Help me get back in shape.
April 9, 2008 8:16 AM   Subscribe

Can you recommend a gym and/or personal trainer for an overweight, out of shape girl in Brooklyn?

I used to be in great shape, but not anymore! My two big problems with getting back to exercising are motivation and intimidation. I was thinking that having a personal trainer would help with the motivation problem. But, looking at a couple of prior AskMe's, people say the best way to find a personal trainer is to talk to the ones at your gym. Which leads into my second problem--intimidation. The thought of being the fat girl in the gym is very intimidating to me. I know I'd still be the fat girl in the gym if I were there with a personal trainer, but I'd at least have someone there to tell me what to do and help me out. If I have to go to a gym on my own, does anyone know of one in NYC frequented by un-fabulous, normal people rather than just superfit gym rats? I'm also not limited to just gyms. I'd like to her about alternative workout possibilities, like yoga or pilates or whatever else is out there if you know of a place that would have a welcoming environment for someone like me.

Any advice, recommendations on gyms, personal trainers, workout programs, etc?
posted by Mavri to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Responding by MeFi mail ....
posted by JimN2TAW at 8:20 AM on April 9, 2008

Crunch (I go to the big one on Lafayette) is the least pretentious big gym in the city, no-one cares much how they look, even the trainers are normal fit people not Shape/Flex cover models. I can grab a guest/discount pass for you if you want; you get a free trainer session when you sign up.
posted by nicwolff at 10:54 AM on April 9, 2008

Call Crossfit Brooklyn.
posted by tiburon at 11:32 AM on April 9, 2008

the women at brooklyn women's martial arts are a good group of folks, if you're looking for martial arts sort of fitness.
posted by rmd1023 at 1:22 PM on April 9, 2008

I'm the fat chick at the gym too (Crunch and Equinox)....what's helped is bringing my ipod and keeping the buds in my ears as long as possible. I've had classes at the Integral Yoga Center which I enjoyed--though there was one instructor with attitude (what threw me off wasn't the center's atmosphere, but my father's telling me "it wasn't good enough" to use the video at home...yeah my brain knows that I should have told him to get stuffed.

Nthing CAE (the former Brooklyn Women's Martial Arts; where I took self- defense classes).

What I didn't like about Crunch was the endless rap in the locker rooms. Also, one needs to be firm about one's wants with the trainers and not be pushed into paying for things s/he doesn't need.
posted by brujita at 10:37 PM on April 9, 2008

I went through the same thing you did and finally decided that I would brave feeling like the fat girl at the gym so that I didn't have to feel like the fat girl everywhere else. Face it, all gyms in NYC (maybe less so in Brooklyn) are full of fab and fit people so there really isn't any way to avoid it. If you really can't get past this, try working out at home until you feel fit enough to be at the gym. I am sure there are personal trainers who will come to your house and help you set up a routine using dumbbells, barbells etc. The trainer can also help you set up a cardio routine either at home or walking. Something is better than nothing. I did that on my own for a while but it WAS hard to get up the motivation to work out at home without a trainer.

I finally found my motivation to go the gym because work wasn't paying me OT to work during my break but still gave me work, so I needed something to get me out of the office during my break. My motivation was to "stick it to the man" and that overrode my fear of looking bad at the gym.

Most gyms will give you 1 free session with a trainer. I would recommend working out on your own for a while to check out the trainers, see how they are with their clients, the kinds of workouts they do etc. While you are working out, ask a trainer for help with a machine to see how they interact with you. At my gym I see a lot of trainers chatting with their friends or texting while they are supposed to be paying attention to their client...look for stuff like that. Once you think you have found someone you might be able to work with, ask them or ask the gym to set you up with a free session with that person.

I was working out on my own for about a year and finally got a trainer; it made a huge difference in my ability to push myself (I already had the motivation to go to the gym) which is really worth the money I am spending. I was lucky to find the one trainer at my gym who actually pays attention.
posted by kenzi23 at 9:13 AM on April 10, 2008

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