Have you ever been in a gym facility and felt overwhelmed with all the lingo people are using? Feel like you don’t fit in? The following definitions are for “Newbies”, a person new to the gym environment, who has no experience with equipment and fitness. So if you are confused when you hear people talk, or are overwhelmed so you don’t even start, hopefully, these can help you get a handle on a few basic terms used in the fitness and gym industry.

Repetitions (reps): the number of times you perform a specific exercise.

Set: the number of cycles of reps that you complete. For example, after 8 repetitions, you take a break and that’s considered a set. Then you start with 8 more repetitions, for another set.

Progression: this can include increasing the weight resistance, repetitions or number of sets.

Machines: these are the equipment that takes up a lot of the gym floor. They are a good way to learn how to do exercises properly if you are by yourself. Make sure you follow the instructions on the machine or research before you go. Also, there are weight machines and cardio machines.

Cardio: you can do cardio with or without machines. However, if you are using a machine, look for ones named treadmill, elliptical, stair master or bike among others.

Spot: when someone asks you to “spot” for them, they want you to watch their form and potentially help them with the weight if it’s too heavy. It’s good to know what this means so you can either say yes, or no if you’re not comfortable.

Rack it up: Put the weights back! Make sure when you’re using weights, bars or anything to put it back after use. This is very important for safety and cleanliness of the space.

Functional movement: multi-joint or complex movements that work multiple muscles at the same time. Some include squats or pushups.

Interval training: this includes bursts of light and intense exercise. It is a very popular way of exercising for its maximum fat burning potential and also quick and effective.

Personal trainer: these are the professionals who help their clients reach their goals through safe and effective exercises. You can see them mostly doing 1:1 work on the gym floor.

“How many sets do you have left?”: when a machine is being used, and someone comes and asks you this, they are wondering how long they have to wait for the machine.

I hope these definitions help when you are beginning your journey, or even trying to get more involved in fitness. If there’s something you want to know or another term you want to learn, let me know! I’ll add it in next time.

Until next time,

Keep living your best life,