUR WORKOUT.

 This gym tip is not only for beginners but for everyone who walks through any gym door.

First day at gym tips for beginners 10. Wipe down the equipment after use

One of the gym tips for beginners are constantly hammered on is wiping down gym equipment after use.

We all get sweaty to a point while exercising. The sweat does not clean itself up. It sticks to the equipment you are using or lying down on, even if you cannot see it.

A sweaty bench might be okay if it’s your own sweat that you are dealing with. However, after you are done with the equipment, be considerate of the next person and wipe it down.

Most gyms have a strict policy on carrying your towel on the gym floor for good reason (especially during the pandemic).

11. Clean up after yourself

what to do at the gym beginner. gym tips for beginners female

Don’t leave the workout area messy. Again, think of the next person. When you use free weights, please put them back in their appropriate places.

The same applies if you use a yoga mat or the step, be thoughtful and place them back where they are stored.

12. Don’t hog the equipment or workout spaces

If you need to rest, use your phone, take endless selfies or chat with a buddy, be mindful of others and make room for them to use the equipment or workout station. Avoid doing super-sets or using cardio machines for more than 20-30 minutes during peak times.

Gym etiquette for newbies13. Don’t forget personal hygiene 

Well, the best of the workout and tips for gym beginners were saved for last!

At the gym we all sweat. Like a lot. This means that musty smells are acceptable to a certain degree.

The problem starts if you wear the same workout clothes you previously exercised in, without washing them.

You may not smell your body odor, but others will.

To put it nicely, you should shower and wash your gym clothes as often as possible.

It also helps to wear deodorant, but only after you have showered or made sure your clothes are clean.

Masking the musty smells with deodorant does not work as well as you might think, don’t ask how I know, lol. Deodorant actually amplifies the body odor.

Wash your workout clothes after use, or hang them to dry in the sun.

There you have it, gym newbies. I have just had a straight talk with you about workout tips for beginners and gym tips and tricks that you need.

READ: How to get the musty smell out of gym clothes

Final thoughts on tips for gym beginners

Gym Tips & Tricks and Workout Tips for Beginners

At the beginning of each year, it is sort of tradition that gyms fill up with the “new year’s resolutions crowd.”

Almost everyone probably bets that the resolutioners will give up on their fitness resolutions just before February.

The hard truth is that this actually ends up happening because we enable it. People give up before the first quarter of the year is even over.

I want to say this to established gym-goers who often give off this vibe. At one point, we all were beginners at the gym, without a clue on how to use equipment and gym etiquette.

We should support anybody who wants to get fit, not bet on how long until they quit.

If this post on gym tips for gym beginners can change just one newbie’s life, I will have done my work because that person will appreciate this and share these gym tips with the next newbie.

Finally, we all have our own gym pet peeves, but as far as gym tips for beginners and gym etiquette go, this is the bee’s knees.

If it is not common courtesy, just shrug it off. Remember, you are at the gym to better yourself, not to work around other people’s irritations.

Once you have graduated from beginner status, remember to be nice to the next gym newbie and share with them these gym tips for beginners.

Oh, and here’s that video I spoke about earlier about the importance of changing your mindset first if you want to know how best to start working out in the gym.

5 thoughts on “Best Tips for Gym Beginners (+ FREE Workout Plan)”

  1. Don’t ever be afraid to ask things, especially ask from a professional,. People working out in the gym already have experience and they will help you out if you ask them. Don’t be a dummy, You can save so much of your precious time and money by asking the experts.

  2. Don’t stare or gawk at people while they’re working out. For some it’s a big distraction from their routine. And for goodness sakes no matter how hot or not-so-much someone else is, don’t ogle, sneer, or glare at them! It’s just plain rude!


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