Thank you all for the comments on my post yesterday, An Open Letter to LA Fitness.
The reason I posted the letter on my blog was because I believe it’s important for people to have the information before they make a big commitment to something like a gym membership. I think gym memberships are like renting apartments. You have to look at a lot of crappy places to see which one will fit you the best. Are there annoying neighbors? Are the apartments clean? Is the fridge always broken? Do the neighbors have trash in their front yard? Is the landlord a jerk that’s going to give you constant grief? Is the apartment worth the expensive rent?
It’s no different for a gym. If you are REALLY committed to losing weight, being healthy and happy you have to LIKE where you are going. You’re going to spend a lot of time there. Are the machines broken? Are the locker rooms clean? Is the pool clean? Are the other gym-goers friendly and do they clean up after they sweat all over a machine? Are the people that work there pleasant and helpful?
Gyms cost a lot of money. It is so worth the time and leg work to find the right one. I’m so glad that I found out early on that LA Fitness was NOT the kind of place I would life–before I was locked into a multiple year membership.
My intentions on publishing the letter were not to make any of my readers feel badly. I do know a few people that currently have memberships at LA Fitness and they enjoy it there. That’s great! I’m glad they did not have a negative experience there. My intentions were more to inform my readers of this experience AND to hopefully shame LA Fitness into rethinking some of their business practices.
When I left LA Fitness after my negative experience with them, my first thought was “I wonder how a newbie would feel if that was their experience?” Someone just starting their fitness journey could easily be discouraged by a negative experience and use that as a reason NOT to join a gym or get fit. Trust me, I had plenty of negative experiences at gyms before I found one I felt comfortable at. I’m glad I didn’t let one or two bad apples sour the entire experience and keep me from getting fit!
I’m not asking my readers to boycott or protest LA Fitness. If you go there and enjoy it, right on! I’m just sharing my experiences. It is all part of the experience of going gym-free. I knew going gym-free would create a lot of writing material but had no idea it would be about this.
From the feedback I received from the post here, on Facebook and Twitter, I am not on an island by myself when it comes to negative experiences at LA Fitness. Which makes me sad.
A friend posted on Facebook: “I am so impressed. Way to actually stand up for customer rights. You rock.”
Tina said: “I used to workout at an LA Fitness and never liked it. unfortunately that is one of the only gym options in our area. I was SO thankful when a new gym (my current one) opened closer to me so I could leave that chain!”
Jill said: “Very well written, honest note. I think it is great that you let the company know how you were treated. So often letters like that need to be written- but we don’t take the time in our busy lives. We need to do this so is stops. Thank you for being a role model on so many different levels!!!”
Jenn said: “Like you, I’ve had a bad experience with LA Fitness’s employees that left me a bad taste in my mouth. Nothing wrong with the facilities. Very nice and state of the art and one of the few in my area with a swimming pool, but not worth the extremely aggressive sales pitch that I endured.”
Lots of other great comments. I appreciate everyone’s input! I still haven’t heard back from LA Fitness but if I ever do, I will post their response here.
I got home from work on Monday and Michael and I made an early dinner. We were both hungry–me because it was a rest day and I’d eaten light, him because he biked to work. We went the easy route. Neither of us felt like going to the store to get anything else, so brats were it.
We still have some zucchini growing in the garden, despite the cool, damp weather that’s descended on Portland. I sliced up one zucchini and Michael grilled them up. I grated some fresh parmesan on top of the veggies.
We settled in to watch a few episodes of True Blood. I’m trying really hard to like the show but it is so dang cheesy it’s hard. Is anyone else struggling with it? What helped me was playing with Fat Kitty during the show. I blew bubbles and he went NUTS. It was totally adorable. He was jumping into the air trying to catch the bubbles, then getting confused when they popped. 🙂
We crawled into bed and I rested my head on Michael’s chest and immediately passed out. I haven’t been that tired in a long time!
QUESTION: What’s a popular TV show you are struggling to like?