Friday, September 30, 2005

Hatch Rant - Gyms

Gyms suck.

I feel like I'm ready to start adding resistance training to my current regimen, and my employer offers to reimburse about 20 bucks a month for gym membership. Now I know the YMCA is going to charge me $54.00 a month. It's on their web site. I could probably get it down a little bit if I didn't get the city-wide membership, but from my previous Y experience, it's nice to go to some of the different facilities around town because they have different equipment, classes, and such.

There's a brand new Gold's Gym right next to my local YMCA, and there's a World Gym in Mt. Juliet that's on the way to my daughter's school. So at lunch today I decided to call them to see if their rates were comparable or hopefully even less than the YMCA.

I call World Gym first and spend 5 minutes hemming and hawing with the guy on the phone. First he tells me there's "about 30 different payment options depending on what you want." I tell him that's fine, but just to get a baseline what's the price for a single membership per month if I sign up for a year? He goes into more doublespeak before finally saying he can't really give out rates over the phone, I'd have to come in for the tour. I got mad at this point and said "Well why the hell didn't you say that in the first place when I told you I wanted to find out some rates?" Then I hung up.

Then I called Gold's Gym. The guy there was a little more helpful, but he still went through a whole canned sales pitch and seemed determined to try and get me into the gym today. I told him there was no way I could come in today, so he starts telling me that it's the end of the month and the rates are going up tomorrow. If I came in today he could probably sign me up for somewhere around $39 to $49 a month, but tomorrow it would probably be around $65. I'm pretty sure this is probably complete BS, and I'll find out when I call back next week and let all my readers know.

During each phone call, I felt similar to the way I feel when I'm in a car dealership. What I really want is for someone to open the equivalent of a Carmax gym and just tell me what the fricking rate is every month. Is that too much to ask?

So at this point I'm going to use the old garage weight set and maybe sign up for the YMCA membership again in a month or so. At least they have a nice large heated indoor pool so I can swim some laps, which Gold's and World Gym don't have. It won't be as nice as the 5 million dollar Gold's gym, but I guess I can do without the plasma monitors on the treadmills and cycles.


TheHeffer said...

Garage/Basement. After the intial cost of a simple set of free weights - FREE OF CHARGE. And no doublespeak.

GateTree said...

Those Gyms are almost always a ripoff, they had yearly contracts before there even were cellphones. In your situation a couple of 15 and 20 pound dumbells and a simple bench will get you going. In the long run you will want more weight & want to work to failure & periodize your sets, but to start with: do a dumbbell exercise for 2 sets of 10 for chest, shoulder, back, bicep, tricep and some lunges & crunches & you'll get what you need. Walking & weightlifting will do it.
At our size & age however, swimming is the best possible exercise, because it is aerobic and also involves resistance, but no joint/back stress & the Y is more community-oriented & less ripoff oriented than Gyms. I'd go pool if not simply home. (Sorry, I got that goofy masters for something).

HatchWife said...

Fricking? Did Victoria teach you that word?

Paul said...

I agree with the swimming. Of course, once the baby arrives, you have an instant weight set. I'm constantly doing Veronica Curls, benches, etc. The best part is, the resistance is constantly going up.