The Effect of January and When to Hit the Gym
The effect January, more specifically New Years, has on people is astounding. I looked at the stats for this blog while I was on hiatus and, while the number of visitors was steady, the moment January hit they shot up. Not through the roof or into outer space, that would be for those blogs that are super popular as opposed to mine which people seem to enjoy but doesn’t have the numbers to make up a small village. Unless that village/town was Perfection in Tremors. I probably get more tourist action than they do, even with their graboids.
(NOTE: FYI, Perfection had 14 people at the beginning of the first Tremors movie. It had significantly fewer by the end. They started a tourist thing in the 3rd movie but, although they didn’t specify, I think the population was still pretty low. I mean, who wants to live in an isolated part of the desert with graboids?? Come on!)
(NOTE 2: Although you would get some pretty good cardio and strength training from running away and climbing boulders/telephone poles/buildings/etc. Assuming you weren’t eaten right off the bat. And if your only chance of survival was running away, you’d probably get eaten pretty quickly. So, no, I wouldn’t want to live there.)
But January! Wow! What a month for people! The New Year starts and all anyone wants to do is get fit and lose weight.
It may look like I’m a happy passenger on this bandwagon but I stand by my initial statement that the date and my sudden change back to fitness are coincidence. There may have been some subconscious motivation going on that was connected to New Years, but on a conscious choice level it was coincidence. Sorry.
That’s not to say I’ve never jumped on the New Years fitness bandwagon. It was a usual thing for me every year up until about 4 years ago. There’s no shame in it. How else would gyms get their membership fees met? And I’m sure there are lots of people who stick with their resolution instead of giving it up when their motivation lags.
I saw the progression for 3 years in a row. It kind of sucked sometimes because it was impossible to get the cardio equipment I wanted at certain times of the day so I had to be extra careful to pick a time when the gym numbers would be lower.
Mid-morning (around 9-11) was usually a good bet. The before-work people were gone and the lunch rush had yet to come. But that was in Wenatchee, Washington. It’s a small town so the numbers aren’t going to match a gym in a city. Still, I would think mid-morning would be a good bet for the same reasons.
Lunch and evening would be insane no matter where you go so I’d advise avoiding those times.
Mid-afternoon I’m not sure. There’s the afternoon crash people feel and kids get out of school around that time. But most people work in the afternoons so I’m going to say that mid-afternoon (around 2-4) would have numerous people but not a “busy” amount. So you’ll most likely see a fair number but it shouldn’t inconvenience you with equipment and machines.
When in doubt, look at the class schedule. You can always tell when a gym’s attendance is going to be higher by looking at when the classes are taught. If there are no classes in the afternoon, numbers are too low to make it worthwhile to pay an instructor. Just because a class is being taught at a certain time, however, doesn’t dictate how many people will be in the weight and cardio areas. There are plenty of people who don’t go to the classes for whatever reason. But chances are, if there are no classes scheduled for awhile, then there aren’t a whole lot of people in the gym. Period. That’s why you’ll see a bunch of classes scheduled back-to-back in the evening and yoga and pilates in the super early morning.
Do I have a gym membership? No, I don’t. Not enough money even for the super cheap ones. My home is my gym. This is my workout area nowadays:
Yeah, out there past the deck on the driveway. The gravel driveway that is currently covered in snow. And when this happens, you’d better believe that I am not out there. In fact, I didn’t even want to go outside to take this picture which is why the deck is obscuring the view.
When this happens, my workout area moves to one of two places: A) upstairs in my bedroom, or B) first floor in a sort of “hallway” that has been made of stuff. The “hallway” has a recumbent bike (not mine and part of said stuff that created this path) that I can use for my cardio. My bedroom has just enough clear space for manual cardio (burpees, mountain climbers, quick feet, etc).
And here’s my equipment:
There’s more but this is what I use on a near daily basis. The iPad is there for workout videos…mostly from Blogilates. Really, I don’t even need this although I’d rather not do without the mat. You can do a perfectly fulfilling (translation: deadly) workout without any equipment at all. All you need is your body weight. But I can take only so much of that so I use dumbbells and sometimes bands. Depending on what exercises you’re doing you don’t even need shoes all the time. Woo!
Good luck with your New Year’s resolutions! And good luck with over-crowded gyms.