Summer is officially here and I've decided that it's time to change a few of my unhealthy habits. That includes my lack of physical exercise. When I was a child, I  spent a bit of time playing sports, but it was never anything major. I played soccer and softball. I was even a cheerleader for a few years. Since beginning school here in Atlanta, I fell out of the habit of working out. I tried my best to eat healthy, but I knew that I needed to get into the gym and put in a bit more effort if I wanted to stay ahead of the curve. In other news, I was also unhappy with my physical appearance. 

I started small; I would exercise in the gym on campus with a friend, but I lacked motivation. This lasted about two weeks until I decided that I was over that. Some time passed and while out with a friend, I was stopped by an LA Fitness employee who suggested that I sign up for a two week pass at their nearby location. I said sure, but I put the idea away for a while. This was pretty hard when that same LA Fitness employee would call me about twice a week asking if I planned on coming. 

A few weeks had passed and I decided to bring a friend with me to LA Fitness to see what they had to offer. A month and a half later, I feel like I made the right choice to get in the gym. Although I'm extremely intimidated in the free weights area, and I become exhausted after 25 jumping jacks, I still hit the gym bright and early every morning.

A few tips I would like to add for the gym newbies would be: 

1. Don't allow the gym to intimidate you.

Sure there are more experienced individuals who've been in the gym way longer than you. You have to start somewhere. 

2. Bring a friend.

A countability partner has been so helpful. Not only do you have someone to keep you on track with your workouts, you also have someone to workout with and keep you going when you're feeling exhausted. 

3. Results will not happen overnight.

You have to keep pushing yourself in order to see results. They might not happen for a few weeks, but they will come. 

4. The gym isn't the only place you can get results.

If you aren't capable of going to a gym everyday, feel free to workout in your home or outside in a park. I spend a large amount of my gym time doing floor exercises. These keep my heart rate up a bit more that lifting weights.

5. Eating healthy is a large part of the entire gym experience.

Clean eating seems impossible in the beginning, but it will all become a habit after a while.

The gym won't be a foreign language for some of you pretty soon! I believe in you and you should believe in yourself, too. Stay motivated and hit the gym today.