Ok, last night I had the most bizarre experience. Actually the most awful experience. But looking back on it today, I realized how ridiculous the whole thing was!

Pretty sure I got scammed.

And pretty sure I'm going to tell you all about it! :)

So, Zach has a gym membership to 24 Hour Fitness. He's had it for several years and basically he gets the greatest deal ever. He stays on his brothers account for $10 a month. I mean for a gym, that is amazing!

So, now I am doing this whole health and wellness thing and have been wanting to join a gym as well. Actually, I've wanted to join one for a long time. They seem so wonderful, those fitness clubs, with their membership cards, and Jacuzzis, and elliptical machines, and yoga classes and dollar daycare.

But like anything Zach and I do I wasn't going to rush into anything. We have been talking about it for a little while. And yesterday I finally researched some online. You know, trying to figure out the best option for the best price.

My top choice, although not really an option was of course LifeTime Fitness. They have the most beautiful facility, cafes, brand new equipment and the mecca of all mecca's a super family friendly out door pool. Ok, that is like my city in the clouds over there. That is a "one day" purchase however. Well, and because logically it just doesn't make sense. It's located at least 20 minutes away, if not 25. And Zach is never going to give up his $10 membership, so it would be just me getting a membership there. And basically, it is just too far away for me to get my money's worth out of it.

Ok, so then, there are all these other choices. Urban Fitness= brand new, and closer, but not super close. It's more cost efficient, but it's at least fifteen minutes down the road(I know that is a very long ways a way!) There are also a ton of other small gyms like in strip malls, but I don't really know anything about those and a little weary to try them.

Basically what the options came down to were Gold's gym: 5 minutes away, and $10 a month. Or. 24 Hour Fitness: 5 minutes away, and $30 a month.

This was really a toss up because Gold's although cheaper, when I called wasn't actually all that much cheaper because I would have preferred to get the $20 a month pass (Although let me tell you that includes unlimited tanning, and an unlimited guest pass. I mean that is a great deal for $19.99/month!). So in the end there was only a $10 difference. And my sisters in law, and Zach all go to 24 Hour. So I felt like if I could go with people, I would be much more likely to go.

Anyways, I couldn't decide. I pitched both ideas to Zach and in his very usual way says, "We can talk about it." And I in my head think, "But aren't we talking about it now?" But I really know that we have never made a decision on the spot, the first time one of us has brought it up. Never. What usually happens is we talk about it together, think about it alone, talk about it together, think about it alone and then when it is the last minute to make the decision we go back and forth trying to get the other person to make the decision Eventually, a decision is made..... eventually.

A gym membership really is not all that important. I didn't actually expect a decision to be made by either of us for at least a month. And besides I didn't even know where I wanted to go. I needed to decide that and then watch the Internet and TV for a couple of months to see if there were any better deals I could grab on to. Then i could make my decision.

So what I did yesterday was print off a 7 day free pass from 24 hour and with that I was going to use it as often as I could. Then my plan was to print off a free pass to Gold's Gym and go try that gym and use that as often as I could. I wanted to feel out both gyms. See which one I liked better!

Ok, that's the longest introduction to a story ever. Yea, that's right. That was just the introduction! So if you're still with me, hold on! It's about to get crazy!

Last night, I took the free pass and and my sisters in law and we visited 24 Hour Fitness. Our intention was simple: Have Fun, Work Hard. That's it. I didn't imagine I could accomplish any more than that and besides it was 10 at night. What more could happen? Oh.... a lot more. A terrifying amount more.

First thing I do, hand the front desk guy my printed off paper with the free pass coupon. First thing he does, waves it around his head like a jackass yelling "Does anybody want this?" In my head I'm thinking "Wow, way to make me feel comfortable, way to make me, the potential customer feel appreciated." From behind the front desk I hear several "No's." (Thanks guys). What? Don't you want my business? Aren't I a potentially valuable customer? Aren't we in a recession??

Finally, one lone man walks forward. Hits on my sister in law and then turns to me. "Follow me." He says in a low, and menacing voice. Ok.......

I follow him back to his desk where he asks me very casually, very politely. "So, have you ever been to our facility before?"

To which I answer stupidly, but I can't see that far ahead, "Yes, like ten years ago, my family had a membership." (Like, seriously ten years ago.)

We sit down and he drops this bomb. "Well, then you can't use the pass." I'm watching my sisters walk out to the work out floor as he says this, remembering the fact that we rode together, in their car. I mean I guess I can sit outside for an hour in the below freezing temps with an arctic wind blowing in my face. I mean, I guess that's reasonable.

"Are you kidding me?" I demand of the guy. He has yet to be friendly and currently he is glaring at me.

"No, I'm not. The pass is for first time users. People who are really serious about joining." He looks me over. I swallow my vomit. "So you can't use the pass, but you can sign up tonight. All of our specials end tonight."

"The coupon says that your specials end the 31st." I reply, biting my tongue before I say something else.

"The coupons wrong." He says simply. Ok buddy, at this point we both know that you're lying. The coupons wrong? Yea, ok. You're wrong.

"Well, I'm not ready to sign up tonight. I don't even know if I want to join this gym (Especially with you giving me all this unnecessary attitude). I wanted to try it out, see if I liked it. I also have a free pass to Gold's Gym (I didn't actually have one, but I knew they were easily accessible online). I want to compare the two. Understand what I'm paying for." I fold my arms across my chest and give the guy the same mean face he's giving me.

"I can't let you use the pass." He laughs a bitter laugh, like I am too slow to understand him.

"Are you kidding me?" Usually I have a very hard time getting snotty with people. Usually I let them treat me however they feel, and I just smile and return everything with politeness. Not tonight. "I was in high school when I came here before. It was my parents pass. I was a different person back then. I had a different name! I've had two kids since then!!!" My voice is getting all high and squeaky and this guy just looks back at me like there is no way in hell he's going to let me on that work out floor.

"Sorry. This gym hasn't changed in ten years, you don't need to see it." He's not really sorry. And also, if the gym hasn't changed in ten years, maybe it should.... maybe we should see some updates. "What's stopping you from signing up tonight?" Classic pitch question. I wanted to blurt out: You buddy. But I didn't. And really, doesn't he understand the process Zach and I go through before we make a decision? I mean, there is a process... come on.

He then goes into this long pitch about how 24 Fitness is the best, I won't accomplish my goals anywhere else blah blah blah.

Oh, he says, "What is your ultimate goal in joining a gym?" I say, "Ultimately, to get in shape, lose weight, and live a healthier life style." He says, "How do you intend to lose weight?" I say (very snotty might I add), "Well, tonight, I was planning on walking over to those elliptical machines, right over there and doing some nice cardio." This is what he says to me.

"Wrong. That's wrong."

What? Really? It's totally wrong to do cardio? Then why do you have the freaking machines?

I then have to sit through a spiel on how they have physical trainers and nutritionists and partner with Weight Watchers and The Biggest Loser and Shaquille O'neal (Guess what, that's not a selling point to me. Is Shaquille O'neal even still alive?) He goes on and on. And eventually I tell him, "Listen, it comes down to money. I want to get the best deal. Gold's offers this for ten dollars cheaper, a women's only area, unlimited tanning and an unlimited guest pass. (And they are not harassing me! It even says that on their contract, it says no one will harass or intimidate you!)" And then I say, "I am not going to make any decision without talking it over with my husband so you can forget that."

He says, I'm not kidding.... "Call him. Call him right now."
I say, "I don't have my cell phone, it's at home(This was actually the truth.)
He points to his desk phone and walks away.


I try to call Zach, but we all know he doesn't recognize the number, so there is no way he is going to answer his phone. Finally Kylee comes over to see what is taking so long and I use her cell phone, Zach answers. Tells me I'm crazy to make a decision tonight (Something we are in agreement on) and that ultimately it's up to me, but he thinks Gold's would be cheaper.

I hang up the phone because jackass is back and he says, "What did he say?" And I say, "That Gold's is cheaper and a better option for us." He says, "Rachel....(In a very parental and condescending tone) what did we talk about?" I say, "What?" He says, "You're not going to get the results over there that you would here."

I say, "Well I am not making a decision tonight so...."

He says, "Here's what we're going to do. You're going to sign up tonight and pay $25 and work out tonight. If you don't like it, come back tomorrow and get all of your money back. Oh, also, we're going to set you up with a personal trainer tomorrow. Oh also, give me your card?"

"I'm sorry what? What card?"
"The card you're going to use to pay for this."
"Ok Mr. Bully, Here's my card. Take my soul while you're at it." I didn't really say that.

Needless to say, it was um, quite the experience. But I had a super fun time working out. Still undecided if I'll stay or not. I would really, really like to work out with those girls, but that guy kind of made the whole experience a nightmare. I mean isn't he supposed to schmooze me? Sell me on the place. Not intimidate and manipulate me? The thing is I was totally helpless to stop him. Ok, I could have just got up and walked out or yelled at the guy but that's not my style. I was just proud I threw a few snotty zingers his way.

Oh and then he tried to name drop with me because he's from Miami. He tried to use Madonna and Landon Donovan. Yep, those are the two people I look up to the most. Congratulations jackass you hit the nail on the head. Oh wait. That does nothing for me!

So what did I do? I did what I always do. I turned up the sarcasm and made fun of his precious little celebrities. Especially after he pulled out his IPhone and showed me pictures.

Take that Brandon-whatever your name is.


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  1. But he won - because he got your money. What a trip. I would report him to a manager! next time walk out!

  2. fyi... i still love the shaq daddy.

    and if i were you, i would go back into that gym and give that mans manager a piece of your mind. actually, write a letter. a letter is easier, and you don't have to fear some other creep-o intimidating you.

  3. oh my gosh Rach I was ready to get on a plane just to give this guy a piece of my mind!! You should report him so that someone else doesnt have to go through what you went through. It makes me sick he doesnt realize how he came across to you!!!To bad you oculnt have recorded this whole exchange.

  4. I agree with all of you! I felt like I was an elementary child and he was a big bully. But I should update this to say that my mother-in-law called the district manager as soon as she heard the story from my sisters in law and threatened to move her family to Gold's. And then Zach went down immediately the next day to give the service manager a piece of his mind. So the complaints have been made. I am still too afraid to go back alone however. And apparently I'm not the first to go through this guys "application process" Between Zach and his mom the employees shared that this has happened several times. The problem is he is the head manager at that branch. But rest assured, complaints were made!