Surely there’s a side of sweetness with my bitterness?

Change is hard, right? If you’ve gotten into a routine that’s comfortable, moving out of it feels like work with no reward. If a perfect slice of key lime pie magically appeared every time I put work into doing something good for myself that would be fantastic incentive to change. It’d also create a stack of new problems, but let’s ignore that for now. Sheesh, I’ve got the imagination to conjure a phantasmal pie, but I can’t conceive of it being nutritionally dense? Some things are beyond suspension of disbelief. In any case I’m sneaking candy into my maw as I type this, so clearly I’m not above personal bribery. Change though, is inevitable and often unavoidable. In this case, certain corporate decisions are gonna throw my routine out of whack and I want to be prepared for that inevitability.

In short, I need to find a new gym. It sucks and there’s nothing more to that. The goals I have require either a huge amount of self discipline (I shouldn’t have to remind you of the candy in front of me right now) or a larger financial investment than I’m interested in throwing down. To help make the choice, I guess I need to jot down what exactly I’m looking for.

  • High intensity workouts.
  • Strength training.
  • Guided technique coaching.
  • Multiple training styles, including lifting/boxing/calesthenics/gymnastics.
  • Enough variety to stop being bored.
  • Convenience of location.
  • A price tag that seems sane.

The last two are the tricky ones. Seeing as my job is currently located in the centre of town, the location thing is easy. For the last while I’ve been able to fit my fitness into my workday. Escaping at lunch time to get it out of the way is an amazing way to keep my evenings free and kick my afternoon lull in the arse. Seeing as there’s nowhere truly close to home (15 minutes walk is as close as it gets), getting somewhere around work is the best option.

Crossfit fulfilled my goals, but boy was it expensive. Post tax I was dishing out around $170 per month. That’s an insane investment of over $2000 per year on fitness. It gave me my high intensity workouts with strength training. There was variety and technique coaching, the location was convenient enough. That cost though? It also tore my evenings to shit, meaning I couldn’t get anywhere until 9pm plus. I know you can’t have it all, but for $2000 or so a year I wanted more.

The glaring option is to go for a corporate Goodlife membership and not look back. Through the company I could get a year’s membership for around $450 (tax inclusive). That’s around $40 per month and is a decent solution. Whichever office I end up at, there are gyms close by. A big gym like this though? It’d have to be hugely self-directed. I don’t know if I’m comfortable training with a partner or not, which means I’d be doing my own lifting workouts based off online templates. It sounds kind of boring and difficult for motivation purposes, but the potential development is there. There’s always the option to get back into Les Mills classes (which I did for eight or so years back home), but I don’t know if that kind of group workout really meets my needs any more. The bodyattack and bodycombat classes are good for cardio and I could always chain a few together. Then again, that’s my evening gone, so bully to that.

What are my other options? Find a boxing gym? I love the technique, but I hate getting in the ring. Go back to self-directed calisthenics? It does feel like a bummer to train on my own in an isolated space. It’s a shitty thing to do throughout winter. Join the local community centre? It did have a pool, but the hours/quality/quantity of equipment were rather limiting. Considering the great deal I was getting, it feels a bummer to backslide so much.

Still, change is change and with that comes opportunity. Is there something I’m not thinking of? Something close enough to home/work that gives me the versatility and intensity that I need at a cost I can stomach? Can’t I figure out a contra deal where I write periodically in exchange for my membership?

Will the magical key lime pie genie offer up a slice for that sweet idea?

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2 responses to “Surely there’s a side of sweetness with my bitterness?

  1. If you enjoy boxing, you should look into “Fight Classes” that go over technique without any contact – you just use a bag. You’ll still be able to get into “fighter shape” without having to actually fight. Therefore, no ring time.

    • I’ve done a bunch of these and I love ’em. It’s pretty gratifying to feel the marked difference in power as your technique improves. I’d love to find them in Toronto.

      Also that chain of muscles in your back that don’t get activated by any other kind of fitness. They definitely let you know just how hard you’ve worked.

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