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Thread: gym membership

  1. #1
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    gym membership

    It goes without saying that I prefer to be outside on the bike. That being said, I've been thinking about a gym membership for resistance training and also to keep in shape through the winter since I don't seem to get out as much.
    So, how many of you folks have them? Are they worth it? Anything I need to know about particular gyms? Bad experiences? Things I should be wary of?

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    I have a membership at the YMCA. I like that I can use them anywhere in the country whenever I travel. There is an early morning spinning class several days a week that is the most intense . . . many triathletes first thing in the morning which makes the class nicely competitive and a great workout.

    I would suggest you ask about the spinning classes. Especially great for cyclists in training for races.

    Also, yoga and pilates classes cost a lot outside of a gym, so if you find a gym with a good instructor it's a good place to experiment with class without the extra financial commitment.

    Gym memberships are great for rainy days and early dark mornings. No excuses.

    And, of course, the swimming pool. I swim laps almost everyday. That's what got me looking into gyms in the first place. The classes have been a nice discovery.

    Sandy

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    Twincities MN kuan's Avatar
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    On the back of some Total cereal boxes there are coupons for a free month trial membership at Bally's.

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    starting pistol means war YMCA's Avatar
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    one letter

    Y

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    more ape than man timmhaan's Avatar
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    take up running. no cost ('cept shoes), it's a good cold weather activity, keeps heart rate up, and doesn't take a lot of time.

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    Senior Member KeithA's Avatar
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    Yeah, running's great exercise, but it isn't resistance work.

    First off, I've belonged to and disliked gyms. But, many love em. My dislike stems from crowded conditions and wet, with sweat, conditions. These things might not exist at all gyms, so you'd have to check that out. Actually, that's the thing you should do. Get a guest pass and go at a time when you would normally be using the facility and see if it floats your boat. For instance, you being a cyclist, would want to perhaps try out some spin classes. If there are spin classes, are they included or is there an extra charge. How do you like the instructor. I've read that they can vary quite a bit in their approach.

    One last thing: I've heard from consumer advocates that there's a whole range of prices they charge customers and not just differences based on things like hours of attendance. In other words, the price is highly negotiable. They'll probably try to get top dollar from you, but find out how much others pay if at all possible.

    Would you be interested in building up some equipment for a home gym. I don't know if this would be feasible room/money wise, but it is the way I do it. Just a couple of pieces of equipment do the trick for me.
    Last edited by KeithA; 11-14-05 at 06:06 PM.

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    more ape than man timmhaan's Avatar
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    yeah - definitely go check out the gym at the times you're likely to be there. sometimes they get a little crazy around the time people get off work.

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    You need a new bike supcom's Avatar
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    Try to find a gym where you can pay month to month for a while until you decide that you are going to continue to use it. Fitness centers will want you to sign an extended contract. Most people use the gym regularly for a month or two, then slack off and quit going, yet are still obligated to pay until the contract expires.

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    The key word for me is "convenience". When we moved into our house, one of the first things we did was to get memberships at the gym (24 hour Fitness) that's right around the corner. It's about a 5min jog from my front door to theirs. Are there other, better gyms in the area? Yes. Would I use them half as much? No. Having it so close eliminates all excuses.

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    more ape than man timmhaan's Avatar
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    also check out the quailty of the bikes. i find newer stationary bikes pretty crappy to work out on. at dolphin fitness (i went to the lower east side location) they had old school bikes with a big weighted fly wheel on them, straps for your feet, and a geometry that felt very much like riding a bike. no electronics or anything, but it didn't matter. i actually enjoyed riding it and doing intervals.

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    Get a tour, ask questions, get a free week or a free month to try it out. Most gyms do this even if they don't advertise.

    Also, experiment with times. I started going after work and found it took an extra half hour to wait for machines, lots of stressful energy with people talking about work problems, having to pay for parking, people were sort of decked out with how they looked because it was after work, or they talked about the latest 'Oprah.' My first impressions would have turned me off to gyms in general.

    Going first thing when the gym opens changed all of this for me. No lines, no waiting, no paying for parking, people do their own thing and let you do your own thing. After a while, these people are most friendly because there are fewer and you become a 'regular' which encourages you to keep going with your workouts.

    Sandy

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    I'm hoping i'll be able to get a membership this winter... money wise. But I've always made sure I go to the gym in the off season. Last winter I joined the gym near where I live, it was very conveniently located but not a great gym. I was going to find another gym this winter, and there's another one pretty close by. However, I'm moving soon, and there's a gym within walking distance where I used to go. This one gets a lot of cyclists and has a training center for elite cyclists.
    You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. That's great...if you want to attract vermin.

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    I hate gyms, for many of the reasons mentioned above, but I did belong to one when I had my office in San Francisco, worked long days, and needed to work out somehow. I would walk to my gym a few blocks away, work out, get a bite to eat, and head home around 8-9pm. Totally de-stressed, and no traffic! It worked out fine for what I needed and I would do it again if I had to. That said, I prefer other means to stay in shape.

    I have a fairly flexible schedule now and can usually find time to bike or take a short run or hike during the day, which can be done here year round. I also exercise every morning for about 20-30 min with a simple routine and a few free weights. That's all it takes, and I much prefer this approach to a gym membership, but you gotta do what you gotta do. All cyclist should be thinking about ways to get some impact sports or resistance training to keep the bones strong as cycling and swmming won't do it.

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    Twincities MN kuan's Avatar
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    Fools all. I go to the gym to people watch. Some of the women are extremely Flex-a-ble! I swear they do it on purpose, lycra short shorts and all!

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    Sprockette wabbit's Avatar
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    well, if you live in san mateo it's easier to get out and ride all year round! I don't have that option... so in the winter it's the gym for me.
    You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. That's great...if you want to attract vermin.

  16. #16
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    Fitness 19 - they are in many western cities.

    $19 per month for me, $9 for my wife, month to month.

    Just new, excellent equipment - that's it - and that is all we want.

    No bacteria laden showers (a recent consumer survey showed huge amounts of bacteria in those showers).

    There is like a $75 signup fee, and if you work it right they will waive it.

    I have become close friends with the local owner. We attend bible study together, and I rode bicycles with him last year. About as honest and straight forward a person as you can get.

    If you want, you can hire a personal trainer per session.

    Generally open 5am to 10 pm during the week. less hours on weekends - like 6-6 on Sunday.

    Works for me.

    And you NEED resistance training for a lot of reasons, including the long-term prevention of osteoporosis, something "serious" bicyclers are particularly prone to get.

    I am always amazed when folks pooh-pooh resistance training. I guess they are just uninformed.
    Last edited by DnvrFox; 11-17-05 at 06:58 PM.

  17. #17
    Yo-
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    Yeah... get a gym for the resistance training. If you're just going to use the cardio machines, you might as well go outside and run.
    Fall down 7 times ... Get back up 8.

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    Senior Member KeithA's Avatar
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    Question: would doing squats be considered resistance training. Curious as pertains to osteoporosis.

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    Yo-
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    Quote Originally Posted by KeithA
    Question: would doing squats be considered resistance training. Curious as pertains to osteoporosis.

    Oh Yeah. That and dealifts are the kings of resistance training. Squats employ the most muscle parts and bones to perform 1 rep.
    Fall down 7 times ... Get back up 8.

  20. #20
    Senior Member KeithA's Avatar
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    Thanks, Yo. That made me believe I'm on track at least in that regard.

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    Senior Member wunder's Avatar
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    I just got a membership to the local YMCA here this past Tuesday...it's been really nasty out lately, so all outside riding has basically...stopped.

    - Spinning classes everyday of the week, morning, afternoon, lunchbreak...you name it. And surprisingly, out of the three times I've been there since I signed up, the freeweight room and machines are not crowded.

    This morning I got up and did the 7-7:45 spinninng class, then the 8-8:45 body toning class (rubber bands, dumbbells, body bar, lots of core strength excersizes.)

    I love the group stuff. It's all new to me, but it's so much fun and an awesome workout.

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    The 24 hour fitness here has spinning classes, a pool, and, of course, lots of resistance training options. It has a 90 day membership for $149 total which should carry me through most of the off season. I will still ride outside regularly but I want to do some serious cross-training and this is the best time of year to do it. I don't have to worry about being too tapped out from resistance training as I would during the regular season.
    I did have a Y membership but I was too busy riding to use my membership much during the regular season. The 24 hour super-sport club has more classes and more options for not that much more $.

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