Your gym - why?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 08, 2009 4:52 AM GMT
    Hey guys

    I have been a member at my gym for the past 15 years. It is run by a really sweet guy as a small business concern. Although straight, he has been a long time supporter of the local gay community, helping fund our events and being involved in many of our charities.

    The gym itself has everything you really need, although it doesn't have the bells and whistles that the big corporate gyms have. There is no lap pool, or sauna, or squash court, or solarium etc.

    The weight plates are probably thirty years old (Nautilus) but as far as I know, a 30lb plate from 1970 still weighs 30lbs.
    The dumb-bells likewise are old school, none of these color-coded plastic thingos.
    All the older equipment is very highly maintained, and everything works as it should, even if it isn't the newest or prettiest on the market.
    The cardio room has all the latest equipment like new treadmills and electronic rowing machines etc etc.

    The gym is in an old building, but he has kept it clean and fresh with splashes of paint and minor renovations as often as he can afford.

    The members are mostly long-serving. The owner knows everyone by name and is very friendly and helpful. He is always walking around, helping you out with your workout or just generally chatting about your day. Although he also uses his personal training to generate income, he will always help you out with little tips and general advice.

    A few years ago, I received a three month trial membership to one of the big, new corporate chain "Fitness Centre's" that had just opened in my town. The place was whiz-bang, with plasma's everywhere and space-age equipment. There was a cafe, a creche, a beauty salon and even a bar where you could get drunk with your workout mates after your session. icon_rolleyes.gif

    Although they had the best of everything, and all the equipment was brand spanking new, there was a very cold, clinical feel to the place. The staff ignored you unless you were swiping your electronic tag to sign up for the Spin class in cardio room 23, or were trying to purchase your personally embroidered workout towel with gym logo.
    There were so many people there at any one time that it was unlikely you would ever meet up with anyone you knew by name.

    And then there was the cost. The yearly membership fee was close to the GDP of a small African nation. They informed you that you would be put on a waiting list unless you were prepared to pay a further "joining fee" which would help you jump the queue. Classes were an additional cost. You were not permitted to refill your water bottle from any of the hand wash taps in the restrooms - if you needed to refill your water bottle, you could do so from the subterranean spring water taps installed at the counter, at a cost of $5 per 500ml.

    Needless to say, I never joined up with these pricks.
    I'll stick to my little, family style gym with it's friendly people and less than dazzling facilities. Needless to say, all I need to do is workout with some decent equipment - those who desire the cult of fitness royalty can go fuck themselves at said "Fitness Centre".
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    Mar 08, 2009 6:08 AM GMT
    Haha.. Wow! Fitness Centre sounds too ridiculous to be real. You actually have to pay extra to get drinking water?!?! icon_lol.gif

    Funny thing is, 24 Hour Fitness here in the states has different levels of clubs. From tiny little hole-in-the-wall clubs to pimped out high society clubs called "Ultra Sport". The Ultra Sport clubs are ridiculous too. I think most of them have putting greens, dry cleaning service, premium snack bar, oxygen therapy, tanning, a lounge of some sort, and other stuff that just screams of excess.

    I'm happy with my regular Super Sport membership. It allows me to workout at any other Super Sport location in the US. And since I signed up on the pre-paid plan years ago, I'm only paying like $20 a year for membership renewals now.
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    Mar 08, 2009 6:32 AM GMT
    I always have to laugh when I go to a gym and see the staff with their noses pointed high up in the sky, valet parking, botox lounges, oxygen this and that and a clientele with pursed lips and attitudes from hell....I run.....far, far, away.
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    Mar 08, 2009 2:49 PM GMT
    Cronker, like you, I'm at the gym to work out, not socialize. But the 24 Hour Fitness club I'm a member of does have all the bells and whistles, but no bar, dry cleaning, etc. to drive up the price. I don't have to pay a fortune for the membership either as I was able to join and pre-pay for two years at a ridiculously low rate that works out to what would be $12.50 a month. Because it has all the equipment and plenty of room to work out without having to wait for equipment even during peak hours, it was worth it. Plus I get to use the 24 Hour Fitness clubs across the states whenever I travel without having to pay an extra dime. So it was worth it to me. But if is was a snob club, that charged me additional for water or aerobic classes, there's no way I'd have joined.
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    Mar 08, 2009 2:56 PM GMT
    It meets all the basic needs of a gym at a reasonable rate and is conveniently located.
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    Mar 08, 2009 3:00 PM GMT
    Yep, I hear ya Scottish.

    As far as the fee goes at my little gym, it works out to be about $40 per month (in AUD$), which works out at about $25 per month in US$

    Our clever nice gym guy owner has also been very resourceful and made a network across Australia with other small gyms so that we members can use affiliated gyms across the country whenever we travel. OK, so it's not a "chain", but we still get to workout wherever we are in Australia.

    By the way, if you want to check out the gym I am raving about, here is the link:

    www.citygymsa.com

    The owner is Shayne, and the rest of the crew are cool people too.
    icon_biggrin.gif

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 08, 2009 3:32 PM GMT
    xrichx saidHaha.. Wow! Fitness Centre sounds too ridiculous to be real. You actually have to pay extra to get drinking water?!?! icon_lol.gif

    Funny thing is, 24 Hour Fitness here in the states has different levels of clubs. From tiny little hole-in-the-wall clubs to pimped out high society clubs called "Ultra Sport". The Ultra Sport clubs are ridiculous too. I think most of them have putting greens, dry cleaning service, premium snack bar, oxygen therapy, tanning, a lounge of some sort, and other stuff that just screams of excess.

    I'm happy with my regular Super Sport membership. It allows me to workout at any other Super Sport location in the US. And since I signed up on the pre-paid plan years ago, I'm only paying like $20 a year for membership renewals now.


    That's exactly my membership as well. I'm paid up for the next 3 years.
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    Mar 08, 2009 3:37 PM GMT
    Unfortunately it is the only gym in town..next closet gym is 50 miles a wayicon_cry.gif
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    Mar 08, 2009 3:38 PM GMT
    I workout at the Green Bay YMCA for the simple reason I am a personal trainer for the Y and get a free membership. The Y that I work at is a suburban branch (Howard) with lots of families and kids, so I personally prefer to workout for myself at the Downtown Y in Green Bay which has at least some gay guys.
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    Mar 08, 2009 4:22 PM GMT
    I chose my gym originally as it had an arrangement with the pilates studio I go to (I was going pilates seriously before I ever started lifting). It´s in a hotel and has very few people going to it. The machines and equipment are not amazing, but they have pretty much everything I need: barbells, dumbbells, spinning bikes, and the normal machines (a better squat cage and leg press would be nice as would more heavy dumbbells). It´s almost always quiet and the staff are knowledgeable and bored so you get as much help as you ask for. I also chose it as it´s not a gay gym in any shape. Getting stared at in the changing room is quite flattering as a one off, but if it were a regular part of my experience I´d get fed up.

    My membership recently expired and so I looked at some of the “proper” gyms. They had better equipment, but nothing else, and in one (the gayest one) I didn´t even make it past the first room without guys blatantly checking me out (ok I was wearing a very tight T shirt…but I like it.) I want to be able to relax at the gym, not have to deal with that, and a very high percentage of the guys who work out here are gay. So, long story short, I ended back at the place I started. I just have to make some 35lb dumbbells as they don´t have them (they have the weights and the handles, but not the 35s made up).

    It´s also 15 minutes walk away through a park, which is very nice…
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    Mar 08, 2009 5:24 PM GMT
    I choose to join a new gym this past December because it's:

    - got the equipment I wanted to use
    - relatively inexpensive with the plan I contracted
    - very close to my home, can bike or even walk if I choose
    - not crowded during the hours I use it
    - got a steamroom, with a sauna coming next
    - owned by a gay couple I know
    - mostly male and gay
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    Mar 08, 2009 5:35 PM GMT
    Good for you Cronker and good for that small business owner that serves the public with more heart than any of these newer, clinical places could ever!