Open Letter to New Gym Members

Open Letter to New Gym Members

Dear New Gym Members,

I get it.

Having been a gym member for roughly 5 1/2 years, I have seen the spurts during New Years. After all, I don't even need to use THE GOOGLE to tell me that weight loss is the number one resolution in the United States.

And lately, I am ashamed to admit I have been a tad bit snarky about you.

I have laughed with the gym staff about the "New Years Rush," and I have begun counting down the days until 90% of you are gone and I can get on the elliptical again without waiting in line.

I have smirked at your shiny brand-spanking-new blinding white sneakers and new workout gear.

Tonight, I cursed all of you who made me park at a restaurant and walk over to the gym, because it is SO BUSY there was not one parking space.

But tonight, I also saw one of you in particular. She reminded me of myself, six years ago.

When I first stepped foot into the gym.


The look of of a caged animal. Or a deer caught in headlights.

Unsure of where to go, how to work the machines.

Overwhelmed by the music, weights being dropped, the whirring of the machines. 

Not making eye contact with anyone.

Embarrassed, perhaps.

I saw her get on the treadmill. And then the bike. And then the elliptical. And then the weights.

Because they were all too hard.

That was me.

The first time I got on an elliptical I couldn't even manage FIVE MINUTES. Tonight? I did 45 minutes. Followed by weights and the treadmill. What a difference.

So New Years folks? Honestly, I hope you stick around. I can get used to waiting for a machine. I can walk as far as I need to when there isn't any parking. Because, I am proud of every single one of you.  Showing up is more than half the battle.

Tonight, I was reminded where I came from.

When I walked into the gym for the first time, scared. Knowing I needed to change, but not sure how. Feeling judged (but trust me, it was only me judging myself).

Tonight I was reminded that we all have to start somewhere. And it might as well be New Years. I have my own resolutions, so why should I be snarky about someone else's?

I promise it gets easier.

Just keep coming back.

And soon enough you'll become a regular. The atmosphere will become comforting. People will get to know you. It will become a place for you to escape and focus on you.

And then together we can scoff at the New Years rush of 2013.

Keep on Keepin' On,


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