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The Ultimate Beginners Guide To The Gym

Your beginners guide to a success gym session - HerbaChoices


Walking into a busy gym can be a daunting task, especially if it’s your first time you can be swept away with the variety of machines and range of exercises that can be done. Keeping it simple is key. At Crunch Fitness, we understand that starting correctly sets the tone for your entire fitness experience. It’s not just about lifting weights or running on treadmills; it’s about embracing a lifestyle change with enthusiasm and the right knowledge. With a supportive community and expert guidance, beginners can navigate the gym landscape confidently, transforming apprehension into achievement. Remember, your journey at the gym is not just a physical transformation, but a journey of self-discovery and growth.

Understanding your fitness goals

Setting realistic fitness goals is a crucial first step in your gym journey. It’s about understanding your current fitness level and envisioning where you want to be. These goals provide a clear direction for your workout routine, helping to tailor exercises that align with your aspirations, whether it’s building strength, losing weight, or improving overall health. Remember, attainable goals foster motivation and provide a sense of achievement as you progress. By setting specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals, you’re not just dreaming about fitness; you’re actively planning for success.

Getting started with Crunch Fitness 

Once you’ve set your fitness goals with Crunch Fitness, the next step is determining your gym schedule. It’s essential to consider the best time for you to work out, whether that’s in the morning, during lunch, or in the evening. Fitting gym sessions into your routine is key to maintaining consistency. Remember, the best time to hit the gym is the time that works for you. Establishing a regular schedule helps integrate fitness seamlessly into your life, laying the foundation for a lasting commitment to your health goals.

What to take: your gym essentials 

Now that you’ve sorted out your goals and your schedule, it’s time to pack your gym essentials. 

When you come to any Crunch fitness, you want to make sure: 

  • You are dressed in comfortable gym clothes 
  • You wear comfortable shoes (think sneakers or runners that are going to support you during your workout). 
  • A drink bottle 
  • A towel 
  • A matt (depending on whether you are going to a class and it’s specified that you need a matt) 
  • Post workout snack (in case you need a little pick me up) 

The importance of warming up and cooling down 

Before you start any gym session whether it’s a class or you’re on the floor, remember the importance of warming up and cooling down. The last thing you want is to get an injury because your muscles weren’t warm. 

Warming up and cooling down are an important component to any workout routine. It increases blood flow, loosens muscles, and readies your joints for activity. Cooling down, on the other hand, allows your body to gradually return to its resting state, helps in muscle recovery, and minimises post-exercise soreness. So remember to do these at the beginning and at the end of every workout! 

Basic gym equipment and their uses 

In any gym, familiarising yourself with basic equipment is key. When you sign up to Crunch Fitness, one of the first things your Crunch trainers will do is take you on a walk through of the facility and show you how to use machines and equipment for your safety. But here is a brief run down of the basics: 

  • Treadmills are perfect for cardiovascular workouts, helping to improve heart health and endurance. 
  • Weights, including dumbbells, kettlebells and barbells, are essential for strength training, targeting various muscle groups. 
  • Resistance machines, designed for specific muscle groups, offer a controlled way to build strength and are great for beginners.

If you want to find out more about how to use the machines and how to use them, always ask a Crunch trainer or reception who will be willing to assist you. Here are some useful links to some helpful exercise articles: 

Understanding these tools and their uses is fundamental to a well-rounded gym routine, ensuring you get the most out of your workouts.

Essential exercises for beginners

A good session is not defined by the amount of time spent in the gym however, more so the correct technique, enough rest in between sets, and lifting suitable weights. Staying consistent, lifting lighter than you think, and maintaining good form are all essential for creating strong foundations for a positive gym relationship.

Below we’ve outlined some easy yet effective exercises which you can start with as you begin to perspire to greatness!


The Goblet Squat is an easy introduction into lower body workouts. Activating the quads, glutes, hamstrings and hip flexors, this exercise will definitely make you feel the burn! Plus, little equipment is required!

Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold a kettlebell by its bottom in front of your chest, elbows down. You can also use a dumbbell.

Push your hips back, keep your back straight and torso forward, and bend your knees to lower into a squat, elbows brushing the insides of your knees. Hold for 3 seconds then push yourself back up.



Dumbbell lunges are another great lower body exercise for beginners. This exercise predominately targets the quads and glutes, along with the hamstrings.

Stand holding a dumbbell in each hand.

Step forwards into a lunge on your left leg. Hold for a beat.

Push off your left leg to return to the starting position and repeat.



Tried and tested. An exercise you can do anywhere in the gym! You can also add variety to this exercise, by placing your feet or hands on a bench to target the different muscles in your chest.

Start in a plank position. Your core should be tight, shoulders pulled down and back, and your neck neutral.

Bend your elbows and begin to lower your body down to the floor. When your chest grazes it, extend your elbows and return to the start. Focus on keeping your elbows close to your body during the movement.


A great upper body exercise which targets the shoulders. If you are feeling confident or want to change it up, you can use a barbell instead of dumbbells!

Pick a light set of dumbbells — and start by standing, either with your feet shoulder-width apart or staggered. Move the weights overhead so your upper arms are parallel to the floor.

Bracing your core, begin to push up until your arms are fully extended above your head. Keep your head and neck stationary and lower the weight back down.



A great exercise that targets the back. Aim to pull your elbows in towards your waist as this will minimise the bicep’s involvement.

Sit down on a cable pulldown machine. Using an overhand grip, place your hands at shoulder-width.

Lean your torso back at a slight angle and maintain a tall chest as you pull the bar to the top of your pecs.

Staying motivated and tracking your progress

Staying motivated and tracking progress are crucial for maintaining a successful fitness journey. Set small, achievable goals and celebrate each milestone to keep the motivation high. Keep a fitness diary or use apps to track your workouts, which not only helps in monitoring progress but also in identifying areas for improvement. Remember, every workout counts towards your goal. 

Ready to begin your fitness journey? It can be hard entering a new space, especially if you are not familiar with a gym set up, but here at Crunch Fitness we LOVE people stepping out of their comfort zones and trying something new.  We can’t wait to see you smashing your goals and enjoying your fitness journey. Sign up now and start transforming your life!


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Crunch Fitness Australia acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the lands across Australia as the continuing custodians of Country and Culture. We pay our respect to First Nations peoples and their Elders, past and present.

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