Someone joining a gym is a big deal. It's not easy for everyone, and here's why.
If you're someone who is a little insecure, you don't immediately look at a gym as the place that's going to help you overcome those insecurities. You think about:
Are people going to judge me, and think I don't belong?
I don't know how to work the machines, so I'm going to look stupid.
If I fail, everyone's going to know. I'm safer trying at home.
If you fall into that category, read on! If not, read on anyway, because maybe there's a better gym for you!
I'm going to take you through the things that actually matter in a gym, even if you don't realize it. You may think that a modern-looking gym with brand new equipment is the way to go, but I'm going to dig a little deeper into the important stuff!
1. You're a person, not a number
If you fell into the above category, I'm going to assume that the thought of you walking into a gym is pretty scary. When you do finally make that decision (and you definitely should!), you want to walk into a gym that genuinely cares. You want a smiling face to greet you, sit down with you, and speak about your goals. If you don't get that, walk out. If they don't care about you from the start, they're not going to care about you once you join.
2. Pick community over style
When you walk into a brand new gym, they have the "wow-factor". It looks amazing, so it must be amazing right? wrong.
The look might get you to join, but it won't help you achieve your goals, and it definitely won't help you if you feel unmotivated later down the track.
Look for gyms that are based around community. The ones where staff say hello to their members, and actually know their names. The ones where members talk, laugh, and support each other. I promise you, a good community within your gym is going to do a lot more for you than a stylish gym ever would.
3. Look for variety
When I say variety, I don't mean they have 139304757 different machines. I mean they have some pin-loaded machines, some cable machines, some free weight equipment, and some cardio equipment. Exercise routines can become stale, so having options is important.
4. Do they offer programs?
What is the point of joining a gym if you don't know what to do? No one wants to walk around completely unsure. A bad gym won't offer anything. A good gym will offer guidance. An even better gym will have steps in place to ensure you know exactly what you're doing!
MY TOP PICK: After shopping around at multiple gyms, as well as my previous experiences with gyms, one gym really stood out, Anytime Fitness (so much so that I joined!)
The following points really put Anytime Fitness above the rest.
I was greeted by a happy, smiling face. We went over my goals, had a laugh, and I was taken on a tour of the facility. The gym featured:
Pin Loaded and Plate loaded equipment
A large variety of cardio equipment
Free weights and Racks
Functional Racks with lots of functional equipment
I was then offered a FREE personal training session to set up my programs, as well as follow up appointments. On top of that, I was shown the AF workouts app, which gave me thousands of workouts and instructional videos, all covered under my very affordable membership, AND a rewards system where I would earn points for doing a workout, and then be able to claim prizes.
I am now 2 weeks into my membership. The staff and personal trainers greet me by name (my last gym didn't even know my name). They approach me to ask about my day, see how my training is going, and so on.
As well as this, I've made 10+ new friendships, with beautiful members who approached me knowing that I was new, as they hadn't seen me around.
Most Anytime Fitness clubs will have a beauty bar, with hairdryers, straighteners, deodorant, dry shampoo, hair ties, and more! They are really well equipped, making it easy for you to go before work.
The equipment is NEVER BROKEN! And if anything does break, it is repaired or replaced immediately.
Anytime Fitness scores 10/10 from me!
This blog post was written on November 3rd, 2019.