Sunday, November 18, 2012
working out over winter: review of fitspace gyms
This time of year, as the days get colder and shorter, and my skin puckers in protest whenever I step outside, I begin to wonder how on earth I'll keep fit over the next few months! I've never really been a gym person but I have been looking into affordable options for exercising indoors for the winter, more for the safety aspect than anything else. It's so easy to slip over on those icy pavements!
So when Fitspace invited me to come and check out their new premises in North London I eagerly popped over for a workout.
The idea behind Fitspace is that they provide a basic, low-cost gym experience that cuts out all the expensive elements of a health club that most members never end up using, therefore giving great value gym memberships at a fraction of what you would pay elsewhere. If you want any extras - classes, personal training, etc - you can add those to your membership. It can be as basic or as inclusive as you like. A monthly membership starts at just £12! If you went three times a week, that's something crazy like...gets calculator...£1 a visit?! Considering the range of equipment they have, I think that's incredible value for money.
I went along to the Islington club, which was very clean, spacious, well laid out and not too crowded. There was a massive selection of cardio activities - treadmills, stair climbers, bikes, ellipticals, rowing machines - and then an impressive row of weights machines, and an area with medicine balls and mats to stretch. There was also a room that had lots of Rocky types pumping iron in it. I dubbed it "the hard core room" :)
I did a 20 minute run on the treadmill - but made the mistake of not securing my hair properly and bobby pins went a'flying! There were so many treadmills and cardio machines, I can imagine even at peak times there would be very little, if any, waiting. Then I did a circuit of all the weights machines. My upper body strength needs a lot of work but I worked hard and was pleased, though unsurprised, to see how strong my thighs were on the hip abductor! I finished with the medicine ball. I love ab burn!
The changing rooms were very clean and well maintained, with lockers to hold everything securely. You just have to bring a pound coin to work them, and you get that returned at the end.
If I lived a bit closer I think this Fitspace gym would fit the bill perfectly. It's fabulously good value for money and a great option if you're an experienced gym user and just want to be able to workout independently. There is always a staff member on hand if you need any help though. Russell at Islington was very friendly :) I've always felt a bit self conscious in gyms but what I liked about this one was that everyone was just there to do their own thing. Even with my hair pin incident and taking a while to figure out how to position myself on the bicep machine, I don't think anyone noticed! Fitspace is just perfect if you want to hit the ground running, literally!
Are you a gym member? Do you find you go more often in the winter?
This post is in partnership with Fitspace Gyms.