since we moved to shoreview, we've talked about joining a gym again. joe and i have both felt like we needed to get active again, and with me being pregnant i have even more incentive to workout since it's good for the baby and helps with increasing energy and limiting unnecessary weight gain. originally we'd discussed joining the community center. bennett has done 2 sessions of swim lessons there and it's less than a mile from our house. it has an indoor waterpark and an indoor playground, which would be great for me to bring bennett to when i start [SOON!] staying home full time.
when i started looking into it further, however, there were some things i didn't like. first, the group fitness classes are not included in the membership cost. the membership fees are pretty low so paying for the classes on top of that wouldn't be the end of the world, but i didn't love that it wasn't a one-shot deal. childcare also isn't included in the membership fee. while it's only $1 per hour per child, again it's an additional cost to think about each time i go. finally, the biggest thing that swayed me away from a community center membership is that you can't bring kids to the childcare center until they're 6 months old. since we have a new baby on the way, i don't want to have to wait until he's 6 months old before i can go to the gym without securing my own childcare. i would far rather workout during the day than wait until the evening when joe is home because by then, i'm spent. also, i'm sure there will be days when that hour or two at the gym will be a very welcome break from my soon-to-be 2 under 2 :) even if i only go to get a shower!
the biggest things i liked about the community center are the indoor waterpark and indoor playground. i saw on the website, though, that you can buy a 10 pack of day passes for $46, or pay $5 per visit. i figured this would be a good way to still be able to utilize those fun spots for bennett without committing to a full membership, and it's relatively inexpensive.
so, i started looking into options at other gyms. lifetime fitness is probably a 10-15 minute drive from our house. however, because the closest club to us is the highest "level" of lifetime's clubs, the monthly membership fee was rather hefty. our insurance plan doesn't offer any health club discounts, so we'll be footing the whole thing on our own and i just couldn't justify the cost there.
so, that led me to the YMCA. our closest Y is less than 10 minutes from our house and i found it to be a good compromise financially between the stripped down membership at the community center and the expensive monthly fee at lifetime. everything is included- group fitness classes, childcare, etc. and you can bring kids as young as 6 weeks to the childcare center. they have an indoor and outdoor pool and you have access to all the YMCAs in the twin cities.
joe is now an individual member at the community center, as he wouldn't use any of the amenities (primarily group fitness classes) that i was looking for in a gym. and joe could bring bennett to the childcare on the rare occasion he'd workout at a time when i wasn't home to be with ben or when the new baby comes and i want to spend some [likely rare] one-on-one time with him. i joined the Y so i can utilize the classes and childcare starting at 6 weeks postpartum. i went to yoga on saturday morning and felt great afterwards. and i apparently lost my mind and went to a spinning class monday night. it was intense but it did feel good (minus the soreness thanks to the tiny seat- ouch!). i'm
really enjoying being active again so far and look forward to having the gym as an option for getting out of the house this winter.