Starting from scratch in an elite fitness-blog-world full of expensive gear, and Personal Records she couldn't beat with a car.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Apparently it's bandwagon week!

As I've mentioned a few times over the last week or so I've been contemplating a gym membership with Retro Fitness as there is one within walking distance of my place and the cost is actually within my budget.

I have been mooning around for a little while, asking my friends what they knew about Retro Fitness, figuring out whether we'd be a good match, stalking it on Facebook, writing our names together in the inside of my English notebook to see how they look together... you know, the usual.

I finally screwed up my courage Wednesday and formally introduced myself (I had stopped in once before but I basically took a flyer and ran away). It took a bit of working up to because I'm kind of a wuss about new situations, but I've found over the last few years that smiling and admitting cheerfully that you have not the first clue what you're doing gets you WAY farther than silently toughing it out or being too scared to try in the first place.

I had printed out a guest pass for the occasion, but I was working with limited time so instead of using that pass to work out I got a bit of a tour and eventually ended up talking with their staff personal trainer. While the young woman at the desk was a) clearly not used to giving overview tours and b) nearly inaudible over the din of the machines, I still managed to get a general idea of the place. It was clean, spacious, and there were a LOT of cardio machines peppered in throughout the place (bonus, they have a darkened theater where they have cardio machines and play movies) and they have Zumba starting soon (also spinning classes, but that's not an interest of mine).

It's pretty stripped down, but I don't use public pools (eeeeeeew) and for the cost of dinner at a Long Island diner per month I'm not sure how much more one can reasonably expect.

David Barton Gym in Bellevue WA - it's only nearly 10x the cost! Click image for more info.
The Personal Trainer (Garrett of EFT Group, which is a company Retro Fitness contracts to do their Personal Training ) was very pleasant and attentive, and seemed mildly confused that I wasn't looking to lose a specific number of pounds or focus on a specific body part. I think my body is at a very good baseline shape right now and so I'm just looking to tighten things up.

I set up a free Personal Trainer session for Friday at 5pm so that will be the final test, but I'm pretty positive about the whole thing. If I do sign up it will be during Thanksgiving weekend as they have a special 11-23 to 11-26 for no processing or enrollment fees.

I was so excited I bought Sport Wash!*

I figure if I have to see the same people day after day without immediately running away the least I can do is make sure my workout clothes are as non-funky as I can get them.

*(also a workout towel, some longish shorts, a padlock, and a new water bottle)

On a completely separate note: Gigi of Runnning On Candy (the original running Cheerleader) strikes again. She got an email from that they were offering a beginners Half Marathon training program for free and forwarded it along to me (Active hates me and won't fix my account so that I can update my information or get emails or anything useful like that) and somehow convinced me along the way to sign up for the Diva Half Marathon in October 2013?!?!?

Currently I have the training set to start in July but I suspect I'll move it earlier as I am looking for something fresh to do and having some sort of solid schedule for over the winter at the gym will probably be helpful.

I signed up for an opportunity to earn a free race entry from Instead Softcups (more on that later) so I think I'm going to use that for this race.

Oh, I'm also seriously considering the NYS Parks Winter Run Series as they actually start at what I consider to be a reasonable time on a Sunday, though I'm sure when I'm standing out in the wind in Tech fabric in the middle of January I will have a different opinion about what sorts of activities can be called reasonable.

So yeah, on the bandwagon for a couple of things this winter and I can't say I'm particularly unhappy with that.


  1. I felt the same way when I walked into my gym. I basically walked in and went right to the treadmills and didn't move from them until I saw some friends using other pieces of equipment, but I still haven't used any of the circuit or free weights!

    1. Happily I figured out BEFORE starting that I know next to nothing about treadmills and my usual M.O. of "fake it till I make it" was almost certainly going to result in deep mortification and skinned palms. *laughs*

      I'm pretty new to the area so I only know one person who goes to that gym (my upstairs neighbor) and Brian is a giant, scary looking, MMA fighty sort. I don't see him being a machines guy.

  2. I must admit I do live being a cheerleader and getting people to join me the wild and crazy world of races LMAO! If for no other reason then I am not alone at said races :)

    After you join the gym I want to hear how you like it as I have a Retro by me and I really would like a gym to go to that I will actually go to....

    1. I'm just glad you do it.

      As much as I may wrinkle my nose at the 8:30 runs I do like that you still try (sometimes you even succeed!)

    2. So far it was pretty enjoyable though I feel bad that the trainer went so deep into my potential training possibilities pretty much entirely for naught.

      The elliptical and the assisted pull-up machine were my favorites and the TRX training ( ) was cool but it made me feel pretty spastic and I could see why having a trainer would be better for that.

  3. When I first started going to the gym I also got a personal trainer package. It made it much easier to feel comfortable with all of the equipment and working out the level of fitness you're at. Plus they tend to give you great ideas for different types of exercises so your workout doesn't get boring.

    Once you start going it'll feel just like any other place you go regularly =)

    1. The trainer session was neat and I'm glad I did it but I found out today that their biggest deal of the year is the Black Friday special which comes out to a mandatory year signup with a minimum of one session a week.

      The DISCOUNTED price comes to just over a grand (while membership for the entire rest of the gym is only $240) and the internet indicates that their training sessions are even harder to cancel than their memberships. That would be out of my reach even without needing a new car and compounding Holidays with impending vet bill doom.

      So clearly the answer is that The Unicorn needs to get on the ball with this personal training idea.

      On a more serious note, have you ever seen ? It's a pretty good overall health and lifestyle page but they have this workout of the day thing I've been mostly ignoring but which may be pretty handy

  4. Ok that gym sounds awesome! Wish we had one down here like that!