Friday, August 3, 2012

YMCA Orientation

As I wrote previously, I was a member of our YMCA before they renovated last year. They reopened after extensive renovations in November of last year. I don't remember when I was a member, but it was either early last year or the year before. Anyway, in the previous YMCA, I was totally petrified of the fitness center. It was small and always completely jammed full of super-skinny, health-nut-looking men and women. It scared me...

During my tour of the new facility last week, our guide took us though the fitness center. It was a lot roomier with more machines. They clientele of the center had also changed. There weren't only young, skinny, healthy people, but older people too... and younger people of all shapes and sizes. This helped ease my petrification, but I was still really intimidated.

Last night Jen and I had our orientation. This is where we got paired up with an orientation staff member who showed us around the fitness center. Our guide's name was Andy. He met us at the front counter and took us into the fitness center. First he showed us how to use the lockers. Then we went to treadmills. The Y has really nice equipment. We walked at like 2.0 while he showed us how to work the equipment. Then we went to recumbent bikes. Their recumbent bikes are amazing too. After that he showed us regular ellipticals which were nice too... then the cross trainer ellipticals (with the arms built in). After that he showed us what is called "the circuit" which is a bit like a Curves circuit. There are approximately 10 machines in the circuit that work all of the muscles in your body... He showed us how to properly use each machine.

Then he gave us free advice. Having orientation is free. Having a training session is not. He advised that, to obtain optimal results, we should each do cardio for at least 20-30 minutes 5-6 days a week and strength training for three days a week. He suggested 12-15 repetitions on the machines and two rounds of the circuits.

So, I think my schedule will look like this:

30 minutes elliptical trainer, strength training circuit (12-15 reps, 2 rounds)
60 minutes elliptical trainer
30 minutes elliptical trainer, strength training circuit (12-15 reps, 2 rounds)
60 minutes elliptical trainer
30 minutes elliptical trainer, strength training circuit (12-15 reps, 2 rounds)
45 minutes beginner cycling (spinning) class

If I need a rest day, other than Sunday, I'll take it, but I'm liking this plan right now. If I get into any classes, I'll take those instead of whatever planned each day, but since the spinning class is all that I wanted to do, really, and it's on Saturdays, I don't see a problem sticking with this plan.

Andy also said that a routine like this can help for long-term. The resistance on the strength training machines goes up so you can workout harder and do it for a really long time. He said he could see this plan working for 6 months or so. At that point, we could schedule a new orientation and learn the tougher machines.

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