LA(me) Fitness

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Good morning! I know some of my readers are reading from cities covered in snow today, but we are warm & sunny here in California!  We ARE having a pajama day though, because the kids are feeling a bit sniffly & under the weather; we decided to take it easy this Friday.

As you all know, we are a Navy family and we move every 3 years or so.  As I become more seasoned with each move, I know there are several things I look into when we first hear of a new duty station: schools, house, gym…in that order.  Yes, the gym takes priority on our list, and when looking for a gym, we look at location, price, hours, & amenities.

We have been members of gyms across the country for the past 12+ years.  Big name gyms, local gyms, base gyms, you name it.  We joined Gold’s Gym in 2001 before it opened in Virginia Beach.  Before Gold’s, I had never even walked into a big box gym; the shiny new equipment & its massive size impressed me.  We were members with them for 5 years before we moved to Florida.  In our area of Florida, there was a regional chain, Riviera Fitness that we looked into; the Hubby decided it would be best for him to just go to the gym on base, and I signed up with Riviera.  During my membership, my branch of Riviera got bought out by a small business owner and it became an all-women facility.  I loved it.  I stayed with them for 2 years until we moved to Maryland.  In Maryland, we toured 2 gyms in the area; one was a local gym, and another was a big name gym that was privately owned.  The first we toured (the local gym) gave me a bad vibe, so we ended up at the big name gym (World Gym).  It was home from the second I walked into it.  I spent a lot of my time in Maryland in that gym, made lifelong friends there, and even took a different career path because of the encouragement I got from that gym.  So, to say World Gym set my standards pretty high is an understatement.  Not to say that World Gym was perfect.  It wasn’t…it was on the small side (from what I was used to) and the equipment (while clean, well-maintained, and in working condition) was a little out dated.  While I was sad to say good-bye to my home gym & all the friends I made in Maryland, I was a little excited when we found LA Fitness here in Chula Vista.


We toured it after the lunch time hour, so there weren’t many people in the facility, and everything was in order.  We were impressed with its size, amenities (there’s an Olympic sized indoor pool members have access to), and the amount of cardio equipment that was available.  They did not have kettlebells, weighted medicine balls, or a “box” of any type, but we had our own equipment of that type at home, so it was something we were willing to overlook.  The price, while double what we were paying for in Maryland, was good and the best in the area.  We signed up right away.  I was excited!

Let me back up and say that every single gym we had ever stepped into prior to LA Fitness was always well-maintained and members always, ALWAYS were aware of proper gym etiquette.  There was always 1 or 2 douchebags in every gym who had no idea what they were doing, but overall, everyone in every gym we ever came across was polite and courteous of others.

The first time we worked out at LA Fitness was December 21st.  I kid you not, this is what the weight area looked like:


I couldn’t find a 20 lb dumbbell to save my life.  Not only that, I didn’t know if certain pieces of equipment were being used because no one puts their crap away!




I spent 1/4 of my time looking for weights or taking weights off of equipment.

Not only were there lunkheads leaving weights all over the place, everyone goes to the gym 12-deep and they all yell, grunt, and cheer each other on.




My eyeballs get a workout every time I go to the gym because I spend the entire time rolling them.

Oh, and the BEST part about this gym is the personal space these people are NOT aware of.  The other day, as I was doing single-leg deadlifts (in bright purple pants, I might add, so it was hard to miss me) a guy WALKED INTO ME while I was doing them, causing me to stumble forward.  He looked at me and I looked at him and we gave each other the stare down before I told him to “next time, watch where you’re going.”  I think he was expecting an apology, but he wasn’t going to get one.


And let’s not get started on all the blatant nakedness that goes on in the locker rooms.  No personal space there either.

So I hate my new gym.  I’ve considered the other options in our area: the YMCA has two locations & free childcare when I need it, but the layout and equipment available is MEH.  There’s also another gym in the area, which is AWESOME, called B2Be, but I’m not joining there unless someone’s got $420/mo they can loan me.

I’ve considered quitting the gym all together, but there’s equipment at the gym I NEED that I don’t have at home, and really the price we pay at LAme Fitness is the best in the area.  So I’ve decided to run outside 3x a week and strength train 3x a week…so really I’ll only need to subject myself to the madness 3x a week.

The plus in all this is that you get to read my blog posts about how much I hate my new gym. 😉

What are your nightmare gym experiences?? What would you do in my situation?


7 thoughts on “LA(me) Fitness

  1. megroach says:

    Wow, sounds super lame. Sorry it’s not working out. I don’t currently go to a gym but when I did I loved the all female one. If I were you I would only go when I needed to!

  2. mrmia says:

    I think it’s a Southern California culture because I have the same complaints here. Not sure if you remember me complaining. I finally gave up and joined a Crossfit box. While each box will vary here and there, the basics are still the same and you know you’ll get a good workout no matter what. It is a temporary happiness for me because I still miss our little gym in SoMD and the people there. Good luck with finding your niche.. I’m on 6 months and counting.

  3. Angie says:

    Have you thought of joining 24 hr fitness. They are everywhere in SD. The facilities are super clean, amazing equipment. They are always having a deal for membership. I got mine years ago, no money down and i only pay $13 a month. 😀 even though i am not living in SD right now(i am stationed in South Carolina), when we go home on leave i always workout there. 😀

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