Friday, January 7, 2011

the year of the gym and Andrea Hydeen

hello? is this thing on? is anyone still out there? does anyone 'get' the title of the post? bonus points if you do. anyway...

I'll admit that when I read other people's blogs and they say "oh man! sorry I haven't blogged in ages! I've been so busy" I think to myself, 'hm....didn't really notice.' Because that's how life is. We are all quite consumed in our own lives. I realize that probably nobody has noticed my lack of blogging in the last few months, but I have. It's always the first to go when things get crazy, as it should be I guess. But I'm the one who misses it. I miss being in the state of mind where I want to remember things to blog about because otherwise they all pass me by. And suddenly I'm wondering how my kids got so big, and how exactly they've changed so much, and no record really of the fact that my life is flying by.

So now that things have calmed down a LITTLE bit, I want to try write more. And I have the perfect situation to start me out.

ok, well, for starters, remember last year when I wrote about being "fit again in 2010?" Well, I've finally come to terms with the fact that I just really really SUCK at trying to work out at my house, or in my neighborhood, or whatever. That little motto was a COMPLETE FAILURE.

This year I'll turn 30, and I just didn't quite think I'd look like this or feel like this already. So Steve and I took the plunge and got a gym membership. along with all the other people who want to set new years resolutions. it's been CRAZY there.

so anyway, we got in on the very last day of the special, so we had no enrollment fee and saved 90 bucks for each of us. we were pretty pumped about that. And when you join Urban Active, they give you a "consultation" or whatever where they give you these dumb papers to fill out about your habits and your goals and what not. I hate goals. always have. So instead of just giving me a HUGE pat on the back for showing up that night (which was pretty major for a self-proclaimed lazy butt), they decide to make me feel like crap about myself and my body fat content which puts me at "some health risk." thanks. I already knew it was time to do something, which is why I'm HERE.

ok, so then...he gives us this KILLER workout. I did alright actually until he had us do some crazy frog jumping type of move and Steve and I both thought we were going to die. Steve actually thought he was going to puke for real (and I thought he was too. I kept saying, "okay, babe, do you have a plan? you need to have a plan if you're going to puke. do you know where the closest garbage can is? because every time I think I"m going to puke I have to know where the garbage cans are.") He seemed quite uninterested in my concern for having a plan, but thankfully he didn't puke. But boy did we feel ridiculous trying to jump and feeling like we were stapled to the floor. it was S.A.D.

so when we're all hot and about to die, he sits us down to talk about options for trainers. I was totally unprepared for this conversation and he starts talking about spending hundreds of extra dollars a month to meet with a trainer every time we come. I'm going nuts because it's like, 7:57 and our kids are in childcare (which we got for free for ONE NIGHT ONLY while we did this thing, because we didn't add the package when we came in to pay for our memebership. if we HAD, it would have been only ten extra bucks a month, but because of our schedules we thought we'd never be able to workout together anyway, and since they close at 8, I thought I wouldn't be able to get supper done and all that and get there and work out and get the kids picked up all by 8. so we said no to the childcare package.) okay, so finally I say to the guy, "okay, well, it's pretty unrealistic to even think about these packages for us, so we might as well not even discuss it." and he says, "because of....?????" and I say "cost." so he flips the page over to discuss a bunch of other more reasonable packages.

So he's saying stuff that I don't really pay attention to because I'm thinking about having to get the kids, which he KNOWS, and we start thinking about maybe doing one of the short term packages for like 90 bucks where both of us could meet with a trainer once a week for 3 months. We thought it was a good idea since we felt really overwhelmed there and wondered how people even know what to do for their bodies. so then they CALL OUR NAMES on the loudspeaker to come and get our kids. So I run off and leave steve to tie up the loose ends. The only thing I asked is if we could get the childcare package for those three months even though we had declined it like two days before (when we didn't know we were going to get suckered into their scheme), and they said yes, but only at full price, which is 20 bucks a month.

SO...I run out to get the kids and apologize and say something about being stuck with the trainer and the girl won't even acknowledge me. She has my three kids all bundled up in their coats, etc waiting at the front desk with her. So we go sit to wait for steve and Lillian is freaking out. "Mommy! why were you late? Why didn't you come on time? That girl said she hates parents who don't come and get thier kids! You didn't come on time! she was mad at you!" Seriously????? I understand her frustration. I do. I was frustrated too. But to say that in front of my KIDS? that really pissed me off.

So I'm sitting there boiling mad that they won't give us cheap childcare rate for the time span of 3 months when were going to meet with the trainer, when we had NO IDEA that this whole training package would be presented because they made us decide all that before we had even been there to work out or anything. It was all just really weird. And I didn't like the feeling of it. I realize we're only talking about a savings of 30 bucks, but it wasn't as much about the money as it was about the feeling of not understanding everything when we made the decision.

Okay, so Steve finally comes back and we leave and I tell him the story about the childcare girl and he's mad too and we both decide to just try to let this be a positive thing. We were spending money on ourselves to make ourselves better. To be healthier, to feel better. So we'd just forget about the things that bugged us. Except there was one more thing. The guy didn't even set up our first training session, so he said he was going to call steve about it or something (which he never did). But we were going to just be positive.

So later in the week I stopped by the trainers desk to ask aobut our first training session and got it set up for the following night. So we showed up and met with our trainer and had to go over all the info that we recorded during the consultation and give her a little info about ourselves and our measurements, etc.

She was pretty nice. We finally felt like we had ONE person on our team who would know us and care about our progress more than just getting more money out of us. grrr.... So we meet with her for almost an hour, and she made a little plan with us and showed us some of the machines she wanted us to use for cardio this week. We get done, go back downstairs, and sit at the table to schedule our next session.

Ok, so at this point, the things we are totally annoyed about but trying not dwell on are:

1. They sprung the whole training session package on us without giving us time to take the info and think about it. we maybe could have asked, but we were in such a hurry, so we decided to just to try for a short time to get a running start.

2. They wouldn't give us the childcare rate they had offered us TWO days before, when we had no idea what our membership experience would actually look like.

3. the childcare girl saying that stuff in front of my kids.

4. didn't mention it, but it felt like all the employees there were NOT there to help us. We had to work really hard to get anyone to answer our questions, which really sucks when you're in a HUGE place and really overwhelmed.

5. We found out while meeting with our trainer that we didn't actually sign up for a 3 month thing, but for a 12 month thing. So it was the 90 bucks for three months, but that was just the first part of it. It's a year commitment, which is why we were charged WAY more than that (which I was going to inquire about). But since Steve paid for it and signed for it while I was with the kids that night, then we figured we were stuck.

ok, so five things really bugging us. (and that's not even counting all the girls who like, GET READY (as in hair and makeup) to work out, and prance around in their cute little tight workout clothes. puh-leeze.)

And then...the straw that broke THIS camel's back?

Chelsea, our trainer, schedules our next appointment and hands us her business card...with her HALF NAKED self on the front, and her HALF NAKED backside on the backside. oh, and by half naked, I mean, 99% naked. Apparently she does body building contests, etc, and so she has these awful pictures of her in a...bikini???? can you even call it that????? And she GAVE them to us. to my husband! I didn't even know what to do. I got all flustered, and just kept staring at the card. because I couldn't look at HER while feeling so out of control of the situation. Oh gosh, I don't even know what to say.

I realize that whoever is reading this doesnt' have all the emotion attached, so you probably dont' think any of it is a really big deal. But we're cheap and don't often spend money on ourselves regularly like that, so we just had really high expectations I guess, which were NOT met. I love love love going and working out, which is really wierd to hear coming out of my mouth. I think I just like to get out of the house every once in a while. It can be hard feeling "stuck" here all day with so many kids, so just being out and on my own is probably most of it. So I DO love that. But it's going to take a while for me to get over some of this stuff I bet.

but oh's done now. hopefully. I'm trying to have a positive attitude. I know I probably SHOULD go talk to a manager about all of this, but ugh, I feel sick just thinking about it. It's just ONE MORE uncomfortable situation to add to that place, and I feel like there's enough for now. :) I want to feel comfortable there. :)

ok, so....that's the end of the story. for now. and the moral???? don't join a gym. :)

JUST kidding.

But don't join mine. :)


denver, colorado said...

oh my goodness that is a crappy situation! I love your story telling style for sure. I can sense the moment! btw, I love your positivity!

StephanieJoy81 said...

The year of the boar and Jackie Robinson?

Teresa said...

yikes, I completely sense the emotion.....sounds like a horrible experience but I am impressed at your outlook. Can't wait to hear of your progress!!!

Corinne Doughan said...

First off, WAY TO GO on making your health a priority and doing it with Steve! When Colin and I started to workout and be more healthy together it really brought us closer together as a couple too.

Secondly, I would TOTALLY write the manager even if you don't talk to them in person. If I were the manager I would want to know how to make my business more appealing to the AVERAGE person, not just the small population of body builders and trainers in this world. I'm sure you are not the only person who has experienced the frustrations you have and their gym could really benefit from your input. You could just about copy and past your blog and send it in a formal letter to save you the time.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to hearing more about your journey to better health in future blogs!

Kathy said...

Oh the joys of a big corporate gym! Patrick and I joined a gym (and have since quit), but they did the exact same thing to us....act like you are getting a 'great deal' and then offer the consult, only to side swipe you with how they can save your life by taking all your money! I (we) can totally relate to your experience! Though not the childcare part, since we didn't have Amelia at that point. That may have just pushed me over the edge! All that to say - I understand your pain and frustration.

In reality though - I'm super proud of you guys for having the initiative to join. Its hard and you feel so out of place (at least I did). I hope you guys get A LOT out of working out and get where you want to be! Good Luck!!
....oh and to top it off....I think we still have left over training sessions, but we can't use them since we are no longer members! Go Figure! Don't be us - stick with it! :)

Randi said...

Thank goodness for the small atmosphere of the OC Fitness Center. I'd never have the courage or patience for what you just described. Actually, if it had been me in your place I would've demanded my money back and never went back!
I say you print off a copy of this blog entry and hand it over to the manager there. You describe your frustrations and experience so well! and I'm about positive you're not the only person to feel the way you do!