One of the hardest things about moving is saying goodbye to the gym you’ve been going to for so long, especially if you’ve worked there, sweat there, and made the best friends of your life there.
Coming in close behind is finding a new gym. There are things that are absolutely necessary – spinning bikes to use while you rehab your broken legs, a range of dumbbell weights; things that you reallly love but could live without – plyo boxes, free group fitness classes; and things that you just stubbornly want and will be really angry if you can’t find – both large and small foam rollers, towels, a flat bench that doesn’t adjust so you can get creative and throw some ab exercises into an arms circuit.
With these things in mind, I have officially begun my search for a new gym! Previously, I haven’t had a lot of options: at school I just went to the campus gym. In high school, there was really only one gym in town that anyone went to. Now, I’m in a brand new city, don’t know anything about anything, and don’t have a student ID to prove who I am and get the discounted price at Tulane’s campus gym. Total bummer. So I’m on the prowl with many options to sift through. There are gyms with nothing but PT and group fit, or kick boxing and judo. It’s looking like my list might be hard to satisfy.
Today’s attempt was Uptown Athletic Club, which is coincidentally right near a very creative ice cream place, Creole Creamery, where I went with my dad and sister last night (champagne violette ice cream, anyone?). Ironic. The club is small. The cardio area consists of about six treadmills, two ellipticals, a recumbent bike, and a stair stepper. I was really hoping for an upright bike to get my cardio in, since my legs have been bothering me again and I wanted to take the weight off my tibias. No such luck. One thing I did really like about the club is that there is a lot of freedom with creating your own workout space: setting up circuits using all sorts of fun workout toys they have isn’t frowned upon. Sometimes I feel like when I do these sorts of things people raise an eyebrow and think what the heck does that girl think she’s doing?! But I didn’t feel that scrutiny here. Also, the membership fee is monthly and there is no initiation charge, which I LOVE. Gyms are not cults. You should not have to sell your soul in the form of your entire paycheck to start going there – these guys have the right idea. Two things that did bother me is that there were no foam rollers, and although there were clean towels for patrons to use as sweat rags, there were no paper towels or rags to wipe down machines with after use. Knowing how much sweat drips off my body when I work out, and having been the person whose job it was to clean the machines AFTER patrons were expected to clean them themselves, not requiring this of patrons is an issue for me. However, some of the positive points were really awesome.
I haven’t decided where I’m going to try tomorrow, but hopefully it has the same high points with a few less of the undesirable qualities.