In the US “me”-oriented culture, where everyone wants their 15 minutes of fame now! (plus a pill that makes them beautiful, slim and in top shape while keeping them young), gyms and health clubs are an interesting throwback to yesteryear.
Although they have evolved a great deal, our gyms and health clubs still operate on a premise of hard work, sweat, commitment, and discipline. They continue to be an icon in the health and beauty industry as a basic building block in our health/fitness, anti-aging, weight-loss and body-sculpting routines.
So what do you get for all of this hard work and effort? How about the following:
- Qualified Instruction This is one of the main reasons that we join a gym or health club. We want to learn how to get in shape and stay in shape! Most gyms and health clubs have at least one qualified instructor that can set you up on a fitness program. Their expertise can save you not only thousands of hours of learning curve time but also keep you from hurting or even killing yourself!
- Hi-Tech Equipment A well equipped gym or health club has thousands and sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars of fitness equipment. Most of us have neither the space nor the money to reproduce this flexibility of cross training, specialty training and time efficiency.
- Consistent Routine Getting out of the house regularly and into a routine is one of the keys to achieving peak health and fitness. When the daily visit to your local gym or health club becomes routine, you are one step closer to realizing your fitness goals. If you work out at home it is much easier to get distracted and put off that very important workout until tomorrow.
- Peer Encouragement/Workout Partners Seeing and interacting with others that are working towards similar fitness goals is a big motivator. Unless you are an extreme introvert, it’s beneficial to train with others. A gym or health club offers that opportunity to meet new friends and develop training partners that ultimately help us to achieve our fitness goals.
- Learning new recreation/activities If your gym or health club offers additional classes or activities, these can broaden your exercise or health/fitness base. For example if you join a large health/fitness complex you might have the opportunity to try out their tennis, racquetball, swimming, sand volleyball, spinning, yoga, karate, dance classes, etc. You may never have originally thought of incorporating a new learning activity into your health/fitness routine, but it will now be available – all it takes is a commitment to learn something new!
- Social activities/new friendships Many gyms and health clubs offer singles get-togethers or special travel functions (for example cruises, rafting trips, cooking classes) that enable you not only to meet new friends, but also to incorporate health and fitness into your daily life. It is much easier to do that when your friends share the same dedication to a healthy lifestyle!
For many people, these benefits present a very convincing argument that gyms and health clubs repay many times over the time, money and effort involved in using them.