My Planet Fitness Workout Routine

***This is the most popular post I have ever written on this blog.  So many people have written to me expressing that it was helpful. I decided to go ahead and also give this post a tab of its own at the top of the blog so it might help others starting out on a fitness journey.****


I joined a gym and I’m going to tell you all about it

But before I do, I want you to know that if you are significantly obese and feel you can’t exercise

Or that you have to join a gym or buy exercise equipment

Or workout for a full hour to make a difference

Well that is NOT the case

So even though I joined a gym,  I want you to remember that is not where I started

I started walking at 417 pounds.

30 seconds at a time.

You can read about it here

I counted mailboxes.  Mine.  Then the next door neighbors

The house after that

Eventually I made it to 5 miles

And then I had a setback

My knee was injured and I could barely walk

I had to take some time off

Due to a meniscus tear and arthritis in my left knee, I was told to stop the lengthy walks

And try swimming instead

So I got in the pool and started swimming

And then my brother  who has been a huge inspiration to me through this process came out to visit last weekend

To help me rethink my exercise routine

He took me to Planet Fitness and now I’m a member!

My brother gave me a great workout that I can do even with my knee issues

I am going to share it with you because maybe it can help others

Planet Fitness is a very low-key, nonjudgemental enviroment

Which is great for someone who feels apprehensive about the gym

And they’re cheap!

10 bucks a month!

You may look at my routine and think…huh??

Can that really be enough?

But if increasing 30 seconds at a time worked for me the first time

Then it will work for me now

It’s easy and do-able

And because of that it is a guaranteed victory!

You start simple

Keep it simple

Check the box

Accomplish your goals

And before you know it those 30 seconds will take you longer than you ever imagined they could!

So I’m taking you with me for a day in the life of me at Planet Fitness.

Here we go!



Front Desk


They are so non-judgemental that they have a giant bowl of tootsie rolls at the front door. I’m staying away from these!! Candy and I are no longer friends 🙂

They also have Bagels and Pizza. Skipping those too as they are literally two of my formerly favorite binge foods!

This is what it looks like when I walk in. Plenty of equipment!

No critics!

You belong!

Judgement Free Zone



Lunk Alarm!


Now here is the exact workout my brother gave me


Here is my first stop. The Recumbent Bike.


You have to adjust the seat to work for you

I go for 10 minutes at Level 2. I wear a heart rate monitor that has two components. It wraps around my waist (yes I can get it around there now!). The other part is a watch. The equipment automatically picks up my heart rate from the monitor I am wearing.

No need to hold onto the bars to get a heart rate!

The heart rate monitor has become invaluable. I know what my heart rate is when I’m working out intensely. It lets me know what to aim for and what is too low or too high.

The 1st 10 minutes on the bike are my warm up.

The 2nd 10 minutes are at a higher intensity and THIS is what I add 30 seconds to every day

So today I was up to 11 minutes and 30 seconds. Tomorrow it will be 12. And so on


The fact that I can FIT on the bike is a very big deal. I could not have done that 150 pounds ago!

I will admit that I was scared to get on the bike because of my knee injury. I thought bending my knee like that would probably just make it worse.

I was wrong. The recumbent bike has made a big difference already. My knee does initially hurt when I start using it. Cracking and popping and making lots of fuss!

But after about 5 minutes, it settles in and I’ve found that I can bend it and go up stairs much easier even after just a few days!!

After the bike, I move to the Elliptial


The first day I got on it (which was just last week) my heart rate was already into the 140’s and all I had done was stand on it!

It reminded me of the first day I started counting mailboxes

But now I’m up to 5 minutes

I started with 4 and I am actually only adding 15 seconds a day!

My brother and I discussed it and decided that is best for this one

It will get my heart rate up into the maximum zone faster than anything

I have a feeling that this will be my toughest challenge yet


After my bike and elliptical routines, I head to the stretching area where I get a floor mat


I literally get down on the floor and then get back up

Trust me–this is HARD for me

I have not been able to get on the floor and then get back up in YEARS

For me this is a major accomplishement

My brother has me doing a yoga move called Cat-Cow

Basically you are on your hands and knees and you stretch

You look up and arch your back like a cow

And then you look down and move your back up like a cat

I started with 4 times and I add one every day

Today I did 6



I think I have my eyes closed in this picture!! But at least I got back on my feet!!

Do I feel kind of stupid getting up and down off the floor?

A little

But who cares. I’m there for ME

And to be truthful–I have seen so far people of every age, size and even disability in this gym

It is not a place that makes you feel self conscious

So now you know my entire Planet Fitness Routine

I drop the kids off at school and head immediately to the gym

Just the fact that I’m exercising again has made a HUGE difference

Mentally more than physically

When you accomplish the goals you set, your confidence grows

My brother calls exercise the Anti-Venom

And it’s true

Because even if it’s 30 seconds

It’s the fact that you set a goal and you accomplished it

And when you do that, a switch flips in your brain

And says WOW!


And it seeps over into other areas

Like eating

You gain strength and power from accomplishing those goals

And it gives you the ability to overcome in other areas too

So in some ways I’m starting over again

Getting back into exercise after my setback

But this is a lot like my life

Sometimes you’re cruising along and get derailed

But that’s when you regroup

And start again

Whether it’s 15 seconds or 30 seconds at a time

Slowly but surely we will win the race!



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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Danny May 29, 2015 at 11:23 am

Note to self: The owners/managers of planet fitness are (greedy!!!) geniuses.

Sell a “non-judgemental” environment where people get to eat candy, pizza and other fattening stuff and just reap the profits. If it would take you a year to get to your weight goal, eating unhealthy will sure push that out to 4 years. Bamm, 3 years of pure profit for planet fitness. Am I the only one seeing this?


Wendy January 12, 2016 at 8:04 pm

Danny, that’s precisely why I won’t give them my business!! I can’t believe they have candy and food days like that for people working out in a gym. Most of which are there to lose weight. Pure greed, indeed.
Wendy recently posted..{ two years }My Profile


Erika June 23, 2015 at 5:02 pm

Just wanted to say that you completely rock! Seriously!


Tanya July 16, 2015 at 2:44 pm

I’m so excited that you’re in San Antonio.. I am too and I’m a planet fitness member as well.

I stay away from the candy, pizza and bagels.. Its really easy to breeze by them if you’re focused on fitness

I have a mental sign that says.. eat those.. work out LONGER (I wish they would put an ACTUAL sign there that says

You rock! I’m completely motivated by you 😀


Ebony August 29, 2015 at 2:21 pm

You motivated me 300% to start working out again. i used to be a cheerleader that could tumble from one end of the mat to the other until i fractured my rotator cuff and was told to stop or i could risk more damage. That happened 4 years ago and i haven’t been able to work out the same. I never liked going to the gym, running, or plain working out in general. I preferred some sort of activity so i didn’t realize what i was doing. When i decided enough was enough and bought my Planet Fitness membership i would go and ride the bike do a couple leg workouts and leave. I got on Pinterest and searched planet fitness workouts and that’s when i came across your workout plan first. I was in utter disbelief at how you lost so much weight coming from where you started ( 30 seconds a day) that motivated me so much i jumped up and went right to the gym. I’ve been doing your workout ever since.. I’m up to 2 minutes running while I’m on the treadmill for a total of 20 minutes. i haven’t been consistent with the other workouts but I’m starting today ! your the best motivator out there I’ve told all my coworkers about your story and now we have our own little group going ! your awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Fiona August 31, 2015 at 9:01 pm

You are a beauty. I am an older women badly in need of exercise and need some hand holding…I will try your recommendations above and am also looking for same approach to strength training exercises. Would you know where to direct me?


Kathleen October 8, 2015 at 5:28 am

Just wanted to tell you how inspiring you have been to me. I started out at 537 pounds last March, and am down 98 pounds. I have a long way to go, but stories like yours give me hope. I just started blogging. I’m far from an expert, but it’s a great place to share and to have accountability. Blessings!


SueEllen April 10, 2016 at 11:25 pm

Thank you for the planet fitness pics and info. I joined online during the recent $1 down/$10 per month promo…while out of town…and will be going tomorrow after work for the first time. <3


Lesia June 30, 2016 at 7:22 pm

you are an inspiration…


Goncalo December 2, 2016 at 1:38 pm

First of all, good for you.
But I have to say that Planet Fitness is a joke. They claim to be non-judgemental while judging everyone and kicking people for being too loud or too fit. They want you because you were overweight and they can keep you around for a long time.


Kimberley January 19, 2017 at 4:28 pm

Hello, I have to say that I’ve been so inspired by you and everything that I’ve read about your story has sparked fire under my ass again. This challenged me to put things into perspective and not make excuses even when I’m legitimately tired and exhausted, it will be worth the sacrifice in the end. I’d like to know if you’d be my accountability partner. Thank You and GOD BLESS YOU (and your brother as well)


christine davis February 28, 2017 at 9:42 pm

Your story is VERY inspirational! My weight has been up and down for years. Currently at 245. I used to go to Planet Fitness and LOVED the treadmill but my dr said no more for varied reasons. I now get up at 5:30 am every morning and hit the pool. I’ve got a water proof IPOD and I jog to the music. I started out slow and just this week, well, I’m now up to 2 hours and I’ve been hitting 10,000 steps on my fitbit before I even get out of the pool. It seriously energizes me. Slow and steady! I started my own blog about health(ier) eating and it really helps me to stay on track. See you around on fb, fellow blogger! Christine


Gracie March 25, 2017 at 5:14 pm

What an inspiration your web site has been.


HELPER June 13, 2017 at 12:05 am

Wow that’s awesome! I have thought about doing the challenge as well. I’m glad that you had such great success! That bloated and puffy feeling is what gets me the most and makes me not feel as great.


Joe H December 17, 2017 at 4:14 pm

Great story.. can you contact me via e-mail>



Al December 29, 2017 at 3:54 am

I am so proud of you! You are an inspiration! You proved that if you want something bad enough, you will go out there and get it and don’t let nothing get in your way. It was a long journey but you never gave up. Awesome accomplishment. check out my fitness site


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