The Pros and Cons of a Gym Membership
A gym membership is often a staple of the fitness world. Most people have or have had one at some point or another, as most beginners will turn to the gym. They also open up a lot of doors for your training. There are a lot of mixed reviews about gyms and exercise in general though, so sometimes it can be a good idea to take a step back and look at what they have to offer and if they are the right fit for you. Here's a quick overlook:
It's only fair to start with the benefits of a gym membership. They do have a lot to offer in many different areas, and they absolutely deserve the recognition for it!
The variety of equipment in a gym has to be one of the most significant selling points for them. They offer a vast range of machines, free weights and space for you to make the most of - whatever way you see fit. Not only that, but you can also make sure you are doing it well, as gym staff are always ready to give you a hand. Pretty much every fitness goal is catered for, and the quality of the equipment will usually be to a very high standard. It's great for a solid workout.
Classes and personal trainers
On top of the equipment that gyms have to offer, they have a range of expert guidance too. It may not always be included in your membership, but there are always options out there that you can make the most of. Classes are one of the most popular examples, as you can train with people in the same position as you under someone who knows what they are doing and can keep you motivated. Awesome! But if you want dedicated guidance only for your needs and style of training, you can go for a personal trainer. They offer personalised and guided workouts to make sure you're getting the most out of your workout!
The gym offers something that other workout options can't. As you would have to make an effort to get ready and get to the gym, chances are that you won't be sitting around once you are there! You will want to make the most of your time and membership, so you will make sure to put in the effort. This can serve as great motivation. Plus, there are fewer things that can distract or keep you from working out.
Now, this one is a bit up in the air, but it's still worth looking at if it can apply to you. The more expensive gym membership options often offer you even more extras than what you've already looked at. Pools and saunas are some of the more popular ones at that. They can be an incredibly effective way to make sure that you're recovering correctly after your workout, or that you have an enjoyable experience when you go there.
Finally, we need to look at the social aspects of exercise that a gym has to offer. Gyms are a great place to meet new people in the same position as you if that's something you are after. You can talk to people when you're there, train with a friend or workout buddy, or interact during the fitness classes. It's an excellent way to push yourself and share your knowledge or absorb someone else's and make sure that your workouts are as good as they can be. Being sociable is always good after all - unless you're more of a lone wolf. In that case, you can still put your headphones on and zone out.
So those are the pros of the gym, but for this article to be a balanced insight, the disadvantages need to be looked at too. There are fewer cons than there are pros, don't get us wrong, so it's always wise to consider both carefully before you make up your mind.
Crowds and queueing
One of the biggest turns offs about a gym membership is the business they bring. Like all service sellers, they have peak and off-peak times, usually split into two membership categories. Peak times will often result in a very, very busy gym. You may have to queue for a few machines, and it may drag your workout out a bit longer than it should. It depends when you have the time to go and what fits in with your schedule, but most people are at the gym before 9 AM or after 5 PM. If you can get there around that, you may find it more enjoyable.
Staying on the same theme that we're already on, the business of the gym or just the general hustle and bustle can be a little distracting at times. If you're trying to work out or even just focus, it can be really off-putting when you can see people waiting for the machine you're on or if you have to wait before you can move onto your next exercise. This doesn't happen all the time, but it definitely can.
Finally, the gym can be a little inconvenient. If the gym is nowhere near you, or you struggle to find the time to get there, it's hard to keep it up. You're probably going to be paying a good amount of money to be able to go, but if it just doesn't fit in with your lifestyle at the time, it can be quickly wasted. This is just part of life, and it's the same with most things. Your fitness has to work around your life if you want to keep it going in the long run.
Overall, it's down to your personal preference as to what is the right move for you. You can combine techniques or just stick with what you know. Everyone is different and has their own preferences at the end of the day, and that's understandable. (Make sure you know gym etiquette!) Find what it is that motivates you in the best way, and what is going to be practical and attainable in the long run. Your fitness shouldn't be a chore, and as long as you can work out around your life, you're good to go.
Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. Exercise.co.uk assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.
If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.