Circuit Style Gyms
Think F45, Orange Theory or any gym that specialises in outdoor training or bootcamps, whereby there is a small amount of equipment designed to fit a wide range of experience levels, strength levels and fitness levels. These sorts of facilities are often far more social in nature and again targeted more towards generalised fitness goals such as fat loss and general improvements in overall fitness. These facilities are also extremely convenient for those that are time-poor or have no interest in the specifics of exercise, but rather the benefits of them. Workouts of 45 minutes to an hour with interval training at their core will do the job in an efficient way that is easy to fit into a busy daily routine.
Now, if you know exactly what sort of training you love, then this decision is probably pretty easy. Go check out your local commercial, CrossFit, powerlifting, Oly lifting, F45 facility and see if you like the space, vibe, staff and get stuck in.
However, if this doesn’t narrow it down, here’s a quick little guide on what facility might work best based on the goals you’re trying to achieve.
Do you want to build muscle?
To put it bluntly, circuit-style gyms & CrossFit boxes simply aren’t going to offer the best opportunity to build muscle. If you want to improve your body composition, fill out your shirts or build some curves, then you’re going to need access to weights – ideally some resistance machines in addition to some dumbbells and barbells, too.
Any commercial-style gym or somewhere that has a sound selection of weight machines will be your best bet here. You may even find that there are some equally well-stocked powerlifting gyms too, that would help you with building both strength and muscle. You might even find a love for lifting heavy things and a new community to boot. Don’t like the cookie-cutter conformity of a chain gym? No problem: Sydney has a bunch of excellent independent gyms (like the gym I run, Paragon Strength and Performance in Artarmon).
Are you looking to lose weight?
If you burn more calories than you consume, you’ll end up losing weight. With this in mind and a sound understanding of nutrition, you could really turn to any of the facilities mentioned above. However, if you’re wanting to prioritise weight loss and have some fun along the way, particularly if you’re time-poor, a circuit-style gym is probably your best bet. Turn up, get put through your paces & get on with your life. Easy.
Want your fitness to be more social?
Especially if you have a specific interest in a certain sport, then this is a simple decision. Go after it and enjoy yourself. This is particularly true of anybody who perhaps has a reasonable history of playing in team sports, but no longer has the time to dedicate to them. If you love the challenge of bettering yourself and don’t have any attachment to the outcome of what you’re doing in terms of weight loss or weight gain, then this is essentially combining the idea of having a hobby and exercising regularly – arguably one of the healthiest things you could do with your time.