Eight Great Tips for Choosing the Right Gym

Drinking Water at Gym Workout

Joining a gym is a common first step toward losing weight. But success in shedding pounds and keeping them off depends largely upon your choosing the right workout facility. Here are eight great tips to help you do just that. 

  1. Staff: First impressions mean everything. Make sure the staff at the gym you're interested in joining are courteous, supportive and knowledgeable.
  2. Members: Before signing a contract, visit the gym a few times Take note of the other members and how you feel around them. If you're the timid type, a same-sex gym may be more comfortable for you than a coed facility. And working out in gyms where much of the membership is in the same general age group may provide a bit of inspiration and friendly competition.
  3. Location, location, location: It's the mantra that business owners swear by, and it's critical to your weight loss success, too. A top option is a facility located between your home and your school or workplace. If it's along your regular route, you're more likely to stop by regularly.
  4. Hours: Choose a gym that's open during the times you're most likely to visit. While some gyms remain open 24 hours, others are closed on the weekends, early mornings and late evenings. Make sure the hours fit your schedule, or you'll find yourself paying for something you can't access.
  5. Classes and training: Group classes and individual training may be included in your monthly membership fee, or you may have to pay extra. Double check so that there are no post-signing surprises. Also look over the schedule to assure that the classes you want to take are offered at the times you're most available.
  6. Equipment: Check to make sure that all equipment is in good working order and that there are enough of the most popular machines that you won't have to wait long to use them. Also ask about time limit policies, particularly if you aim to spend a lot of time on particular machines - an hour on the treadmill, for instance.
  7. Cleanliness: During your tour of a gym, watch to make sure that clean towels are always available for wiping down equipment and that staff politely enforce wipe-down policies. Also check the cleanliness of locker rooms, showers and restrooms.
  8. Fees: This is the primary deciding factor for most people. Know ahead of time how much your fees will be, when they're due, how they're payable (some gyms or packages may require a credit card or bank auto-debit) and whether there are any extra fees. For instance, use of features like massage chairs, saunas and certain workout machines may incur extra charges. Also ask about policies on cancellation penalties.

To help assure your efforts will pay off, enlist the help of a Metabolic Research Center weight loss specialist who will help develop a customized exercise, nutrition and lifestyle plan that will keep you on track. Call 800-501-8090 to find the MRC location nearest you. 


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