Sunday, March 9, 2014

New Gym, A New Workout Routine, and Weekend Fun

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Retro Fitness to see if I wanted to check out their brand-new gyms that just opened in San Jose, California (one on Foxworthy and the other on Blossom Hill Road). It’s my understanding that these are the first two Retro Fitness locations on the West Coast.

When we arrived, I first noticed the colorful interior - yellow and red. While the colors do remind you of a certain fast food chain, I really enjoyed the colorful surroundings and felt energized throughout my workout.

Retro Fitness has all the free weights and machines that you could want to get a good workout. Another nice feature is that all the cardio machines have built-in TVs.


But probably the coolest part for me is the Cardio Theatre – a darkened room with a big movie screen with all the types of cardio equipment also found on the main floor. Every day there is a different movie that is shown continuously. On one of the days they were showing The Fast and the Furious - it made time go by really quickly. Walking on a treadmill while watching a good movie is a fun way to get those 10,000+ daily steps.

In addition, Retro Fitness also offers group exercise classes as well as recorded exercise classes on demand that can be played in the group exercise room on a big screen.

Retro Fitness also has a small childcare room as well as basic, but clean, locker rooms.

We belonged to a “fancy” gym (thanks to a huge discount) for many years but canceled the membership about six months ago because I had been doing more yoga and barre classes at a studio, and we have some weight sets at home. I am impressed by Retro Fitness and by what it offers for only $19.99/month (and no enrollment fee with a one year membership).

After I did my first workout at Retro Fitness, I was reminded of what to do and not to do when you start a new workout routine, or what to do when you get back to a routine you haven’t done in quite some time:
  • Don’t assume you can lift the same weights you lifted months (or years) ago – you will be incredibly sore, or, worse, hurt yourself lifting too much. I was truly surprised by how much strength I had lost, especially because I do a fair amount of body weight exercises, like push ups and also do squats with dumbbells, etc.
  • Start with weights you can lift for 8 to 10 reps with good form, even if that’s a lot less than what you used to be able to lift.
  • You don’t have to use every single piece of equipment in the gym – in fact, you shouldn’t, instead have a plan (see next bullet point)
  • Make a workout plan before you start your workout so that you don’t wander around the gym without a focus or get distracted by “cool” equipment.
After my first workout, I was very sore, but I really enjoyed the soreness. While I get a fair amount of physical activity every day, I haven’t done as many weight workouts with heavy weights as I should have in the past months, and lifting heavy weights again was a really nice change of pace. It was a reminder that it’s good to change things up once in a while, and I truly feel a passion again for lifting weights, something that I hadn’t felt in quite some time.

We worked out at Retro Fitness a few times this weekend, but the highlight of our weekend was that the kid was student of the month at his Korean school.


Reminder in case you are interested: The April Conscious Cleanse starts on April 5. Through Sunday, March 16 you can get $25 off registration with code EBCC414. Click here for more information and to register. Here are my posts about my previous experiences with the Conscious Cleanse.

Questions: Do you belong to a gym? If so, what’s your favorite part of your gym? Do you lift weights? If so, how do you keep things interesting? What was the highlight of your weekend?
 
Be well,
Andrea

[Disclaimer: I received a free 30-day workout pass from Retro Fitness, but, as always, all opinions in this review are my own.]

36 comments:

  1. What a fun gym experience Andrea. I don't belong to a gym. I prefer to exercise at home with free weights I also have a treadmill as a back up when the weather won't permit walking outside. We hike and bike too so I get a variety of work outs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think we enjoy the same activities! :) I love to walk and hike, too. And I also use free weights at home. I really enjoy the wider variety of weight workouts I can do at the gym, however (especially after a break!).

      Delete
  2. I don't belong to a gym; doubt I ever will. I have a machine at home, not using it regularly, and I know I need to.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Time to get serious about lifting some weights, Gwen! :)

      Delete
  3. I havent in so so so long BUT am toying with joining one this summer to ShAkE ThInGs Up!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Always good to ShAkE ThInGs Up! :) But I know what you are doing is working wherever you are doing it!!!!

      Delete
  4. I love the idea of a cardio theater! Time really does go by faster when you're doing something fun - sometimes I even read fun books on the stationary bike, although I know my workout suffers when I do that so I don't do it often ;) I had to laugh at your fast-food restaurant reminder - that's the first thing I thought of, too!

    Congrats to the kid for being student of the month! What a wonderful accomplishment! I hope he's been wearing his medal around the house :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, the cardio theater is great! Really makes it fun! :)

      How did you know that he has been wearing his medal around the house?! ;)

      Delete
  5. I belong to 2 gyms. 24 hour fitness and the YMCA. I joined 24 hour fitness years ago when we decided to leave Spectrum. Our Spectrum membership was cheap for the club, but it was $1200/year and we were able to get 3 years for that at 24 hr.

    Now 24 hr fitness is $99/year per person. So my husband goes there, but I mostly don't. It's worth it to me to keep it active though, even though I usually go 2-5 times a year (when the YMCA is closed and if I have really bad insomnia at 3 am).

    Our YMCA is a family membership. I joined for the pool. We take the kids there swimming. I like to spin and swim. I guess I'm definitely a joiner and I like classes. I really don't lift weights much at the gym, especially in the winter (cold/flu season). Full time job and 2 kids - one 20 months old - I don't get enough sleep and I'm susceptible to getting sick.

    I prefer to lift at home, but that's hit or miss because the boys wake up really early. So I may only get 5 minutes into it. I like the IDEA of working out at home (and still do it in spurts), but it's MUCH easier for me to work out around other people. Personality thing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I find that my workouts at home get easily disrupted or don't happen as planned (even though I always plan my workouts for the week). It somehow is easier to go to the gym and get it done there.

      The kid also takes swimming lessons at the Y, but were only have a program membership there.

      Delete
  6. A new gym just opened down the street and I am thinking of joining it. Congrats to your boy for being Student of the Month.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Pam! And a gym that's close by gives you fewer excuses not to go! :)

      Delete
  7. Congrats to your son! I used to belong to two gyms - one near my house and one near my office. I finally ditched the one by my house because I never went - they moved it across town and it wasn't convenient, although I held onto it for six months before finally cancelling it.

    Love my new gym, just wish they had group classes that aren't at 6:00 a.m. or 10:30 a.m.!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Biz!

      And, yes, group classes at the right time are important!

      Delete
  8. I want that gym!!!!! :) I belong to 24 Hour Fitness & pretty bad with maintenance & all but I get to life & exercise so I will take it! :) What a great place for you!!!!!

    Congrats to your son!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it's a nice gym, and I love that it's affordable.. I belonged to 24 Hour Fitness years ago, and Retro Fitness is definitely a lot nicer.

      Delete
  9. I don't belong to a gym, not anymore and am not going back either. I love this one, when I saw it, I thought that most gyms are pretty boring when you think about it. They could definitely use more colour like yours. I like the movie concept too.

    Congrats to your boy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Fran!

      And, yes, you are right, most gyms are quite boring. The color is a nice change. The cardio movie theater is great!

      Delete
  10. I do not belong to a gym...we have an elliptical at but have to admit that I just used once...
    This gym looks great, like the the colors...
    Have a great week Andrea :D

    ReplyDelete
  11. BAH HA HA HA! Did you just want to get some McDonalds after you work outs?! LMFAO

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha. No, but I am actually surprised by how much I like the colors. They are definitely unusual... :)

      Delete
  12. That's a colorful gym! Mine is all grey... :-(

    What surprised me the most after a gym hiatus is that I could still lift the same weights for the same number of reps. HOWEVER, I was so sore 2 days later! That's when it hit! LOL

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had the same experience when I took shorter breaks from the gym. But this time, the break was long enough that it really affected my strength.

      And, yes, the colors are a nice change from the usual grey!

      Delete
  13. Oooh nice! When my gym membership expired awhile ago I "test drove" other gyms. Some were super nice. Just not conveniently located.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Location is important! And, yes, "test driving" different gyms is fun! :)

      Delete
  14. it looks like a fun place to work out! really neat!

    i used to go to the gym when I was living in the city and i really liked it. There's something about being in a room with others who are also working out that encourages me to work out harder. I specially like all the fitness classes, those were fun! NOw that i live in a house, I don't go to a gym, I have my treadmill and Elliptical machine in the basement that I use in a daily basis. I plan to go for yoga class once a week to change a bit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it's fun! :)

      I think having exercise equipment at home is convenient, but, as you said, going to the gym and working out with others can be quite motivating.

      Delete
  15. That sounds fun! I do it all at home now but kind of miss the gym sometimes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I especially enjoy the cardio theater; great for days when I can't do my long walks outside.

      Delete
  16. What a fun invitation to get and love the cheery colors, plus the movie option sounds fabulous too! We used to belong to a gym-a fancy, schmancy one with a pool, and a spa, etc. etc. I really liked going there, but realistically speaking, I'd much rather work out at home, or outside, so we dropped our membership and turned our garage in to a gym-best investment ever :-)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thank you for the gym tour, that’s a pretty colorful interior! I don't like public gyms, but I like a small and private gym where I can wear whatever I want and rock some good music out! And great tips on what to do and not to do when you start a new workout routine - it’s important to start slow and do varieties! Congratulations to your kid - I didn’t know he’s mixed Korean! That’s awesome!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, starting slowly and mixing things up is important! Thanks, Rika! :)

      Delete
  18. Great details. Thanks for offering us such a useful details. Keep up the great work and proceed offering us more quality details every now and then.This publish was very perfectly published, and it also contains a lot of useful information. Thanks for discussing amazing details. Exercise Bikes

    ReplyDelete
  19. I love the built-in tv feature of their treadmill. Time surely pass by when you're having fun and it would feel less tiring that way. Sadly, I don't belong to a gym. I have problems committing to a routine. I'm not being lazy or anything I guess I just lack the power of motivation. I jog and do pop Pilates every now and then whenever I feel like it.

    ReplyDelete