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While for some of us it couldn’t come sooner, others might be nervous about the prospect of going back. What will the new gym environment be like? Is it safe? How do I build back up to the fitness level I was before? You might even want to try out hiring a personal trainer. If this sounds like you, then don’t worry - you’re not alone! Going to the gym can be daunting as it is, let alone after a 3 month break. If you’re ready to boost your confidence and fitness to where it was before, read on for our top tips on how to safely ease yourself back to the gym.

Don't push yourself too hard

Whether you've been sticking to strict home workouts during lockdown or haven't exercised at all, it's likely that your fitness level has changed if you were a regular gym-goer before. You might have been working out still, but without the same equipment you get at the gym, it's difficult to maintain the same level of fitness from before. If weight training is your thing, it's particularly difficult to work out without the heavy weights you get at the gym. You might want to hit it hard, but remember to go at a sensible pace to avoid sustaining injuries. Don't worry if you have to learn the basics from scratch - this is a healthy and safe way to build your fitness level back up. 

Keep at a safe distance

Life might be slowly returning to normal, but we’re not there yet. Covid-secure gyms are popping up everywhere in an effort to curb the spread of the virus. Fever checks upon entry, workout ‘pods’, and one-way systems are some of the new features designed to keep gyms safer. When you’re at the gym, keep your distance from others and wash your hands frequently.

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Try smaller group workouts

If you need a motivation boost, why not try group classes? Most people put more effort in when working out in a group as it brings out their competitive side - it’s also really fun! To keep everyone safe, gyms have introduced smaller class sizes as well as temporary floor markings, so it’ll be easy to keep your distance.

Bring your own equipment

Bringing your own equipment to the gym is a great way to reduce the spread of germs as well as waiting times, as you won’t need to wipe down equipment for the next person after you’ve used it. Remember to bring your own water bottle, too.

Workout from home

Lockdown has proven how adaptable we are. Whether it's Instagram live workouts or online bootcamps, we’ve come up with plenty of alternatives to going to the gym. If you’d rather stay at home, this doesn’t have to get in the way of achieving your fitness goals. With the powers of the internet you can do anything, and while you may not have proper gym equipment at home, towels and chairs are a pretty good alternative. You might even want to try out hiring a personal trainer. They’ll have the expert knowledge to get you back to your fitness level as safely and as quickly as possible, without having to set foot in a gym! Why not work out with your personal trainer in a park? Still too close for comfort? You could ask them if they offer online lessons - lots of them do. With a personal trainer, you also don’t need to worry about forking out for hefty gym membership fees. Personal trainers normally offer discounts for online sessions, so you can still afford to keep fit if you’re on a budget.

About the author: Katie Miles is an experienced writer with a passion for health and wellness and is currently a writer for Bark.com, a world-leading services marketplace with over 5m customers in 8 countries around the world. Katie writes about all aspects of fitness and is dedicated to helping readers achieve a healthier and better quality of living.