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Zero in on your gym type with this quiz—crafted by Gold's Gym Fitness experts—then learn how to mix up your routine for a better workout.
We got in touch with two Gold's Gym Fitness Institute members to help you identify your fitness personality. Belisa Vranich, a clinical psychologist and author of Get a Grip: Your Two-Week Mental Makeover, helped us craft insightful questions; and Robert Reames, author of Make Over Your Metabolism, gave us suggestions for how each personality can revamp or adjust their workout for the best results. To get started, take the seven question quiz below.
1How far in advance do you plan your workout?
A. No need to plan—I've got my routine down pat.
B. I don't. I just let my mood decide.
C. Weeks in advance. Doesn't everyone?
D. I wait to see what machines are available.
E. I usually check in with friends to find out what their workout plans are before I start to plan mine.
2How would you describe your personality in general?
A. Dependable, organized and steady
B. Agreeable, fun and pretty mellow
C. Intense (at times), motivated and adventurous
D. Shy with strangers, but warm and generous with friends and family
E. Outgoing, easy to be around and loyal
3What are your listening/viewing habits at the gym?
A. I strap on my headphones, turn on the music and get to work.
B. I'll pick TV over music if I control the remote.
C. I spend free time crafting workout playlists.
D. Sometimes I read books, sometimes I watch television. It's a toss-up.
E. I don't like wearing headphones—I feel like I'm tuning out the people around me.
4Outside of the gym, how do you stay active?
A. I'm always up for a pickup game.
B. I don't really—that's why I go to the gym.
C. Triathlons, 10K races—you know, the fun stuff.
D. Maybe an afternoon walk or an easy bike ride.
E. I love to do charity walks with groups, or fun runs with my family.
5Why did you join a gym?
A. I missed the routine of daily practice, having played a lot of sports when I was young.
B. Just seemed like the thing a healthy adult should do.
C. I couldn't afford to build a gym in my house.
D. I wanted to start doing more than just long walks.
E. My friends joined.
6What do you do between sets or cardio sessions?
A. Grab a drink of water, then keep going.
B. Send a text or check my e-mail.
C. Check my heart rate, then get right back to work.
D. Look for a free machine that I already know how to use.
E. Stop to chat with a gym buddy.
7What is the extent of your gym know-how?
A. I can pretty much jump on any cardio or weight machine in the joint.
B. I know what I need to know.
C. Extensive—I was using balance balls for my ab workout before the Pilates crowd caught on.
D. It's passable. I've mastered a few machines and the treadmill.
E. Pretty good. And if I need help, I just ask a trainer.
Now tally up your score to figure out your fitness personality.
Mostly A's: Daily Grinder
You grew up playing sports and started hitting the gym early, but now you've settled into a routine. The danger is that your workout probably lacks variety and could get so dull that you'll quit. "Try new things," Reames says. "Like biking to work or running to the gym to add some scenery. To add variety, take some classes." A boot camp class or a mixed martial arts class can work many of your muscle groups and also deliver a healthy dose of cardio. Join a training group, which will almost simulate that feeling of going to practice, or a co-ed sports league. Breaking out of a daily routine just might renew your old love of fitness.
Mostly B's: Laid-back Lifter
You go to the gym because you know you should go, but your heart isn't in it and you aren't pushing yourself toward any fitness goals. "But going to the gym is half the battle," Reames says. "Try taking a group workout class that incorporates weights and weight-room exercises like squats and curls to get more out of your gym time. Hire a trainer for a session or two, and create a road map for your fitness future. If you can't afford it, maybe ask your friends and family to buy you a session as a Christmas present." The most important thing is changing the way you see the gym—instead of seeing it as a daily duty, try to view it as a long-term commitment to your body.
Mostly C's: Workout Warrior
Fitness rules your life. Being active and healthy is one of your top priorities, and you enjoy it. You don't need much advice when it comes to the gym, but you might need to slow down every once in a while to let your body rest and enjoy a little variety. "You're a high achiever with a regimented workout, but having variety in your workout makes you stronger and works more muscle groups," Reames says. Try taking a yoga class to make sure your muscles get a good stretch, a Zumba class to throw a fun twist (or two) into your routine or a mixed martial arts class to punch up your normal routine. Also, next time you achieve a big fitness goal—like running that marathon or finishing an ironman—make sure to post a photo of your victorious finish on our Facebook page.
Mostly D's: Fitness Fledgling
You're a recent recruit to the gym-going ranks (even if it has been a few years) who's still trying to get in shape, so you're a little nervous to try out new machines or new classes. "Discovery is really enjoyable," Reames says. "The problem is you get in a rut because you do only what you know—it's like you're stuck a safety net." The first thing you need to do is ask for a free physical assessment (most gyms offer them) to gauge your fitness level. Then start asking questions. If you want to know how to use a machine properly, ask a trainer. If you're nervous to try out a fitness class, approach the teacher beforehand, ask her how physically hard the class is, and explain any concerns you have. Think about hiring a personal trainer to learn new moves or revamp your gym routine. The more you know about fitness, the more you'll learn to enjoy it.
Mostly E's: Gym Butterfly
Being social is half the reason you hit the gym. Getting in a workout while catching up with friends or family (or making new friends) keeps you going back. You just need to make sure that between conversations at the water cooler, you really are burning calories. If your fitness routine isn't showing any results, maybe think about cutting back on the chitchat and try circuit training. "Cross-train on the bike, then the elliptical, and minimize your rest period," Reames advises. "Get your workout in faster; then you'll have more time to socialize." You can also try to recruit your friends to join you for a boot camp or spin class. It just might make your friendships even stronger, Reames notes: "Group classes really promote a camaraderie among people; it can bring them really close."