Find The Gym For Your Goals (Part2)

find a gym diffrent type

I read a Nerd Fitness article  and I learned good stuff.

If you didn’t read the part 1, click here 

Type de gyms

different type gym

You noticed there are several categories of gyms. That’s why you have to take your time to think about a gym that fits your needs.

Fitness center franchise

In the best known franchises, you will have cheap membership. It’s cheap but you have few amenities, some type of trainings are forbidden, free weight section is limited and often the staff has no experience.

Health clubs/Sport clubs/YMCA

Clubs look like franchises but they have a better service. There is more amenities, towel service, child care, pool, tennis court. Membership can reach $100, some type of training can be prohibited and free weight’s section limited.

Note : Franchises and clubs can be convenient if you travel a lot because with their membership, you can train in different cities.

Locally owned gyms

These gyms have a better equipement, a free weight’s section bigger and a better quality staff than franchises and health clubs. Membership is around $25-50 and it’s real that amenites are less good than health clubs.

Weightlifting club/barbell club/crossfit

It’s a room with bumper plates, dumbbells, barbells and pullup bar. With the membership, you have a coach and classes, that’s why it’s expensive. These gyms are open at certain hours during the day. These gyms have their own workout program, you can’t do your own workout program.

College/university gyms

it’s cheap and you need to paid upfront in full.

You can have a discount « alumini » memberships if you go to the college or university that you attended. If you don’t live near of you old college/university, some gyms offer memberships to family members of alumini or staff, local « senior » memberships or event just local resident memberships. What is great with this type of gym is you can have acces to their full facilty (pool, racquet courts, classes, etc).

Test drive the gym

test drive

The next step is to look for gyms in your city now that you know differtent types of gyms.

Do a test in gyms to see if the equipement meets your needs. Some gyms offer pass for 1-2 weeks. During the test phase, go train the same days that you plan to train after signing the contract.

Imagine that you find the perfect gym, you sign the contract and eveydays you train, it’s war. The gym is full of people and you can’t use equipement. This is a situation to avoid.

Here is what is important to see during the test phase :

  • Is there enough equipment for everyone or you have to fight to have a bench ?

  • Does the equipment work well ?

  • What is the gym’s atmosphere ?

  • Is it clean ?

  • If you go befoire school/work, is there enough shower available or you have to wait ?

You can read gym’s reviews on internet by searching with Google or DuckDuckGo. Attention, on internet people prefer to complain than to do compliments so be careful. For me the best thing to do is talk to gym members to know what is positive and negative.

Contracts

contract

A lot of people don’t want to have a membership gym because one of their friend had a bad experience to stop a gym’s membership. This for this reason it’s important to take your time to read the contract and understand clauses.

Here things to look at in a contract :

  • A membership termination clause because for exemple, you move or you lose you job. This is rare but sometimes you can stop a membership if you live near the gym. Usually there is a fee named «  early termination fee » (that’s what I have).

  • The possibility when you’re on vacation ou you have to work for several weeks in another city to freeze your membership.

  • If the gym goes bankrupt, what happens to members ?

  • Membership renewal is automatic ?

You know salespersons work with commission so if a sales person make you a promise, make sure that this promise is in writing. Taking the contract at home is the thing I advise you to read it quietly and understand clauses.

If you feel that the salesperson put pression on you or that you don’t feel comfortable for another reason, leave the gym.

Note : There are states that has specific laws. For exemple, you can cancel the contract only 2 days after signed it. It would be a shame if you signed this type of contract without being aware of this clause. This is why it’s important to take the contract at home to read it quietly.

Here different membership’s fees :

  • Activation fee

    You pay these fees when you’re a new member. You pay these fees once.

  • Monthly cost

    it’s a fee you pay every month

  • Maintenance fee

You pay these fees per year. Attention, some gyms have a special clause that says : « We don’t have this kind of fee now but later, it’s possible to add these fees without telling you ». Be sure to know this clause if it is in your contract.

When I enrolled in my gym, there was an offer for people who applied for registration on internet. Look at gym’s website to know offers but also ask always to salesperson if there are discounts.

In gyms, there is often a membership’s range of price. You need to negotiate, don’t hesitate. Don’t forget that the more you take the more expensive membership, the more the salesperson will have a larger commission. If the salesperson tell you : « No », it doesn’t matter, you tried to get the best price.

By negotiating, somethimes you can register in a gym for the first time without paying the activation fees. To do it, you need to talk to the person who has permission to do this. Sometimes they can call you 1-2 days after to offer you an exceptional offer.

You can also have a nice offer by paying an annual membership up front. Look at the price difference.

Also you can have offers with you health insurance. It’s always with a limited number of gym but look if you have this option.

Stay focus

stay focus

The difference between a workout at home and a workout in a gym is that in a workout in a gym, you can really make your potential evolve to the maximum.

For exemple, if you do a barbell’s workout, you will have always heavy weight plates to go to the next level. It’s the same thing for dumbbells. You need heavier, it’s here. No need to worry about buying new.

Of course, there are negative pointst to enroll a gym. You have to move there (bike, bus, car, etc), you to wait if you go during busy hours, the cost and do your workout around unkown people.

I repeat, you can train at home to be healthy or gain strength with a bodyweight workout program. You can buy a set of dumbbell, barbell, kettelbell or a sandbag. You can do sprints or walk (like my father) outside with any weather and it’s free.

For me the gym, it’s an important moment of my day. It’s the moment where I’m focus on myself and the society’s pressure no longer exists.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

Contractions ? Better muscles ?

muscle contraction

What is your goal at the gym, lift the heaviest weight possible or have volume and be dry ?

For me it’s to have volume, be dry and have power, otherwise I would do Powerlifting. To achieve this, I focus to get the highest quality of muscle contraction on each rep.

For example for the curl, I tell to myself that I contract my biceps to move my arm rather than I move my arm to move the weight, it changes the whole mindset. Once a coach has helped me and during reps, he tapped me the muscle that I had worked to stay focused on it. I tell you, congestion is not the same you’ll be surprised.

concentric eccentric contraction

This is something that is learned as the technique. At first, the ideal is that you start with lightweight to feel your muscles during movements. Then you increase the weight in each series. When you can’t feel your muscles working, it means the weight is too heavy, it’s necessary to decrease a little so that you can feel your muscles work again.

Biomechanics experts often speak of the benefits of leverage with your muscle and you can do it, lift heavy with minimum effort but we want the opposite. For example your shoulders, more you bent your elbows on lateral raise or fly and more it’s easier to raise the weight. But when you stretch your elbows just to be slightly bent, chest and middle delts are forced to work harder and your muscles will grow faster.

level contraction

You surely already know, the more you do the exercise slowly, the harder it is. Slow down the speed improves the concentric and eccentric effect, which allows to have optimal contraction. I don’t mean you should do all your exercises in “slow motion” but do some sets like this can help you to have better results.

A technique used by bodybuilders is to keep your muscles contracted for 2 seconds at the end of each rep. I warn you, if it’s something new for you, may be you can’t be able to do your usual number of reps, you’ll really really feel your muscle there.

keep contraction muscle

I’m never going to say to abandon barbells and dumbbell for cables equipment but this is an excellent complement. The constant tension on your muscles with cables boost the quality of each contraction.

Try and tell me what it did to you. I’m sure you’ll feel your muscles differently and your congestion will be demonic.

-Steph

Contractions ? Meilleurs muscles ?

muscle contraction

Quelle est ton but à tes entraînements, soulevé le plus lourd possible ou avoir du volume et être sec ?

Pour moi, c’est d’avoir du volume, être sec et avoir de la puissance, sinon je ferais du Powerlifting. Pour atteindre cet objectif, je me concentre pour avoir la plus haute qualité de contraction musculaire à chaque rep.

Par exemple pour le curl, je me dis que je contracte mon biceps pour bouger mon bras plutôt que de me dire que je bouge mon bras pour déplacer le poids, ça change tout l’état d’esprit. Une fois, un coach m’a aidé pendant un entraînement et durant les reps, il me tapotait le muscle que je devais travaillé pour que je reste concentré dessus. Je te le dis, la congestion n’est pas la même tu vas être surpris.

concentric eccentric contraction

C’est un truc qui s’apprend comme la technique. Au début, l’idéal est que tu commence avec des poids léger pour sentir ton muscle pendant le mouvement. Ensuite, tu augmentes le poids à chaque série. Au moment où tu ne peux plus sentir tes muscle travaillé, ça veut dire le poids est trop lourd, il faut le diminuer un peu pour que tu puisse re-sentir tes muscles travaillé.

Les experts en Biomécanique parle souvent des avantages de l’effet de levier et avec tes muscle tu peux le faire, soulevé lourd avec le minimum d’effort mais nous voulons le contraire. Par exemple pour tes épaules, plus tu plies tes coudes sur un levé latéral ou le fly et plus c’est facile de soulevé les poids. Mais quand tu tends tes coudes juste pour être légèrement plié, les pectoraux et les deltoïdes moyens sont obligé de travaillé plus fort et tes muscles vont développer plus rapidement.

level contraction

Tu le sais sûrement déjà, plus tu fais l’exercice lentement, plus il est difficile. Ralentir la vitesse améliore l’effet concentrique et excentrique, ce qui permet d’avoir une contraction optimale. Je ne veut pas dire que tu devrais faire tout tes exercices en « mode ralenti » mais faire quelques séries comme ça peut t’aider à avoir de meilleurs résultats.

Une technique utilisé par les bodybuilders est de garder tes muscles contractés pendant 2 secondes à la fin de chaque reps. Je te préviens, si c’est quelque chose de nouveau pour toi, tu ne seras peut-être pas en mesure de faire ton nombre de reps habituelle, tu vas sentir tes muscle là.

keep contraction muscle

Je ne vais jamais de dire d’abandonner les barres à poids et les haltères pour les câbles mais c’est un excellent complément. La tension constante que tes muscles ont avec les câbles boost la qualité de chaque contraction.

Essaye et dis-moi ce que ça t’as fait. Je suis sûr que tu vas sentir tes muscle différemment et que ta congestion sera démonique.

-Steph