Fitness for Beginners: Your Guide to Getting Started


I remember what it was like to wander around a gym for the first time. I looked around at all the machines I didn't understand how to use, the bodybuilders that clearly lived there and knew how to use them all, and the endless rows of dumbbells waiting for someone who knew what to do with them. If I had gone there all by myself, I probably would have just left out of fear of looking like the newbie who didn't know what they were doing...

It's intimidating! But it doesn't have to be. 

I'm creating this guide to be what I wish I had when I was at this stage of my fitness journey. Years ago, I was you. Every person you see in the gym was there at one point!

So don't give up if you're new to working out and a little overwhelmed. Help is on the way! 

Here's what you need to know: 

1. Start with a very small, manageable time commitment.

If you've never worked out before or you've been on a break from it for a period of time, start small! Don't expect yourself to jump in and work out 6 days per week right off the bat. I think we believe, even if it's just subconsciously, that working towards our fitness/weight loss goals has to be hard in order to see change. It doesn't!

You can work out for as little as 30 minutes and see change if you STICK to your commitment. 

Those people that aim for hour long workouts 6 days a week right off the bat end up feeling run down and ready to quit after just a couple of weeks. 

Think of this as a long term game. 

You're more likely to stick around if you take tiny baby steps each week and stick to these smaller time commitments. 

2. The Internet is your friend!

We are blessed to live in an age when technology is truly at our fingertips. Utilize it! 

Especially at the beginning, it's SO important to spend time understanding the different muscles on your body and what they do. As your learning new exercises, make a point to figure out which muscle they work and how. 

This helped me get to a point at which, even if I've never seen a specific gym machine before in my life, if I read the description on it saying which muscle it's for, I can figure out how to use it. If I have limited equipment available to me, I can improvise and come up with exercises that work the right muscles. 

If you'd like help getting started with this, you can find some of my own workouts and what muscles they work HERE.

3. If you're trying to change your body, your diet matters... and it doesn't have to suck. 

I don't know why this can be such a tough pill to swallow. 

Often my personal training and nutrition clients come to me with a belief that the diet should be strict and extreme. In fact, they ASK for restrictions. I then have to explain to them that they will see the HIGHEST success with LESS rules and restrictions. 

Seriously. I promise!

When I introduce the concept of flexible dieting, it often seems so easy for people that they convince themselves it can't work. 

It works. Extremely well. And yes, it feels pretty easy. 

My advice to you as a beginner to weight loss and/or fitness is to ditch the Keto, low fat, clean eating, whole 30, 1200 calorie diet crazes. Don't even bother putting yourself through that misery! The heavy restrictions will leave you feeling mentally and physically run down and quickly on the verge of a weight rebound.

Flexible dieting, on the other hand, will allow you to continue to eat all of the foods you love and lose weight. It is by far the easiest way to manage your cravings. 

I am saying this as someone who has had personal experience with clean eating and flexible dieting. The flexible dieting experience is far more enjoyable and gets longer lasting results. 

With a flexible diet, you can have dessert. You can go out to eat. You can go on vacation. You can drink alcohol. Essentially, you can continue to LIVE your LIFE and still achieve your goals.

4. Try a group fitness class

Group fitness is a great way to get exposed to exercise in a fun, welcoming environment with others!

There's a great sense of community. You're bound to meet other beginners to push you to keep going as well as seasoned gym veterans who can show you the ropes in and out of class. 

Plus, it allows you to learn from others right off the bat! Usually at no cost to you as most gyms offer group fitness classes as an included part of your membership. These classes will give you exposure to different cardio formats as well as how to resistance train to reach different goals. Plus, the playlists and workouts are all planned FOR you so you can focus on getting to your goals and let someone else come up with the exercise plan!

 5. Progress can (and should) be measured by more than just the scale!

Did you know your body can look COMPLETELY different at the exact same weight at two different times? 

You can change your body composition and not necessarily see the number on the scale change! If you have lost body fat and added muscle to your body, there is a chance you could see your weight stay the same or even jump UP but have a tighter, leaner look! That's because  muscle weighs more than fat. 

I have clients take pictures WEEKLY to keep track of progress in addition to monitoring their weight.

The scale is a great indicator of change over time but it's not the only indicator that matters!

Take and look back at pictures, keep track of your hip and waist measurements, weigh yourself, and pay attention to how your clothes fit. These are all indicators of change. 

Make a point to take pictures, weigh and measure first thing in the morning after using the bathroom on the same day and at the same time each week. This ensures that change can be measured as accurately as possible by mitigating the risk of water weight and other factors. 

6. Get a couple pairs of dumbbells and some bands for home. 

This will help so much with sticking to your exercise commitments!

Let's be honest, some days we just don't feel like trekking to the gym or fighting the crowds. 

You can still get a GREAT workout in from home. 

It doesn't matter WHERE you choose to workout. It only matters that you do and that you make a point to be consistent with training sessions per week. 

7. Figure out what your goals are right from the start.

If you don't go into this with concrete goals, it's far less likely that you're going to stick to your training routine. 

You need to have a concrete WHY that you can come back to on days when you don't feel motivated.

It's hard to hear this sometimes but nobody feels motivated to go to the gym all the time. You can't wait until you feel like going! Sometimes, it has to be done without WANTING to be there. Have a powerful why and even when you don't want to train, you will have a deep desire for a positive end result and a good reason to go. 

Want more guidance as you get started? 

I've been helping women just like you reach their body goals for over a year - from weight loss to competition goals to metabolic rehabilitation to muscle gain. 

If you're ready for the rest of my workout and nutrition secrets and want to transform your body the fun way, APPLY HERE for a customized training and nutrition program. I will be there to coach you every step of the way so we can get you better, lasting results. 

Not convinced? Check out some of these amazing success stories from women JUST LIKE YOU. Stop telling yourself you're too old, too far off, too busy, too tired. You are NONE of these things! 

No more waiting for the perfect time. There will never be a perfect moment. The time to make a change is always RIGHT NOW! Let me show you what you can do. 

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