Before I start this post I just want to point out how cheap my sexy Nike trainers were… £24 reduced from £80… Thank you Gunwharf Quays and your outlet shops, you babe.
Anyway, I thought I’d do a little post about my gym. I enjoy working out, I like swimming and I love pilates/yoga, but I am, at heart, quite a lazy person. In reality I would probably rather sit on the sofa, eating crisps and drinking coffee, than walk to a gym and spend half an hour on a treadmill. For me it’s not the type of exercise I do, it’s where I do it. I’ve been a member of 4 gyms in my life and my current one is hands down my favourite. We currently attend David Lloyd in Woking and it’s honestly amazing. When we first moved here I joined the local leisure centre. It probably didn’t help I’d come from Surrey Sports Park (the most hi-tech gym, used by actual athletes, just to make you feel unfit) and then a Nuffield gym before that, both exceptionally nice gyms with the fees to go along with it. I hate to say it but you really do get what you pay for. I hated the leisure centre. I can’t even really explain why, I just really didn’t like it when I was there. Whereas now, I actively want to go to the gym. We go swimming every night and today I spent two hours in the gym working out… Two. Hours. Admittedly mainly because I was putting off doing uni work, but y’know… Healthy life & body and all that… I am no athlete. I still hate running. But if a gym can get me to walk 25 mins in humid heat, then stay there for 2 hours actually doing a workout, it must be doing something right…
- Service as you like it…
I am an absolute sucker for service. Maybe it’s from years of working in retail but for me there’s nothing nicer than good customer service. When you walk in the door you get greeted with a smile and a “hello!”, when you go into the gym there’s always fitness coaches around to assist if you get stuck and everyone is really nice. It honestly makes a difference.
2. Hi-Tech gym, bro.
So it sounds really silly, but I love a good bit of hi-tech gym equipment. I like that I can watch Big Bang Theory (or Jeremy Kyle…) whilst on the bike, or track exactly how many calories I’m burning. They’ve just upgraded the gym so that it’s essentially exactly the same as the one at Surrey Sports Park, with a strange treadmill that you make move (God, I’m literally clueless…) and a Synrgy360 which has all sorts of things on it. Yeah, so I’ve no idea how to use any of it but it all looks and sounds great.
3. A good fitness guide.
When we joined the first thing they did was get us booked in for a “personal fitness training session” aka a induction. I hate inductions. Every single induction I have had has been a complete waste of time. Generally they either consist of – a) showing you round the gym and going “there you go, have fun!” or b) giving you a fitness routine based on random facts you’ve told them and then you maybe doing it for a week and never doing it again. However, this “personal fitness session” was amazing. My coach was lovely and hilarious. She was genuinely interested and had similar views to me in regards to weight and that the number shouldn’t matter (seeing it still makes me miserable but I’m getting there…). Instead I told her I wanted to get fit and work on weights. So we did exactly that. She gave me a short, simple cardio routine that was based on what I had already done and was good at, then introduced me to more free weights so that I can comfortably go in the weights area, stare down the bulky men and lift them barbells. So. Good.
4. Pilates, yoga & availability…
I absolutely love pilates/yoga/bodybalance classes. I find them a great way to workout but also to introduce mindfulness and get rid of any stress. What I hate is when places claim to do lots of these sorts of classes and then don’t. There are at least 3 pilates classes a day. THREE. I don’t even know what to do with myself. No matter what my work/life/uni schedule, I can always fit in at least one class a week and ultimately that’s all I want out of life.
5. Peace & Quiet.
Sometimes, when Pete and I go swimming in the evening, we will be the only ones in the pool. I cannot even explain how nice that is. We have a lane each, can swim to our hearts contents and still chat every now and then when I get tired and decide to float and do starfishes (it happens more than I care to admit…). We’ll generally be the only ones in the sauna and steam room too. It means we can both unwind in peace and quiet without having to annoy other people with our chatter. When I went to the gym today there were 10 other people in there. I counted.
I haven’t even got onto the nice café, the changing rooms that have Molton Brown… The list is endless. We pay quite a lot of money, but to be honest, it gets me to go. Knowing how much we pay and how bloody nice it is when I do go, makes me want to go to the gym. So much so when I couldn’t go for two weeks because I’d had surgery I felt genuinely miserable and then ecstatic when I finally went back. And any gym that can achieve that deserves a medal in my book.