Going to the gym isn’t the hard part, staying there is

Far too often, even those with the best of intentions cannot sustain their enthusiasm for the local gym and attendance dwindles, despite membership fees.

But just like the athletes many wish to emulate, it’s all about having a winning game plan.

“You really have to be in the right type of routine,” said Jeff Rutstein, president of Custom Fitness in the Longwood Medical area, which offers individual attention to an older client base. “So many people will go to a gym and have no idea what they’re doing. People join the bigger clubs and just feel intimidated when they walk in there. You can’t put that pressure on yourself. If you have the right trainer who understands where you’re coming from and will show you the right way to exercise, you won’t get hurt and you’ll stick with it and see results.”

A solid game plan includes a set workout schedule — three to four times per week in 30- or 60-minute blocks that establish a familiar, realistic routine. Once there, a rotating breakdown of certain activities — weights one day, spinning class another, cardio another — keeps the workout fresh and results balanced.

“You really have to take baby steps with it,” Rutstein said. “Instead of, ‘I have to lose 40 pounds,’ say, ‘I’ll go to the gym today and I’ll feel better afterward.’ That’s the approach you should take. You’re much more likely to stick with the program.”



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