Health Clubs: Why I Hate Them

I have joined a number of health clubs over the years. Like anything that I’ve used out of necessity (at the given time), I’ve grown to hate these places.

What’s my beef with them? I expect service and cleanliness, yet I realize I want too much. That’s a common theme with almost everything for me: I pay more, I still receive less.

1. Too expensive – I’d like a pay-as-you-go place. Haven’t found one yet. I know as a business model it wouldn’t work for most health clubs, but I’m sure they can think of something innovative to make it work.

2. Filthy – I have borderline germaphobia. After I wash my hands in the ladies restroom, I take fresh paper and use it to open the doors. I even grab the paper first before I wash my hands. I use the paper towel to turn on / off the faucet.

I loathed using the health clubs’ showers. I examine the tiles and remember every stain. I can tell you: they NEVER clean these places. Don’t even get me started describing my nausea when my bare feet touches the floor.

3. Those “strange” women – Look, your lifestyle is your lifestyle. Not everyone goes to the gym for same sex hookups. Take that nonsense somewhere else, like those bars or clubs catering to your special needs.

4. Chatterboxes – I understand, some people go to health clubs to widen their social circle, make new friends, network, etc. I’m not one of them. I am downright anti-social. It’s bad enough the place makes my skin crawl, staying longer than necessary to talk doesn’t work for me.

5. Sweaty Exercise Machines – Yeah, we see the posted signs about wiping up after yourself. How different is a health club from a toilet? Does anyone every really clean up after oneself in the public restrooms? (I have my doubts that they are scrupulously clean at home either.)

6. Snotty Bitch Staff – What is this place? An exclusive upscale restaurant or someplace where I drop a few ounces of sweat, wash my ass, and then leave? So what’s with the attitude? This place costs a lot of money and you aren’t going to be here in 3 months, so watch the attitude!

7. Grunting Man – You know this clown. He comes in, arms akimbo, with belted waist, does some posturing and flexing before the mirrors before heading over to the weights.

What’s the first thing he does? Bends down, does a clean snatch and jerk making the most disturbing grunts and yowls you’ve heard since you last went to the zoo. What creature is making that noise? The missing link?

8. Commentators / Judges – Do they exercise or is it their job to note your progress? Do they have a life or is it spent all day in the health club? Do they ever exercise? They spend so much time watching others, and talking about them that’ve forgotten the purpose of the health club: exercise.

9. It’s Hard to End the Membership – Finally, you understand why the contract is so long, so convoluted, and they insist on an automatic payment plan.

10. Someone is always on your favorite machine – That quick workout is never quick, because there’s always someone on your favorite machine. She’s taking her sweet time about it. No quick reps with this one, she’s going to be there for a while. Frankly, that’s how it is with all the weight machines, everyone likes them.

The health club is empty during working hours, and crowded during the “off” hours.

Although I hate them, I still may join one. They have the machinery I don’t. I need a complete and thorough workout routine with the weights – no matter the wait.

It would be nice if I could create my own custom workout and payment plan with a nearby health club.