A 30 Day Fitness Challenge that Will Actually Leave You Much Happier

Hi sweet friends,

Yanking off your covers and heading out to tackle the gym is often much less appealing than hitting the snooze button and finishing your beautiful dreams. I get it.

One of the reasons I find several of my clients frustrated and fed-up with tackling the gym is because they get bored; really bored. That’s because they are repeating the same routine over and over again.

So here is some advice to re-program your thinking about the gym and exercise all together. For the next 30 days, try a new form of exercise each day. Yes it might sound challenging but even if it is a new eight minute buns segment on Demand (a few minutes will get you inspired and uplifted).

How do know this works? When I first moved to NYC I was burned out. While working out I was constantly looking at the clock – tick tock – as I pushed to get through the last couple minutes of the same routine, the upward and downward dog that I have done oh-so-many times.


I decided enough was enough and for 30 days straight made a commitment , I tested gym after gym, allowing myself to justify it because it allowed me to determine where I was the happiest doing my daily routine while rocking out to my favorite music.

So finally, after my poll dancing bruises subsided, my neck healed from my intended lotus headstand, and after falling in love with a pilates instructor (not romantically), I had found the perfect gym for me. Not needing to spend a dollar to get in the best shape of my life was another great reason for me to be happy to sign on the dotted line.

Looking back, if I would have committed myself on day one to the first gym I’d found, I would have spent, on average, an hour a day in an environment where the energy wasn’t right for me. Chances are my workouts wouldn’t have improved, and I wouldn’t have re-discovered pilates – which was able to fix so many high-heel induced aliments throughout my body with the help of the gliding reformer. Not only is my gym a great environment for me, but I have also met some incredible people. I always leave feeling uplifted and inspired, although I am sure the roof top pool is contributing to this as well.

I am not recommending forgoing your annual gym membership for year-round trial and error, but I believe the reasons why people quit working out are because they lack the confidence to try new things, their routine gets boring, and their environment doesn’t support change. I encourage you to set a goal for yourself – to try new classes, split up your cardio between four machines, hire a personal trainer at least once, encourage a friend to take dancing lessons with you, dance to the Latin rhythm of Zumba in your living room, take your puppy to Doga (doggy yoga), or even experiment with an extreme sport like paddle boarding. There are endless ways to change the “scene” in order to support what makes you happy and gets you excited to sweat.

yoga mat

Here are some other tips for buying and keeping a gym membership:

  1. Pay for a visit.  If you really can’t convince them to let you try the gym, then pay for a visit – or several. It is better to spend a little bit of money upfront than to sign that contract and be stuck for an entire year at a gym that you never show up to.
  2. Stay local.  I find with most of my clients that if it takes them more than 15 minutes to get to a gym, they just won’t go. I understand. In our extremely busy world it is difficult to spend an hour commuting in traffic. So stay close, and narrow the search.
  3. Talk to members. Have a little chat with your new friends from spin class about what they like and dislike. Asking them about their experience is a really good way to learn what it’s like to workout there 5 days a week.
  4. Check credentials. As crazy as it might sound, here and there you find a trainer that doesn’t have the right credentials to actually be teaching you headstands. So make sure to verify your instructor’s training and years of experience.
  5. Negotiate. Gyms owners understand that you have other options, so make sure to negotiate your rate. If you have researched the membership fees, amenities, and services offered by competitors, you have a much better chance of sealing the deal with the rate you want, so come to the bargaining table prepared.
  6. Be very wary of perks. There are often certain perks that are not included in standard rates. So before you shed tears over your rate doubling because you wanted to attempt the newest “trapeze dance” workout, make sure to ask about all additional costs. Oh yea, some gyms even charge to use their lockers.

So go…get off the couch and explore your different options. Eventually, I promise you will find something that will fuel you to be happier and healthier than you are today!

xo Sarah Anne

Sarah Anne Stewart

Sarah Anne coaches, writes, speaks and teaches. But most importantly she introduces individuals to the world of WELLNESS. Translation? She helps inspiring wellness warriors kick failure to the curb so they can embrace health, discover happiness, claim their badass dreams, and live their BEST possible life.

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