Gym Shopping

I picked up running four years ago when my roommate moved out very suddenly.  I had to make some cuts and my gym membership was the first thing to go, but I wanted to keep working out, so I hit the pavement.  When I could afford it, I joined a few different gyms here and there. 

I fell in love with running, but I really like having a gym to fall back on.  When I don’t have a specific training plan for the day, I find going to the gym to be like going to Fresh & Easy when you’re not sure what you want for dinner.  You’ll figure something out and the results will be favorable!

I started a three-month membership at a big gym here when I recently moved, but it just ran out. Despite not really using it, I’m itching to join a gym now so I toured a new one earlier this week.  I really wanted to like it.  But I hated it.  It got me thinking about what makes a good gym (to me).

  1. Location, location, location.  The closer the gym, the more likely I am to go. 
  2. Hours that work with my schedule.  I’m used to a particular gym that is open 24 hours.  Not to name names.  I know not all gyms are, but if a gym isn’t open early enough to make pre-work workouts a possibility or if they open too late on the weekends, it’s not going to work for me.
  3. Conveniently-timed classes.  I used to love my pre-work spin classes, but my schedule has changed and now I’ll settle for a handful of good classes after work and on the weekends.
  4. My must-haves– spin, kickboxing and a pool. 
  5. A friend or family member who goes to the same gym.  I’m okay with going on my own, but over the years I’ve always been more consistent when I had a friend going with me.
  6. A good vibe.  All the other things that affect how you feel about the gym.  If you’re not comfortable with where you’re working out, you just won’t go!  Plain and simple.

Basically ALL these things were not working for this new gym. My gym at my apartment complex works for now.  I have my running.  And there are a few more gyms to try out if I go through any major withdrawals.

What are your must-haves and deal-breakers when it comes to a gym?

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