Returning To The Gym Post Lockdown

With gyms across the country re-opening for the first time in months I know many people are feeling a little unsure or nervous about stepping through those doors again. A few of my clients/friends have shared their main worries which I fully can relate to, so I thought I would share some tips on how to make the whole experience a lot nicer.

#1 Take the pressure off!

One of the most important things to remember is we are all in the same boat. Yes, some people have been lucky enough to have had home gyms/equipment at home but that still doesn’t really recreate a gym environment. It’s perfectly normal to feel a little stressed about the loss of strength and fitness but what I like to point out to my clients is most of us all started from scratch once, there is always time to start again and build back up to where you were before. You might actually be surprised how quickly you can achieve this too. Most fitness competitions or races have been cancelled for this year anyway, so there is no need to feel pressured or worried about not being close to your old PBs – it really doesn’t matter, you can get them back!


#2 A phased return

It is so tempting to get carried away and want to hit the gym every single day for the first few weeks because you’ve missed it so much. It is also tempting to go back and try and start hitting the same sort of weights you were doing before lockdown in workouts. Where this might be absolutely fine for some people who have maintained their strength and fitness when the gyms were closed for a lot of people jumping straight back in to crazy intensity could a) lead to injuries or b) burn you out pretty quickly. Being realistic about things and building up the frequency of your training could be the best way to go.

#3 Go with a friend and join a class

Going to the gym with a friend is always a fun option especially if you like the same training styles. Having someone with you to train with not only makes the experience more enjoyable but also you can motivate one another. Same goes to joining in with a class, especially if it’s a new class. Joining a class is also a great way to meet new people and even better you have someone there responsible for telling you what to do and when to do it!

#4 Look after your body

You might find you’re feeling quite sore after the first few days back at the gym so be prepared for it! (See my previous post on the best way to treat muscle soreness) However, going back to the point of a phased return can also help with not feeling like you’ve been hit by bus after day 1. Always make sure you warm up and cool down properly too!

#5 Set some fresh goals

It might not be New Years day but now is a better time than ever to set some fresh goals and use them as motivation to get back into a healthy lifestyle. Like I pointed out before most things this year have been delayed/cancelled so you’ve got plenty of time for some short and long term goals. Once of you’ve set them think about the things you can actively do to achieve them and make a note of aspects you are and aren’t in control of.

Bonus Tip: If you like me bought a LOT of new workout clothes over the past few months use this as an opportunity to showcase your new wardrobe.

FREE 5 Session Programme

I wanted to give away 5 free sessions of a variety of workouts and skills all of which can be performed at home. Some of the exercises do require a bit of weight but if you don’t own a dumbbell/kettlebell you can easily get creative filling up some water bottles etc. The programmes that I design for my online and PT clients each week are personalised and progressive depending on their goals. This is just a taster of what some of my sessions may look like as well as some workout ideas for anyone interested in designing their own!


Make sure you are warmed up ready to go before each session, getting your heart rate up first followed by some dynamic stretching. I hope the videos are useful and as always any questions feel free to drop me a message via my Instagram! @ajfitness__


Session 1

Click for video demos

3 Rounds:

12 x DB Row + Kickback (L)

12 x DB Row + Kickback (R)

30 seconds: Tricep Extensions


3 Rounds:

12 x Kneeling Arnie Press (L)

12 x Kneeling Arnie Press (R)

30 Seconds: Box HSPUs*


*See video for scale. This exercise can either be done with feet or knees on a step/box.



4 Rounds:

40 seconds on 20 seconds off:

1) DB Swings*

2) Tricep Dips

3) Shoulder Taps

4) Push Ups


*Alternate arms each round

Continue reading “FREE 5 Session Programme”

5 Ways To Tackle Muscle Soreness

DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) is a common issue with everyone involved in fitness. So you might be wondering why you get it and what you can do to reduce or relieve it.

There is nothing worse than waking up the morning after an intense workout, getting out of bed and realising that stairs are going to be an issue today (I find walking down sideways helps!) Sometimes you might think you’ve gotten away with it, only for it to turn up the day after instead. This is because it can take any time between 24-72 hours for muscle soreness to kick in.

Continue reading “5 Ways To Tackle Muscle Soreness”