I’ve never been one for the rat-race of the work-place — the nine to five daily drain of my energy, the water-cooler gossip fest, the monthly birthday celebration because “there are just too many people to celebrate everyone individually.” Man, at least in elementary school we were recognized as separate people and not as a mass unit. Anyway, I’ve always viewed part of this organized yet chaotic operation of society to be holding a gym membership, and even though I like the idea of a place where you can do cardio, weights, and take yoga classes at the same time (okay, I love the idea — it’s like a Runner’s Delight version of paradise), the industriousness of it always kept me at bay.
Until last week.
Last Wednesday, the boyfriend came home from work and said, “Let’s go check out something I’d like to get you for the winter holiday.” After asking him if we were going to a farm to check out a pony, going to check out Janis Joplin costume shop, and going to a karaoke bar to practice our couple’s singing skills, we arrived at our destination: the gym.
Some people might think this sounds kind of rude — to give your girlfriend a gym membership — sort of like giving your special lady friend a gift certificate to a salon in the exact amount of a lip wax. Beauty and health gifts don’t tend to go over too well with the gift’s recipient. However, I was intrigued and excited (and I did confirm that my boyfriend is incredibly happy by the way I look before I stepped inside) by the prospect, and so with hands held, we crossed the threshold and entered a fitness wonderland where larks were singing and rainbows were blooming.
Maybe there weren’t any larks, but there were tons of glorious gym-related squeaks and hums, and even disco lights. This gym was probably the nicest fitness arena I’ve seen outside of Club One in the Bay Area, but since I think you have to be a member of a secret society to get a membership there, this was fine with me. Here, the locker rooms were immaculate, and the towels are kept warm until you take them off the shelves. Any personal item you left at home can be offered to you (Q-tips, curling irons, deodorant, and probably a tiara if you smile pretty). Plus, each locker room is home to its own single sex spa. Private jacuzzi, anyone?
The gym itself offers the latest and greatest exercise equipment, including some really fancy-pants weight systems that the boyfriend knew about, rows and rows of those remarkable Life Fitness cardio machines that have televisions sunk right into each and every one of them, a saltedly chlorinated pool, squash and raquetball courts, several yoga studios, spin and dance classes that come with the cost of admission, and all equipment on hand to borrow for an basketball, volleyball or racqueted sport imaginable. The only way to make this gym better would be if they offered warm cookies as you leave. Seriously, this place dazzled me.
They even only offer filtered water to fill up your water bottle with. Which is so unnecessary and so strange and so over-the-top. And free parking (which in Orange County is like finding millions of tiny unicorns migrating overhead).
Boyfriend and I had a brief discussion after our tour of the facility, and we discussed the cost of my pool fees at the recreation center and the cost benefit analysis of switching, and we went in to negotiate a membership. Well, I let boyfriend take care of that — I just signed my name and thanked him profusely, generously, and repeatedly.
So I’m a convert (and probably a spoiled one at that). This certainly doesn’t mean any less running, but it hopefully means more pool time, more stationary bike time, and more working out with the boyfriend time. Oh, and when you come visit me, I can bring guests. Score!
Anyone else have gym memberships they love or hate?