This weekend was all about getting back to basics on the blog. In my last post, I talked about food, so now it’s time to talk about exercise.
I’m on a nice little roll with exercise: I’ve worked out the past 8 days in a row, and 5 of those workouts had a significant focus on weights. On Saturday, Richard Simmons didn’t teach his normal class (because he was booked to teach a giant class at the AARP convention), and I wanted to do something different than go to my regular gym.
So I went with my friend Emily to her gym, instead! It was a brand-spankin’-new 24 Hour Fitness located less than 10 minutes from my house. It’s on a main road called Lankershim, although the entrance is in an alley off a sidestreet:
I had printed a free 3-day pass off the internet, and got a tour from an employee named Chris. It’s a huge gym. It might be the biggest gym I’ve ever been in. The space used to be a huge grocery store that shut its doors less than 2 years after opening (I’m not surprised that people didn’t flock to a supermarket accessed from an alley), and 24 Hour Fitness gutted the space, added a second floor, and turned it into a ginormous beautiful gym. Here’s the weights section:
The cardio section on the second floor, and there’s tons of machines: around 20 ellipticals, 30 treadmills, 10 stairmasters, 20 Adaptive Motion Trainers (which I love!) and 15 or so bikes. Some of their treadmills are super fancy and can incline up to 30 degrees (treadmill standard is 15 degrees):
Underneath the cardio area is… ta-da! A pool!
The gym opened its doors about two months ago, and everything is new, clean, bright, and spacious. Great locker rooms. Towel service. Full-sized basketball court. It’s a great gym.
I started my workout with a warm-up on one of the fancy treadmills, and over the course of 6 minutes, I ramped up the incline to 30 degrees. That is not easy, my friends. For the last minute, I set the incline at -3 degrees, because you can also set the treadmill to walk downhill, too!
Then I moved downstairs to the weights area, and spend 30 minutes lifting weights. Their machines were different (newer, fancier) than the ones at my gym, and there were a couple that didn’t quite feel right to me, but I got a good workout in.
Finally, back up to cardio, where I did 22 minutes on the Adaptive Motion Trainer. If you’ve never been on an AMT before, you are missing out! I first tried one last year in Colorado, and in my blog post about it, I described it like this:
It kinda looked like an elliptical, but different. I was curious, so I jumped on. It was tough to figure out, and then it was a blast. You move your feet in a circular motion, like an elliptical, but you can vary how long your stride it – you can keep it nearly vertical, mimicking the motion of a StairMaster, use it like an elliptical, or stretch your stride out so it’s like you’re making long bounding leaps.
I’d wanna come here all the time, except for one thing: it costs more than twice as much a month as my current, no-frills strip mall gym. My gym is a dump compared to this 24 Hour Fitness, but my gym has done me just fine over the past few years. And unfortunately, I can’t afford to join another gym right now.
I think my favorite part of the whole day was something that Emily said. Let me provide a little backstory first: A few years ago, I went with Emily to the gym she went to at the time and got a guest pass, and during the week that followed, I got a few follow-up calls from staffers interested if I wanted to become a member (which I didn’t). On Saturday, anticipating another week of me getting calls, Emily said: “I have an idea that will make them stop calling. The first time they call, tell them you’ve been in a horrible accident, and you had to have your leg amputated, and so you’re not interested in a gym membership at this time. They’ll feel so awkward that they’ll never call again!“
On Sunday, I had plans to go for a run. I thought about waking up early and hitting the gym to do some weights, but that never happened. The run happened, though! It was with my cousins Aaron and Macrae – I spent the afternoon hanging out with the family in the suburbs, and we celebrated Macrae’s birthday.
While I’ve done a little running on the treadmill in recent weeks, I haven’t gone for an actual run in about a month, since the last time I went running with Aaron (read about it at the end of this post). Like last time, we headed up the street to Aaron’s school, where Aaron practices all the time (he’s on his school’s cross-country and track teams). Like last time, Aaron left me in his dust within minutes. So did Macrae. Like last time, I found my own routes through the high school campus – around the many buildings, up and down every row in the student parking lot, up and down the rows in the courtyard pavilion. Unlike last time, I went a whole 48 minutes without stopping! Last time I ran 35 minutes. Like last time, I have no idea how far I ran, so I can’t update my running chart, which I just realized has not been updated since June. Yikes. I should do something about that!
Two good workouts in two days?
Keep it up, David!