Working out and going to a gym can be pretty scary if you are new to it. There are so many machines that look like torture chambers, people doing exercise classes that require more coordination than most humans hold and of the course the big, tan, buff dudes that only seem to hang around the weights. That is more than enough reasons to avoid the gym!

I have never been much of a gym fan. I spent most of my younger years and college dancing and specifically, ballroom dancing. Talk about a dang workout! I stayed in shape from that alone. But after college when I got into the real world, I realized that I couldn't keep my college eating habits of Cup-O-Noodle and Panda Express and NOT do some form of activity. Let me tell you, the pounds just all of a sudden show up and then one day, no joke, your favorite jeans don't fit! After about four years post college I realized I was not happy with my weight and I wanted to do something about it.

I tried Barre, which was awesome but was not the best option for shedding pounds. I felt that was a better workout for once you've lost a good amount of weight and you want to tone up and lean down. I then got onto a company called BeachBody and did a series called 21 Day Fix. Talk about life changing. I lost about 15 pounds in just a few short months. It consisted of an eating plan and 30 minutes of exercise a day. The eating plan was actually REAL food that you have to go buy at the store and make yourself. No weird power bars and no processed prepared foods. And the workouts were on a DVD and you did a different one each day. Those kicked by booty and obviously in a great way! No one can tell me they don't have 30 minutes for workout in your own living room.

That however is where it stopped. When we moved here to Billings we picked a place where the living room, or any room for that matter, doesn't have the room for working out. Crap. And that's how I came to the idea that I need to join a gym. I know... A scary gym. I did my research all over town and called everyone asking for free trails, rates and all that good stuff. Ultimately, I knew I wouldn't be successful in a gym if I didn't get involved in the workout classes offered. That, my friends, is a great place to start in a gym. You have a group of people with similar goals, a coach right in the front cheering you on, body pumping music and of course after you finish you are sweaty but feel like a bad ass for doing 700 squats.

I have been going to Granite Fitness for about three weeks now and I have stuck to it. I found the right classes for me to fit my needs, goals and schedule. I made sure to introduce myself to all the instructors so they knew my name and could encourage me along in my journey. I also made an appointment with a personal trainer. At most gyms you can get one of these sessions complimentary when you join and the trainer will take time to show you the whole gym, explain every machine and talk to you about what your goals are so they can help you make a plan to achieve and maintain those.

So, friends. If gyms scare you and you are tired of eating Cheetos and want to look like a goddess or Olympic athlete, be empowered. It's all about being informed. The more you know, the less scary these workout facilities become and usually in the end you make good friends who become your support system and accountability partners to help you look and feel your very best!