Until joining the Michiana YMCA, I would have said it was impossible to really love your gym. How could you love a place that forces you to get all sweaty in front of a hundred strangers? Working out isn’t something you’re supposed to enjoy, rather, it’s something you have to do. When I joined the local “Y” my opinion of going to the gym actually changed.
My husband, Bob, and I often joke that the Michiana YMCA is the friendliest place on Earth. The staff members are insanely friendly and make a point to chat with you when you enter and leave, the people in the aerobics classes actually make conversation, and the group fitness instructors enthusiastically welcome new people to their classes and orient them to the experience. That may not seem like a lot, but when you’re accustomed to going to gyms where most people don’t acknowledge your existence and avoid all eye contact so that you won’t stare at them in their sweaty workout clothes, it actually feels pretty good.
In addition to the overall friendliness factor of the YMCA, I’m also always impressed by the diversity. Members consist of old people, young people, skinny people, overweight people, gay people, straight people, rich people, poor people, and people of many different races and ethnicities. There is no pressure to look like a buff supermodel with a six pack. People are there with the same goal – to get healthy and to have a good time while doing it.
The building isn’t glamorous; In fact it’s quite old. However, it has everything a normal human needs to get fit. The equipment is in great shape. There’s a pool, lots of workout classes at different times, a free weight room, cardio equipment, a spinning room, racquetball and basketball courts, childcare, and lots of children’s activities. This spring they’re opening a second location in the old Mishawaka Pinnacle Athletics building that will offer twice the fun. Members will be able to go to classes at either location for the same price.
Memberships prices are reasonable, especially for multiple people living in the same household. Adding a spouse or family member to a membership only costs $5. They also offer scholarships for individuals who can’t afford the full monthly fee. Check their website for the current list of prices and classes.
Image courtesy of http://www.michianaymca.org/.