Attempt to join a gym

(This is a little adventure I went on about 6 months ago, enjoy).

Ok, theoretically this should be really easy right?

Step 1-Locate the nearest gym
Step 2-Enquire about cost, classes and machines
Step 3-Sign up for any promotional offers e.g. Free trials
Step 4-Attend a class and see if it's 'a fit'
Step 5-Make some comparisons between different gyms
Step 6-Chose one and sign up
Step 7-Get training!!!

Here’s how it went for me…

Step 1-Locate the nearest gym

LA fitness, less than 2 miles away.  The best part of this club is that it is UK wide, so whilst I’m travelling around working in  lots of different places, I can still nip into a gym right?

Step 2+3 Enquire about cost, classes and machines + Sign up for any promotional offers e.g. Free trials

Turns out after the 3 day free pass, it costs a lot of money per month to facilitate the whole ‘UK wide’ element.  And given that 6 months of this year I will be out of the country (on no salary), I don’t think I could really justify the cost.  Maybe I’ll just go for the £35 local gym only option…

Step 4-Attend a class and see if it’s ‘a fit’

So actually, this went reasonably well.  I joined many a class from Body Pump to Yoga to Spin Class.  Spin Class was actually the funniest.  Let me tell you why.

Cue Spin Class:

Complete gym rookie rocks up in the only ‘sports gear’ she has worn since Sixth Form mandatory games on Wednesday afternoon and locates bike nearest to exit (you know, in case there is some sort of emergency that requires me to slink away).  There are not one, not two but THREE burly rugger buggers in the back row already threatening and intimidating me with their sheer size.  So I park myself next to what I think is a kindly old man.  Wrong.  I mean don’t get me wrong, he was definitely old and kindly, but do not make the mistake of thinking this man is going to be weaker than you and that you may have to perform CPR at any minute.  No, his little finger was probably fitter than my whole body put together, twice.

It soon became obvious I had never sat on a bike in my life (or you know, since my little pink one that I rode when I was 8) and had certainly never sat on a stationary one.  Cue kindly old man:

‘First time?’

‘Yeah, is it that obvious?’

‘Here let me help you.’

‘Aww thanks…’

He shows me how to adjust the seat, turns the little dial to the ‘smiley face’ position and instructs me to keep it on this at all costs.  When the instructor goes up a gear, turn it to a ‘sad face’ but don’t go any higher than that.

Wow, this guy is SO KIND!  Smiley face, sad face.  How hard can that be?

Turns out, pretty hard.  Although, I must have been doing something right as throughout the ENTIRE session all I could hear from my left side was, ‘Well done’, ‘Keep going!‘, ‘Why don’t you turn the dial up a little‘.  When he started telling me to ‘cycle in time to the music‘ I sort of wondered whether I reminded him of his grand daughter or something, or whether Northern Irish old men were just the friendly sort of type.  Actually, knowing Northern Ireland, it was probably the latter.  Still, my whole ‘be invisible and lie low’ mantra was going spectacularly badly as he was definitely drawing a lot of attention to me.  I’m pretty sure I heard rugger bugger one, two and three snigger their way through the latter half of that class.

Post class however I was riding on that adrenaline rush of, ‘Yeah I totally nailed that!‘ and foolishly agreed to join in the express 10 minute work out straight after.  Now, if you think doing push ups, sit ups, crunches and all sorts in the presence of 3 grown men (plus the kindly old man) is in the least bit entertaining I can assure you it’s not.  Well, unless you are watching from the outside at tiny me attempting to keep up with their macho man antics then no, it is not entertaining.  Needless to say, I gave up my crunches, squats, push ups etc much earlier than they did and left never to return again.

I think I’ll stick to the outdoor running eh?  Free, self determined, no one to please but my own personal goals and ambitions.

Still, he was the craziest old man ever, and a total machine.  Turns out he ran the Dublin Marathon and couldn’t get enough of my whole ‘I’m trekking to Everest Base Camp cause I’m a crazy mentalist’ thing.  Too bad I wasn’t in the mood for a personal trainer, he probably would have been great!


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