The Gym and Me: A Love Story

Do you remember when Chandler Bing wanted to quit the gym?  And it was virtually impossible?  Not so at LA Fitness (it was actually somewhat offensive, how unfazed they were by my leaving).

In Queens, I was a member of the New York Sports Club.  It was about five blocks from my apartment; the price was not astronomical, and they totally had little TVs on the treadmills.  Little TVs!  That’s the dream.  I was traveling a lot, both for work and for J (who lived in Philly), but I still used the gym whenever possible.  (Little TVs!)

When I moved to Philly in 2007, I joined LA Fitness.  There were no televisions attached to any equipment, and I could no longer walk to the gym; I had to drive about 15 minutes.  Still traveling for work, I went less often.  Nonetheless, I never considered getting rid of my membership.

I finally froze said membership for a short time when we moved to Big D.  I quickly unfroze when I discovered a gym within five minutes of our new place, and I felt comfortable dropping Hendrik off at the Kids’ Club.  I would get totally crazy: I’d work out for a time, get on the stationary bike and READ for a time, even hit the showers for some blissful alone time before scooping up my happy child and getting on with our day.

I went fairly often while I was pregnant with Ailie as well; by the time summer in Texas rolls around, there is no more walking outdoors.  The quality of the gym withered, however.  They refused to change my rate, which was actually much higher than they were offering new members.  They got rid of the juice bar, you guys!  They stopped filling their water and Powerade machines, so the one time I forgot my reusable bottle, I had to dash to the Dollar Store to pick some up.  Oh, and there was the time I found a USED SANITARY NAPKIN in one of the showers.  My blissful locker room respite RUINED, I made a decision.

I was going to quit the gym.

I’ve had a gym membership for the last 10 years.  Even when we spent weeks – or months – apart, I had always come back.

I couldn’t use the childcare until Ailie was three months anyway, I reasoned.  And I didn’t want to waste any more money on LA Fitness, when this shining beacon of amazingness existed just a few minutes away in the opposite direction.

So I quit.  It felt great!  The weather was starting to cool (85 degress this past Saturday after all), and I was half-marathon training anyway.  I DESPISE training on a treadmill.  I’d be outside anyway.

And it has been really, really wonderful, until this week.  Ailie is about to turn three months (!!!) and Mama wants her childcare.  To read on the bike!  To sweat out the stress of two babies, at least a few times per week.  I’d also like to be able to wake at 5:30 and get to the gym sans kids.  I really don’t enjoy working out outdoors in the dark, and I have learned I really hate workout DVDs.  I’ll do them for sure – as a mother with precious little time they are a necessary evil – but I just don’t get the proper inspiration in my living room.  I want to be surrounded by people enjoying a good workout.  I want group classes, not just me shouting at Jillian Michaels to SHUT UP ALREADY, STOP JUDGING ME.

So I’m looking in to my options this week.  I’m working with my budget to see what we can afford.

What about you?  How do you work out?  I’d love to hear some ideas for switching it up whilst I am gym-less.






2 thoughts on “The Gym and Me: A Love Story

  1. UGH! the Gym! I did the LA Fitness thing for a while, then I quit, then I joined a small gym and decided that i would just do Jillian Michales at home. What i realized is that as much as i hate going, its the only way to get me to work out. I just cannot be consistent when i dont have somwhere to work out! So i am trying to go back 3 days per week, then when this membership is up we are joining the Y. hopefully i can get back into a routine

    • Get after it, Al! I’m with you. I wish the amazing gym here wasn’t so pricey, but you get what you pay for, right? I need a place of escape. The living room just doesn’t cut it for me, not with the laundry needing folding, the dishes in the sink, etc.

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