If your New Year’s resolution is to get in shape, one way to ensure that you stick to your goal is to join the right gym for your needs.

January is the time of year when most people find the motivation to join a gym.  But if you don’t choose the right fitness center, you set yourself up to fail.

“Pick a gym with personal trainers with real certifications and knowledge. If you uncover a health issue, having a knowledgeable group to tap into is critical.”

- Jared Deptula, director of fitness at Chelsea Piers Sports Club in New York City

Resolutions may start to wear off come spring, but if you follow these tips for making a commitment to a work out at the right facility, you’ll never fall out of love with your choice, or find an excuse not to get fit.  

Options
What will keep you working out through the year?

Often, people get bored with machines. Jared Deptula, director of fitness at Chelsea Piers Sports Club in New York City, advises gym-seekers to look for a place with lots of options.  

“Look beyond machines –Pilates classes, yoga classes, group fitness, personal training. You want to find a gym that has all of these,” he said. Deptula also suggested looking for a spot with cycling, boxing, basketball and team sports.

Trainers
Proper training techniques and guidance are important for staying on track.

“The last thing you want to do is start your New Year’s resolution and get lost in the equipment and do something wrong,” he added.

If you have never had formal instruction or need a refresher course, trainers are there to help.

“Pick a gym with personal trainers with real certifications and knowledge,” Deptula said.  “If you uncover a health issue, having a knowledgeable group to tap into is critical.”

Socialize
Make getting in shape fun. 

“Pick a gym with teams and groups you can join.  This give you accountability and goals to hit,” he said. 

Many gyms offer group activities like sports teams or races. Deptula pointed out this is also a less expensive option to hiring a personal trainer.

Socialize to meet new friends or get your friends involved in the action. This is also a great way for singles to find someone with common interests.

Outdoor Component
If you are looking for an escape after being cooped up in the office all day, look for a facility that has an outdoor area or running/walking group. 

“It's nice to have the option to go for a group class run outside or do yoga on a sundeck,“ Deptula said.  “This can be key when spring fever hits and your new year's resolution is wearing off.”

Time Matters
You don’t want to wait for a machine. This frustration is enough to make you turn around and leave. 

“Pick a gym that doesn't set time limits on machines.  A quick way to get deterred at the gym is showing up and having to wait in line for a piece of cardio equipment,” Deptula suggested.  “It's hard enough getting there, make sure once you are there, there is plenty of space for you.” 

January is traditionally a busy month, making it that much more critical to start out on the right foot.

More Tips. . . 
Deptula also suggested you pick a gym that offers options that interest you.

“If you don’t like yoga, you’re not going to go. But if you like a team sport, you’ll go and get a good workout,” he said.

Another tip: Before you commit to a health club membership, make sure you like the vibe. “The gym should give you a mental break. If you like the vibe, it will make the experience enjoyable,” Deptula added.

And with all things, you are only going to get better with practice. “Pick a gym that has access to sports performance for elite level athletes and also caters to beginners with learn- to programs - that way you can grow,” Deptula said.