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  • Writer's pictureD. Randall Faro

Maybe I Should Join a Jim


Maybe I should join a jim.

Working out at gyms has been a regular and intense part of my life since 1986. For many years if the choice was to miss a meal or miss a workout, the victuals took backseat. My current gym is no longer current. We’re not talking about a virus-induced temporary shutdown. 24-Hour Fitness just filed for bankruptcy and closed a hundred of their locations permanently. One of them is mine.

Since the mid-80s I have been a paying member of five gyms that went belly-up. In most cases I just showed up one day to find a “closed forever” sign on the door, homage again paid to the patron saint of couch potatoes, Flabbyronious. What’s a fellow to do?

Gyms exist for a reason. Only a Schwarzenegger can afford to have at home the range of weights and machines needed to thoroughly work all six major muscle groups. They also have world-class treadmills that a) I can’t afford and b) take up too much living room space. In addition, gyms provide a sweat-and-groan camaraderie that motivates and inspires.

But now it has been taken from me again. And when this damnable pandemic is brought under control I must search anew for a suitable replacement. In the meantime, home alternatives are sought. But their effectiveness is, to put it politely, rotten. At least compared to a professionally stocked gym. Carrying buckets of water up and down stairs is not only a poor exercise substitute, I tend to get soaking wet.

So when they re-open, I will, even at my ripe old age, seek a new facility to stress my muscles and joints. But given my history with gyms, maybe I should look for a jim.

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