First of all I am so excited after over 2 weeks of not being able to go work out at the Y I get to go back on Monday :). I am so ready to be back, I have a goal of losing 10 more pounds before Oct. 28 we have a dinning out with the army, it is like a ball just a little less formal so 10 less pounds would make me look a lot better in my dress. Still have a ways to go till I hit my weight goal, but I am losing at a pretty steady pace, and I didn't gain back any weight while I was sick, can't ask for much more than that.
This weekend I was talking to a friend who just couldn't understand how I could be so focused at the gym, knowing what to do and not getting lost in the many machines they have available. There are a few things that help me stay focused in the gym. One is thankfully the Y branch closest to us is fairly small so it is not overwhelming and still has the stuff you need. Two is my husband, he knows his way around a gym and any exercise or muscle group I want to work he can help me. Then lastly is my friend Google, I figured out my overall goals and using different key words I found a workout plan that works for me. This is what I am using at the moment http://www.gymprofessor.com/gym-routines-toning-women.html I really like it and it eases you in to working out, so if you have been away from the gym for awhile ( like I had been) it is a great way to get back in to the groove.
Before you head to the gym figure out what are your fitness goals. Mine for example are loosing weight, muscle toning, and being healthy and in shape. Then figure out how many days a week you can work out. For me I can only do Monday, Wednesday and Friday at the gym. Next to Google, start using key words to help you find a work out for you. Then sit down and make sure you know how to do each thing correctly and come up with an alternative in case your gym doesn't have the machine/equipment you need. Then armed with your list so you don't forget anything head to the gym and get started. :)
I do the full toning work out 3 days a week, and cardio ( for me walking on the treadmill) I up my weight and walking pace when I feel like things are too easy, great rule of thumb if it is to easy then it is not going to do what you want it to do. I do abs once a week at home, and may up it to 2x here soon.
So with a little bit of planning and some help from Google you can use your time at the gym well. So much time can be wasted wandering from machine to machine and not doing enough reps of an exercise a good plan can help with that and make working out at the gym a breeze and the most beneficial.