I feel as though Im really behind most of your readers. Im a lurker but I read all the comments and it seems like most of them area already fit or at least working out.
Im just starting. I have a lot of questions but the biggest one is how do I know what gym to join? Every one I go in does a big sales pitch and besides price they all seem the same.
Welcome, Newbie! I love when people delurk themselves (it far beats my having to drag you kicking and screaming outta cyberspace.).
Youd be surprised at the number of emails I receive from people who *wanted* to comment on a given post but were too shy. There’s no need to be shy, People! We may be silly, sarcastic, smart and sassy yet we’re ALWAYS wonderfully welcoming as well.
But I digress.
And you *know* I have many, many thoughts on your gym question.
The most important thing in my opinion is PROXIMITY. If a workout facility is more than a ten minute drive (and no, this does NOT include those of you whose closest facility is 10+ minutes away. Im thinking when there’s a choice) it gives one too much time enroute to abort your mission and veer off to a Starbucks.
Especially since you’re just starting to going to the gym a habit. Closer = good.
when I was first working out I opted for a gym I could walk to (more money) versus a 15 minute drive to a gym I could better afford. Im still convinced, even though I had to cut back in a few other areas of my life, Id not be the workoutwoman I am today had I opted for the other facility.
I know myself and Id have found a million and one excuses NOT to make the drive.
Set yourself up for success and select the closest acceptable club to you.
If there are a number of facilities within good driving distance think about which is what you are looking for with regards to gender make-up.
Personally, I am not a fan of the women only workout facility (in general. people love this one and having never been there I hath no insight. MizFits?).
I have found that too often the equipment is inferior.
I’ve repeatedly seen women-only clubs where more attention is paid to decorating and spa amenities than to buying cutting edge equipment. It’s a stereotype, sure, but stereotypes exist for a reason.
That said, your comfort level is crucial. If you’re a woman, emailer, and you cant see feeling comfortable starting out in a co-ed environment this option is definitely for you.
Now you must visit the health club and see what you think! Always go to look at a club during the time you’ll be working out.
See how crowded the facility is during the time you’d be training.
Whats the overall vibe of the place? It sounds silly but Ive joined gyms only to discover LATER that when I went was prime meat-market time. I didnt care what other people were doing but it did slow down my workout as exercisers (of both sexes) draped themselves inexplicably across machines NOT working out but also not *moving on.*
(oh, and it’s also important to see how plentiful parking spaces are at the time you will be arriving—I got a little off track with the mating ritual explanation)
Pay attention to how the staff greets you when you walk into the facility? Are they friendly or do you have to wait and wait to attract someone’s attention? Imagine how they will treat you after they have your money, if they ignore you before they’ve been given your check.
Once you have a staff member’s attention does (s)he offer to show you around the club or immediately whisk you away to a sales office? The staff should be eager to show you what the club offers before they try to sell you anything. If all progresses as they should have planned—the facility will sell itself!
As you walk through the club how does it appear to you? Does it look clean? Does the equipment appear new? (Ask the equipment’s age if you cannot tell!) Are safety rules posted? Is the workout area well lit? Does the exercise area appear well ventilated? Is the clientele one with whom you would feel comfortable exercising?
Also remember to check out the locker room. This is crucial if you are planning to shower at the gym after your workout. Are the showers clean? If you wish to leave things at the gym may you rent a locker? Does the club offer towels for showering? Is this an additional charge? How crowded is the locker room area? Will you be able to shower and dress and leave on time?
If you will be using it, also look into the childcare area. This is one area where you must go with your gut reaction: would you leave your child there even for a few minutes? Enough said.
After your tour, ask the staff member if the gym offers a complimentary workout for prospective members. I feel strongly that health clubs should offer this as an incentive to join their club. From my experience, the health clubs I have liked best were those where I was shown around, handed a class schedule, and encouraged to return and try everything out. This is also a good time to inquire if any orientation/training sessions are offered as part of the membership package. (If they aren’t–don’t panic. watch some Monday Facetimes and email me again).
If no complimentary workout is offered, and you don’t “just know” that this is the club for you, I suggest paying the nominal guest fee (every club has one) and experiencing a workout. After you have exercised in the club you will know what you think of the facility with regards to the levels discussed above. You are now ready to address membership fees with a salesperson, or to begin the club-interviewing process again.
What do you think emailer? Did I answer your question? MizFits? I *know* you have insights to add.
For me, when Im looking for a workout facility, I like to see a juice bar and a pro-shop.
I may never end up having a post workout shake—but I love having the option.
I may never
whip out the credit card and charge some pretty new workout clothes forget my clothes/shower supplies but in case I do I like knowing I can pick some up and not have to head back home.
additional thoughts? tips? you know where to leave ’em.
This next email really perked up my day. So Im sharing (& removed the name).
Nothing motivates me to get MY MizFit butt in gear like knowing others are out there trudging away along side me. even virtually (WOMAN Challenge team? consider this your WEDNESDAY call to ACTION!).
I GOT IT!!!!!
why am i so freakin excited about an orange bracelet? i guess cuz my life revolves around a 2 year old.
I was really draggin today and I got this and after XXX is done with his snack we are going out walkin! this will remind me that i am not just letting myself down but the whole team of mizfits if I dont go— this may just be what i needed.
(I received this a bit later)
I gathered the dogs and child and hubby and did a 30 minute WALK. proud of myself. also told hubby that the only reason i walked was my new snazzy bracelet — since he is not as impressed with my bright orange addition to my daily wardrobe as I am 🙂
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