Due to Covid-19, we are not scheduling in person seminars. Rather, please watch our online seminar. Nutrition classes will be held via Zoom meeting. Please call Leslie Albers at 901-881-0602 for details about class or any other questions. We ARE currently scheduling patients for visits and surgeries and you can easily start the program by watching our online seminar.

Getting the Most for Your Health Club Dollar

March 16, 2016

New gymAfter weight loss surgery getting into a fitness routine is something to look forward to but it can also be intimidating. Remember why you are there…for your health and well-being and not to compete, or wear the right workout attire.  It is all for you.

If you cannot or do not want to belong to a health club, any increase in movement after surgery is helpful. Park further away when shopping, take the stairs, do yard work and sometimes the best thing to do is go take a 30 minute walk.  If the weather is bad, you can go to a mall or big store.

When you get ready to hit the gym, here are some tips on finding the best gym for you on your dollar.

Joining a fitness facility is costly—from a few hundred dollars to more than $1,000 per year. To make sure your money is well spent, manage your membership the same way you would any other major investment—by keeping your eye on your goals. If you know what you want to get out of your club, in terms of health, fitness, and lifestyle, you’re more likely to use it in ways that will keep you motivated and satisfied.

Keep your goals in mind and shop around if you’re still deciding which facility to join. Health clubs are not all alike. Some clubs emphasize strength training. Others may offer a better choice of aerobics classes or weight-management programs, or may be home to local competitors in running or other sports.

Find the right match

It’s also important to find a club that makes you feel comfortable. Instead of just taking a tour of a club you’re considering, ask for a guest pass so you can work out at the club under different conditions.

Factors to consider

There are a number of things to think about to help you make your choice:

  • Professionalism. The club should be clean and well-maintained. Staff members should have appropriate educational backgrounds and be certified by a nationally recognized association. They should be able to help you in all aspects of fitness. This includes strength, cardiovascular, and flexibility, as well as your specific area of interest.
  • Atmosphere. Gyms tend to have fewer frills, while health clubs offer more luxuries like upscale changing rooms.
  • Convenience. If you have to drive an hour to get to your club, you’ll soon get tired of the hassle. Look for a facility that’s close to home or work, or halfway in-between.
  • Services. If massages, steam rooms, and an on-site nutritionist are important to you, be sure they’re important to your club, too. If you travel, does your club have shared memberships with clubs in other cities?

Read the fine print

Most clubs require you to sign a contract to become a member. Read it carefully before signing it and, if possible, compare it with the contracts of other clubs in your area. These are factors the International Health, Racquet, and Sportsclub Association advises you to find out about:

  • Length of your commitment. Is it month to month, or are you required to join for a specific period?
  • Termination options. Can you cancel your membership before the end of the contract? Under what conditions?

Enjoy the payoff

After you’ve spent your money on a membership, here are ways to get the best value for your health-club dollar:

  • Take stock of everything your club has to offer. Classes? Competitions? Variety will keep you interested and motivated.
  • Read the bulletin board. Clubs are often centers for fitness activities in their communities. Many club bulletin boards also offer tips on nutrition and fitness, and deals on equipment.
  • Use the trainer. A trainer can make sure your fitness program is right for you.
  • Be suspicious of nutritional supplements and other products offered by the club. Compare prices to similar items in retail stores.

 

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