I never went to a gym and I really need some advice

  • Nitro

    Posts: 22

    Sep 30, 2014 11:35 PM GMT
    Hi guys, I am 20 years old and 6.2 Foot (190 cm) and 154 pounds (70 kg), so you could consider me skinny, but I actually gained about 11 pounds (5kg) in the last year or so, so that’s kind of a win for me. The thing is that those are not muscle mass, I just managed to gain weight eating (which is really really hard for me). It kind of worries me that I will end up getting fat (all my family members are a bit overweight and my father was kind of skinny when he was young too).

    So I am really considering to go to the gym, take proteins, creatine and whatever it takes at least to get a jump start to feel motivated to continue. I started running half a year ago and even little things that show me results such as Nike+ managed to help me enormously to see how my stamina increased each single day. However I reduced my running to around once or twice a week because I started loosing weight running on a daily basis. (even though my appetite increased dramatically).

    I only went once to my dad’s university gym and a trainer there helped me exercise a lot but I never came back because I pussied out after a huge 3 day muscle fever. Now I kind of regret it, the costs of a personal trainer at a decent gym here is pretty high for my student budget (20 sessions for almost 400$).

    I need tips!
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    Oct 01, 2014 12:17 AM GMT
    Can't you get student pricing on training through your school, and/or suck it up and go back to the trainer you ditched? icon_razz.gif

    I would think that budgeting for gym time would be more cost-effective than supplements (on a budget you may get sufficient results from eggs, milk, and cottage cheese or yogurt) and gadgets, especially since the intended benefit of the protein is supposed to be for strength training, not so much for cardio. Besides, bulking in general is generally achieved through resistance training; cardio is more for losing fat (in addition to the endurance gains and other positive effects) than gaining muscle mass.

    Hopefully someone more knowledgeable than myself can tell you what parts of this I got wrong, but I do think it is safe to say that to bulk up you want to get back on the strength training; maybe ask to start a bit easier than your first time, and ask for homework so you can stretch your budget?
  • Nitro

    Posts: 22

    Oct 01, 2014 1:33 AM GMT
    yetanotherphil saidCan't you get student pricing on training through your school, and/or suck it up and go back to the trainer you ditched? icon_razz.gif

    Sadly that trainer/university is in my hometown, so that isn't an option icon_sad.gif. Most student discounts apply only to gym memberships, not to personal trainers. I don't know why personal trainers are seen like a luxury thing over here, in a smaller town I lived the last years they were very rare and no gym offered them. I kinda held out to make this move to a bigger city for college to do this.

    yetanotherphil said
    I would think that budgeting for gym time would be more cost-effective than supplements (on a budget you may get sufficient results from eggs, milk, and cottage cheese or yogurt) and gadgets, especially since the intended benefit of the protein is supposed to be for strength training, not so much for cardio.

    I didn't know protein stuff was so expensive, I will have to think about my options, are you talking about fresh shakes with those things or just a diet containing them?

    yetanotherphil said
    Besides, bulking in general is generally achieved through resistance training; cardio is more for losing fat (in addition to the endurance gains and other positive effects) than gaining muscle mass.

    I know, I only did it to make some kind of sport though.
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    Oct 01, 2014 2:00 AM GMT
    Nitro said
    Sadly that trainer/university is in my hometown, so that isn't an option icon_sad.gif. Most student discounts apply only to gym memberships, not to personal trainers. I don't know why personal trainers are seen like a luxury thing over here, in a smaller town I lived the last years they were very rare and no gym offered them. I kinda held out to make this move to a bigger city for college to do this.


    Too bad. At KU they had student trainers, which was perfect since both the sellers and buyers were always broke. :S


    I didn't know protein stuff was so expensive, I will have to think about my options, are you talking about fresh shakes with those things or just a diet containing them?


    I checked, and you're right; the difference is not what I thought it was. Still, whey protein is a supplement (not a substitute for meat, eggs, and yogurt), and only the cheapest is competitive with eggs for a student's budget, and creatine (I am fairly sure) is a waste if you're not lifting.

    The only other thing I can think of, then, is body weight. Sounds like you're fit, and with a light frame you might have an easy time getting started; pull ups, push ups, dips, etc. are much cheaper than a gym and trainer (and I've heard it said that they make for better workouts than machines or even free weights) if you can find a good place to do them.

    Sorry I don't have much else to offer. Be patient, though, and keep checking back; most guys here in this corner of the forums are far more knowledgeable than me.
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    Oct 01, 2014 2:30 AM GMT
    Check out the RJ 12 week fitness routines and preview the videos before you go a few times so you can see the correct technique. Ask one of the employees to show you how to use the machines safely but just ask about one it two machines each time. Ask a female if you're intimidated by asking a guy.

    Don't make the same mistake I did when I was your age. I was not only short but ultra skinny and basically chickened out of going to the gym. I can not tell you how much I wanna smack myself upside the head for being so dumb!

    Push-ups were a good way to ease into it for me. It boosted my self-confidence when I finally returned to the gym about 25 years later.
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    Oct 01, 2014 6:25 PM GMT
    There are personal trainers in every gym. I think you should talk to one. They can show you how to use the machines, how often and which ones.. If it's gonna be your first time you'll feel lost surrounded with all those.
    In my gym when you buy your first pass a trainer shows you around and introduces you to a couple guys who are always there. They are very helpful.
    Good luck buddy!
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    Oct 01, 2014 9:04 PM GMT
    Don't worry about supplements when you're just starting out. Concentrate on learning how to do exercises properly and eat good, healthy food- lean proteins, fresh fruits & veggies, low glycemic index carbs(google it)- lots of it. Avoid junk foods, sugar, and alcohol(moderation!).

    If you are consistent with your diet and exercise program you should start noticing results fairly quickly. But bear in mind that some of us are never going to be huge- it's just not in our genetic make-up.

    There is lots of info and video online-use it!

    All of us started somewhere. You're at a perfect age to benefit the most from training. It is doable as you get older but you have to work harder at it, so why wait?

    Sometimes the hardest part is getting up and going to the gym when you don't really feel like it. Go anyways. You'll feel better after.

    Good luck.
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    Oct 01, 2014 10:45 PM GMT
    Try looking up a basic plan on http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/find-a-plan.html they often come with videos and day to day guides.

    Once at a gym don't be afraid to ask the staff if you're not sure how to use certain machine or if you're not sure whether you're doing an exercise properly or not. They should help you with basics to avoid injuries.

    One extra advice: if you're short on time opt for a plan with a full body workouts. This way if you skip a day you're still exercising your whole body.
  • Noeton

    Posts: 208

    Oct 02, 2014 12:05 AM GMT
    I'd start by learning all the major muscle groups and choose a machine that works each one. Youtube has instructional videos on all machines and every conceivable exercise in the gym. It can be a lot to take in all at once, so I'd work on some big, basic compound exercises first. Sounds like you should also probably not run a lot at least until you see some muscle growth. That's more or less how I began, and I also worked with a trainer for leg exercises, but not one as expensive as that. Good luck!