WorkoutblogpicKevin came home from the gym last week telling me there was no one around.  He said it felt like the “calm before the storm.” It’s no surprise the gym is sure to be packed in the upcoming weeks with people making resolutions to live healthier.  I have to admit, I don’t have a gym membership because I don’t like working out in social environments, but I did have a gym membership once and I regularly fought the beginning of the year crowds with no frustration.  Here’s the majority of what I’m seeing from people who work out regularly, people who already had memberships before the year began:

Posts about gym regulars dreading going this time of year, looking forward to March and April when the numbers will start to decline, just waiting for resolutioners to give up on their goals so exercising can be more convenient again.

It takes a lot to work out at a gym.  The first part of that is just motivating yourself to get to the gym, which is easier for some people than others.  Being in the gym can be overwhelming for first time gym goers with all of the equipment to learn and intimidating fitness fanatics giving off critical vibes.  Even if gym regulars aren’t giving off critical vibes, being new to a gyms doesn’t come along with any sort of comfort or confidence.  Any new situation requires courage.

I can see how limited gym equipment can be frustrating, but wouldn’t it be nice if we encouraged people with healthy goals?  At the end of the day, everyone in the gym is there to try to get fit and live a more gratifying life regardless of their current fitness level.  Maybe a sense of community and encouragement would help some new gym members stick with it.  Even if just a small percentage of new members stay, that means more happy and healthy people in the community, and that seems like something we should all be positive about.

We’ve all tried things that we realized we didn’t like – I’m the perfect example.  I used to work out at the gym five days a week and I love using equipment I can’t afford.  But at the end of the day I realized working out without anyone else around was more enjoyable for me and I no longer have a gym membership.  Some people will stick with it, and some people won’t. Some will fall in love with running or spin class while others realize they’d rather get out of the gym and join a bowling league.  Whatever everyone decides to do, supporting others who are making positive changes in their lives can’t hurt anyone.

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