The Background:

I finally did it. I joined a gym. Yep, I conformed to everyone and their mothers’ New Year’s Resolutions to look good and feel good in 2016.

I typically don’t make New Year’s Resolutions. I’m pretty sure it’s because I have tried in the past and always feel discouraged when I fail literally three days after declaring these “new year, new me” decisions. Alas, I think my resolution this year is to not make resolutions and save myself from a serious blow to my self-esteem.

So yeah, I joined a gym. However, let me tell you that this commitment is no joke. On January 31st, 2016, I signed my life away to this establishment for two years. That’s 730 days, if you’re wondering. And since I live in one of the most expensive suburbs of San Francisco, this gym costs me EIGHTY dollars a month. Please save me some sanity and do not do the math on that. I warned you that it was no joke, didn’t I?

For this amount of money, you best believe I am busting my butt every time I walk through those doors. As a college student that eats far too many boxes of Annie’s macaroni a month (and perhaps the reason I got a gym membership), I cannot afford to just throw my money around.

Allow me to validate my ridiculous commitment for a second; the place is pretty cool. They give you free towels, have the nicest bathroom I think I have ever walked into, provide fruit infused water at the check-in counter and have really attractive employees. But the best part of this gym is this: it’s practically full of wealthy retired people. Why is this the best part of the gym, you ask? I used to attend UFC gym, and never went because I felt super weak lifting my five pounders with all the meathead heavy lifters. Insanely lame, I am aware. But now, I lift my five pounders with confidence, feeling like the Hulk among all of the Rossmoor residents. So basically, who’s the real winner here?

In the last seven days, I have attended four different classes. Here are my breakdowns of each of the classes I have taken.

Spin ClassAKA the most sweat I have ever secreted in my lifetime

This class is absolutely insane. To you people that take these classes more than once per month – HOW?! I thought my heart was going to explode out of my chest in the beginning phase of the class, what the teacher declared as “the warm-up.” I remember looking at the clock when I felt like giving up and realizing that we had been going for SIX minutes. I peered to my left and saw a woman likely in her sixties pedaling harder than me, which made me both sad and extremely competitive at the same time. When the class was finally over and I finished, I felt an absurd amount of accomplishment that will last me a good month (or year…)  until my next class. This is an especially great choice if you’re trying to tone your thighs and/or want your butt to be sore for five days. Did I mention how bruised I was from that bike seat?

Barre ClassAKA not your typical ballet class

Barre has grown to be pretty popular around the Bay Area recently. I have driven past multiple barre studios, always curious to see how exactly one tones their body doing ballet. Well let me tell you that this is no preschool ballet class. I discovered muscles in my legs that I did not know existed previous to this particular day. The smile coming from the petite woman leading the class expressed concern and she looked as though she sympathized as my legs quivered in first position. Apparently, it tones your glutes really well, so I’d go back.

“Gentle” YogaAKA I thought this was supposed to be relaxing

By the instructor’s first comments about grabbing a blanket from the back, I thought we would just lie in savasana for the hour and reflect on our lives. I took a yoga class back in community college, so I was not a beginner to this practice (thank goodness.) Well this was a whole new experience. My mat was sandwiched between two older women around their seventies. My twenty-year-old body was feeling pretty confident I could keep up with them until we started doing planks for a straight five minutes. I had some flashbacks to the barre class I attended as my whole body shook and begged for me to get out of that dreaded pose I was putting it through. Other than that challenging first few minutes, I thought it was pretty boring and felt myself thinking about sandwiches for more than half of the amount of time I was in there. The best part of this class was the savasana with the blankets. I think I’m going to submit a request for my gym to start a “Savasana Yoga Class” – just this pose, for the entire hour. Does this currently exist anywhere? If it does, sign me up.

Extreme Interval AKA I came into this knowing I may die

I actually arrived to this class a few minutes late so I jumped right into burpees of all exercises. Having not done these for like six years, I was pleasantly surprised that I could still force my body into this motion semi-smoothly. We then moved into intense stations that included push-ups, TRX bands, free weights, abs and my favorite of all, the punching bag. I was sure I was Ronda Rousey in those few moments and may have considered being an UFC fighter for a hot second (I say hot second because I then had flashbacks to when I worked out at the UFC gym with my five pounders.) Anyway, I left that class burning over 800 calories according to my FitBit, and am sore literally two days later. Best. Class. Ever. Highly recommend.

Final thoughts:

I love my overpriced gym. I am one of those slightly addicted gym rats now, and super stoked to be spending nearly two grand on a membership for the next two years. (Alright, maybe definitely not that last statement) Are you going through a breakup? Are you bored? Annoyed with your boss? Hate your job? Join a gym. It will solve most above problems and you will come out with results. If you don’t, you’re not doing it right. Get out of that yoga class and into an interval class, and you’ll see exactly what I mean. Bonus points if you find a gym that is actually in your price range, negative points if you share with me your lower monthly rate. Now get off the computer and into those gym doors, the cute desk attendants are waiting for you.

Daily Burn

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