I realized just recently that I’d almost forgotten how to workout at the gym and I thought this would be a good time to cover this topic. It’s not just the pandemic that kept me home, but for years now, I’ve been a fan of home workouts.
It’s just easier to get a workout started, and finished, without having to pack a bag, get in the car, drive to a gym, put everything in in a locker, and then get a workout in.
However, this past week I was away from home, and I decided to take up a free pass at one of the gyms in Brooklyn, New York where my brother lives. I actually did two workouts during the week. I got my Monday work out in with the free pass, and then decided to just pay my way in for a Wednesday workout.
I follow a home bodyweight resistance training program. It’s incredibly powerful and if you’re looking to burn off unwanted fat while also building lean muscle, I don’t know a single workout routine that exists that is more effective than this one. You can learn about the entire program right here. I’m now doing a hybrid version of the workout which includes weights.
In this article, you’ll learn how to workout at the gym. And know this is coming from a guy who is just getting back into the gym too. This works whether you’re doing bodyweight training at home that you decide to move to another location just as well as it works for a full on weight resistance training program.
So here are the steps I suggest following in order to workout at the gym and get the most out of your time there.
Decide On A Solid Workout Program
I can’t stress this enough. If you’re going to go to the gym, don’t just blindly head over there and start doing what so many other gym goers do. That is, don’t start randomly lifting weights and using machines without having any kind of system or plan in place.
To me, that’s the same as “eating healthy” to lose weight. I see people get their diets wrong all the time, and they can’t figure out how to lose unwanted fat. It’s cause they aren’t eating at a calorie deficit. That’s the first step to burning off unwanted fat, and you can learn about that here.
If you want to get serious results, and transform your physique in just a few months, following a solid plan is everything. It’s just as important when it comes to eating as it is for working out.
As far as workouts go, I don’t trust free YouTube videos, or random apps that have hundreds of tutorials you can follow. They are not targeted enough with your specific goals in mind, which means you’ll be far less likely to get serious results by following them. The way I see it, if you’re going to work out anyway, why not get the most out of it and get transformative results as opposed to mediocre ones.
If you aren’t sure on what kind of workout program to follow, that’s fine. Certain programs are more suited for you than others depending on your goals. For instance, if you consider yourself to be overweight, or even stocky, one program may be a better fit for you than another. If you are skinny or consider yourself to be skinny-fat and want to gain muscle mass, then another program will suit you best.
Click here to take a physique quiz to find out what would be an appropriate workout program for your your body type.
How To Know If A Workout Program Is Effective
As I mentioned, it’s important to follow a powerful and proven workout routine backed by science, with success stories from hundreds of thousands of people who have before and after photos as proof of their results. In a solid program, you should be able to freely speak with these people too and pick their brains.
Whatever workout routine you go with should be easy to follow at the gym. You shouldn’t have any guesswork or questions as to where to start and what you need to do. It should all be clearly labeled so you know what to do from A to Z.
I followed a home bodyweight workout routine for several months, I’ve recently taken it to another level. I’m now doing a hybrid version of the same program. It’s transitioned from exclusive calisthenics to a combination of weight training and bodyweight training, and I’m loving it.
Both of these programs are fantastic, because they give you step by step instructions on exactly what you must do to achieve your desired body. You will have a very clear picture on exactly what you need to be doing during your workouts, whether at home or at the gym.
The Greek God Program is designed excusively for the gym, and you can learn about it here.
It’s ideal for people who are looking to gain weight in the form of lean muscle.
Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to work out 6 days a week to get insane results. You’ll be fine working out 3 days a week, with workouts that last approximately 45 minutes – 1 hour per session.
Bring The Right Tools With You To The Gym
This could be a dip belt. It could be a jump rope. It might be a weighted vest. It really depends on your needs, and you don’t need to know this right away. You’ll get a feel for all of this as you become used to the workout you choose to follow and what your body needs.
I’ve come to learn I definitely need to take a dip belt with me to the gym. I didn’t need one a few months ago, but I’ve increased my strength and changed up my routine. The gym I went to didn’t have one, so I had to improvise.
Another really important piece of equipment, which you probably take with you anyway, is your phone. I find it easier to take my iPad with me to take notes of the sets and reps I do. I use my phone as a timer in between sets.
You should always be taking notes of what you accomplished during each work out. This is how you measure progress and ensure that you’re moving towards your fitness goals. Results should be noticeable in the mirror week after week also.
Follow Your Chosen Workout Routine At The Gym
I strongly suggest that you have the workouts from your chosen workout routine listed out clearly on your phone or tablet in a spreadsheet. This way, you know exactly what you need to do each and every time you go to the gym. There is no guesswork when moving from one workout to the next. The workouts I’ve listed above supply this for you.
Once you become acquainted with the equipment and machines at the gym, you’ll move seamlessly from one workout to the next, especially when you have each and every exercise listed out in front of you.
That spreadsheet is important so you don’t fall into the trap of moving from machine to machine blindly without having a plan in place. The spreadsheet ensures you’re moving fluidly from one work out to the next, with the right timing in between sets, so that you’re in and out of the gym, and get a killer workout in minimal time.
A solid workout routine should be challenging and have sufficient rest time in between sets. You should be working hard but also not overworking yourself.
These types of things are dialed in properly with a good workout routine. Measuring progress is as simple as increasing the intensity of your workout every week.
For instance, I’m increasing the weight on my dips every week by about 5 pounds. That way I know I’m gaining strength and muscle progressively over time. I’m actually trying to gain weight right now. So, eating at a calorie surplus combined with serious progress every week at the gym is very important.
You should be making sure to increase intensity of your workout weekly, whether that’s doing hand stand push ups, or pistol squats. You don’t want to keep using the same resistance or weights week after week. Progress and gains are made by increasing the intensity of your workouts gradually.
This is another reason that excel sheet is so important.
Issues I Encountered Going Back To The Gym
When I visited my brother in Brooklyn and went to the gym for the first time in years, I realized I was kind of lost when it came to certain workouts. A lot of that had to do with the fact that I didn’t know the gym very well. So, I wasn’t sure where all the equipment I needed was at.
The same may happen to you, but that’ll change once you get a feel for the gym you go to. I’ll give you a few examples of some of these issues I had to brainstorm quick fixes for.
- HOW I ADJUSTED MY WEIGHTED DIPS
My Monday workout starts with weighted dips. Well, I didn’t have a weighted belt with me, and I didn’t see any at the gym, so I had to improvise. The weighted belt is a great tool for me to wrap around my waist and attach a weighted plate to it for added resistance.
Since I didn’t have this, I grabbed a dumbbell and secured it between my feet. It was tricky cause it kept feeling like the dumbbell was gonna slip, but luckily I was able to keep it in place during my dip workout.
Calf raises were another one I encountered, and so were sternum pull ups, but I found quick fixes for both of these.
- HOW I ADJUSTED MY CALF RAISES
I’ve been doing calf raises on my stairs at home. I’ve been increasing the weight week by week, by wearing a weighted vest, and added weight from my adjustable dumbbells. However, at the gym, I didn’t have access to either of these.
This one, I’ll admit, was a convenient quick fix. I found a calf raise machine that I was able to easily adjust the weight on. So it actually simplified my usual process. However, the one issue I did have was that there was another guy using the machine. I just politely asked if I could jump in between his sets, and he was cool with it.
- HOW I ADJUSTED MY STERNUM PULL UPS
I’ve been doing sternum pull ups at home wearing a weighted dip belt. Since I didn’t have my weighted belt with me, I added some weight to my back pack, and found a pull up bar at the gym to do these.
Gym Workouts In Summary
I hope you have a better idea now on how to workout at the gym. In all honestly, this article was a bit tougher for me to write out, simply because I came to realize that, although I follow a powerful resistance training routine at home, it’s been a long while since I’ve gone to the gym. That is, until this past week.
There is one thing I want to stress, which actually gave me a bit of an ego boost at the gym. In all the previous years of me going to the gym, no one has ever seemed to take notice of the exercises I was doing.
This most recent visit, after years of not going, was the first time I ever noticed several people look my way curiously throughout my workout. Were they trying to figure out what kind of routine I was following? Is it cause I’m in way better shape now than I used to be? Do I look like an alien?
I suppose it could be any of these things, but my guess is that I had a confidence and a clear workout plan that I was following. I wasn’t messing around. I went to the gym to get in, have a badass workout, and then leave.
I used to sit around and get lazy. I’d think about what the next workout would be that I was going to do. Should I work my legs next or my arms? Then I’d sit and be lazy again. In the past, I never had a plan. I just sort of knew what I was going to do or I’d wing it.
This time, I went into the gym on a mission, and that is the power of following a proven workout routine. If you’re looking to gain lean muscle mass while burning off excess fat, I can’t think of a better program than this one here. It’s specifically for anyone ready to put in the work to get serious results.
Here’s an excusive gym routine that will work wonders for you, especially if you consider yourself to be skinny, and you’re looking to gain muscle mass.
You can take a physique quiz right here to determine what would be an appropriate workout for your body type.
If you have any questions or comments regarding any of the information laid out in this article, please let me know in the comments below and I’ll be more than happy to get back to you as soon as possible.
I’d love to hear any tips or tricks you use as well, as I’m sure I could learn quite a bit from others who go to the gym regularly. I’ve just started getting into the swing of being back, and I like it a lot actually. I’m not sure if or when I’ll make a full transition back, because I do love my home workouts too! But we’ll see. I kind of want to bring an entire gym back to my house, but not sure how realistic that is. Thanks so much for reading!