top of page
  • Writer's pictureVipul Vaibhav

What to do on your first day at the gym?

What to do on your first day at the gym

So, you've finally made the decision to go to the gym after giving it a lot of thought. Maybe you're not satisfied with how you currently look, or perhaps some teasing from friends has motivated you to prove them wrong. You've chosen a gym, subscribed to it, and now you're all set to hit the gym.

On your first day, you might be feeling uncertain about what to do. Worries about being judged by others or the fear of something going wrong during your workout might be on your mind. But don't worry, this guide is here to help you navigate through your first gym day. Let's get started without any further delay.

Content -

1. No need to stress

First and foremost, don't stress about your first day at the gym. Everyone has their first day, and people at the gym understand that because they've all been beginners too. On the bright side, fellow gym-goers are often willing to help if they see you struggling. So, on your first day, be prepared, be confident, and be kind to yourself.

2. Warm-up with stretches and cardio

Since it's your first time at the gym and you'll be dealing with weights, it's crucial to properly stretch your muscles to avoid injuries. Start with a 10-minute session on the treadmill with a speed set between 4 and 6 for a good warm-up. A proper warm-up readies your body for action, gradually increases your heart rate, and raises your body temperature as the cardiovascular system kicks in. Consider incorporating a universal warm-up routine, including slow neck tilts, rotations, shoulder rotations, leg raises, and more. This will leave you feeling flexible and ready for your workout. Full list is given below along with a simple pictorial guide. 

Warmup Exercises Before Workout

Exercises in order:  

slow forward and back neck tilts  

slow side-to-side neck tilts  

slow neck rotations  

shoulder rotations  

slow march jacks  

slow side jacks  

alternating chest expansions  

chest expansions  

raised arms circles  

hip rotations  

backward leg raises 

side leg raises

3. Utilize Machines

For beginners, machine exercises are excellent. They help train your muscles while minimizing the risk of injuries by guiding your movements in the correct form. Initially, when we start gym training, our form may not be accurate, especially with dumbbells and barbells, which can lead to injuries. Experiencing injuries on your first day is something we want to avoid. For the initial weeks, stick to machine exercises, splitting them into upper and lower body workouts on alternate days. Meanwhile, watch YouTube guide videos to learn the correct form for exercises with dumbbells and barbells. Take a couple of weeks before transitioning to free weights. You'll find various machines at your gym, and by focusing on machine exercises, you can shed a few kilos and build some muscles, provided your diet is in check.

Look for the following machines at your gym:

Machine Exercises in Gym

Upper Body:

- Lat pulldown

- Chest Fly/Rear Deltoid reverse fly

- Chest press

- Cable Machine (also called pulley machine)

Lower Body:

- Seated Leg Extension

- Seated Hamstring Curl

- Leg press machine

These machines usually have instructions printed on them, making it easy for you to start. If you need assistance, feel confident about asking a trainer or a fellow gym member for help. Remember, it's completely okay, and no one will judge you. Take your time and focus on improving your form in the first few weeks rather than rushing into heavier weights. You'll thank yourself six months down the line for prioritizing proper form over heavy lifting.

4. Don’t Overdo on the first day

Overdoing the gym on the first day can have detrimental effects on both physical and mental well-being. Pushing the body excessively increases the risk of injuries, ranging from strains and sprains to more severe issues like muscle tears. Rapidly escalating intensity can also lead to delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), causing discomfort that may discourage future workouts. Furthermore, excessive strain on the cardiovascular system may result in fatigue and dizziness. Psychologically, an overwhelming initial experience can create a negative association with exercise, reducing long-term adherence to a fitness routine. It's crucial to gradually acclimate the body to physical activity, allowing muscles, joints, and cardiovascular systems to adapt and strengthen over time. This approach promotes sustainable progress, reduces injury risk, and fosters a positive attitude towards fitness.

5. Let your body recover after the first day

Optimal recovery after the first day at the gym involves prioritizing rest, hydration, and nutrition. Adequate sleep is essential, as it allows the body to repair and regenerate tissues. Hydrate well to replenish fluids lost through sweating during the workout. Incorporate a balanced post-exercise meal rich in protein and carbohydrates to support muscle recovery and replenish glycogen stores. Gentle stretching or low-intensity activities like walking can alleviate muscle soreness and improve flexibility. Consider using foam rollers or massage to reduce muscle tension. Listen to your body and avoid overtraining; if feeling excessively fatigued or experiencing pain, allow additional rest days. Consistent recovery practices not only enhance physical recuperation but also contribute to sustained motivation and long-term fitness success.


In conclusion, your first day at the gym is an exciting step towards a healthier and fitter you. Remember, everyone starts as a beginner, so don't stress or feel intimidated. Take it slow, focus on warming up with stretches and cardio, and consider using machines to get comfortable with different exercises.

It's crucial to avoid overdoing it on the first day to prevent injuries and ensure a positive experience. Gradually increase the intensity as your body adapts, and don't forget to prioritize proper form over heavy lifting initially. Recovery is key, so get enough rest, stay hydrated, and nourish your body with a balanced diet.

Celebrate the small victories, be patient with yourself, and enjoy the journey to a healthier lifestyle. The gym is a place for personal growth, and with consistency, you'll see progress over time. Don't hesitate to ask for help or guidance, and most importantly, have fun on your fitness journey!

15 views0 comments


bottom of page