The beginners Guide to Ignite Fitness

Congratulations on making the first step in taking control over your health!!  We know what a big step that is.  So first, let me welcome you to Fitness Penance.

Second, thank you for picking us.  Each Fitness gym (called a box) has its own individual vibe, so if you’ve shopped around for the right Fitness experience, we are honored that you chose us to help you change your life.

In October 2017, we started our beginner’s program – Ignite Fitness.  This class is an intro into fitness for people who are not used to moving around, or for people with injury or mobility issues to learn to move their bodies again in a small group environment.  It is also our introduction to Fitness techniques using light-weight and body-weight movements.  Ignite familiarizes members with the best of Fitness by marrying all the different genres of fitness and combining them in each class so that members are challenged and engaged without being overwhelmed.  And as always, it’s instructor-led and coached throughout so members are never left wondering what to do next.

To help you, we have compiled a list of guidelines to help new and potential members navigate their first few months with us.

Beginners Guide to Ignite

1. Come as often as possible

It sounds counter-intuitive, but it actually works.  The absolute best way to make progress (and minimize muscle soreness) is to be in the gym as often as possible.  As your body adjusts to regular movement and body-weight strength training, your muscles will be sore.  Our programming is written with the assumption that athletes will be in the gym every class, and the best medicine for muscle fatigue is exercise.

2. Be ready to learn a new language

Fitness has a language all its own (AMRAP, EMOM, DU, etc).  No one joins our gym for the very first time and automatically knows what we’re talking about.  The good thing is, you won’t be alone learning this new language.  Also, you’re very likely to see movements that you’ve never heard of before.  Don’t feel overwhelmed – our coaches are there to demonstrate new exercises and safely instruct you through your progressions.

3. Communicate your needs and goals

What do you want to accomplish when you take control of your health?  Do you want to lose weight?  Lower blood pressure?  Do you want to come off certain maintenance medicines?  Do you want more energy and better mobility?  What injury or issues do we need to work around?  Communication is key.  Fitness is for every body because our coaches are able to modify the movements in here to meet you where you are in your fitness journey.  In order for them to adjust your workout, however, they need to know where you’re starting from.  Talk to us.

4. Be open minded

Our workouts are challenging and some days are harder than others.  Trust the process.  We program the workouts, offer the advice, and encourage the hard choices that we do, because we have seen them work time and again.  We know that not everyone wants to be a games athlete.  Which is good because our goal is to help the people in our community live healthier lives.  But we need you to know that your mindset will help your success just as fast as all the other little changes.  Keep your mind open.

5. Nutrition is crucial

Once you really get into the swing of things, the amount of time you spend with us is minimal compared to the rest of your day.  Your nutrition is going to be responsible for your progress – or lack thereof.  Processed foods, foods high in sugar, salt and preservatives, and sugar-laden drinks will not help you get the results you want.  Eating lean meats, healthy fats and a wide variety of produce every day will fuel your body better, keep your caloric-intake in check, and fill you up faster.  DO NOT sabotage all your hard work in the gym with poor food choices.

6. Be patient

Changing behaviors is hard work.  But it’s work worth doing.  Nothing happens overnight.  We don’t make you change everything all at once.  In fact, we don’t tell you that you HAVE to change anything.  But when you’re ready to take the next step in reclaiming your health, we advocate for small adjustments made over time that add up to major improvements.  We can’t wave a magic wand or give you a pretty little pill to make you immediately stronger or healthier.  In here, we’ll introduce you to a new way of thinking, an awesome group of people who will encourage you and celebrate your progress as a whole, and give you the chance at a life you didn’t even know was possible.

We know you’re here for a reason.  The reasons are always personal, but the message is the same.  You want help.  And that’s what we do.  We help people reclaim their health, put them back in control of the process, and support them the entire way.

The following 6-week guideline series is aimed to help you as the newcomer feel less overwhelmed about the process.  It’s also to show you that every person in here has a story, and their story rarely reads “I’ve always been in perfect health and consistently practiced healthy eating principles.”

Get ready to have some fun!

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