Control the routine

Controlling the period prior to the gym can be really beneficial.

This might be the 10-minute period leaving work to getting to the gym, first 45-minutes of the day, depending on what’s required.

Questions to consider when building the routine include:

Where will you get changed or ready (home/work/gym)?

Where will you park?

How much travel time do you need?

For some people, the stress of those first few sessions can cause smaller decisions to be more significant and sensitive.

These become choke-points where the training session can be abandoned, particularly if there is no one at the session to be accountable to seeing. 

Having a strategy in place to deal with them has the double benefit of minimising stress and also feeling more proactive because the ‘gym process’ starts when you begin getting ready. 

So instead of walking through the door of the gym being ‘the start’ it’s simply a part of the process that has already begun when you go changed at work.

Having a training program is a vital part of this process because it allows you to control what happens after you walk through the gym door.

You should know exactly what you are going to do and when.

I don’t mind if it’s walking on a treadmill for 20-minutes and then leaving - just have a plan and stick to it.

I have even written an eight-week program that starts on the treadmill and then branches out across the gym over its duration.

The sole intention is to get comfortable in one section of the gym before moving on to the next.

The weights, sets and reps don’t matter - they are there for a guide - the goal is simply to spend time in the gym.

The more time you spend in the gym, the more comfortable you will become.

Tom Fitzgerald