My First European Gym Experience


i arrived in Belgium yesterday (Saturday) morning and somehow stayed awake until 9pm to try to prevent extended jetlag. My coworker and I explored a little bit via walking in the rain and the metro. 

   

         

Today, I slept until 9am and then got breakfast downstairs.  The buffet was amazing and I am certainly looking forward to starting many more mornings that way.

Overall today was a pretty lazy day for me… I unpacked everything and organized my hotel room, and then decided to go check out the fitness center we get access to as guests. (It’s a “real” gym, not just a hotel gym.)  My experience was a little surprising.

The good parts…

It’s got everything I need. Two gym areas with cardio/weight machines/dumbbells. There’s also a pool (I won’t use) and a lot of instructor-led classes (I hope to make the cycling and yoga classes for sure).

The not-so-great parts…

First off, the smell. Oh. My. God. I mean, this must be what a junior high boys locker room smells like. I think I was in the minority of folks who decided to wear deodorant today. The area I started off in (the bigger gym area) was really awful.  Luckily, I later moved to the smaller area which only had a few people and was much fresher. I plan to stick to the small gym from now on.

The modesty, or lack there of. Okay, so in the US we definitely have some interesting gym-goers, namely those who seem to dress up/put on makeup to take gym selfies and talk on the phone during their “cardio” sesh. And, of course, the guys checking the selves out flexing in the mirror. But Jesus, I will take those people who care a bit too much about how they look, over the folks I spent the afternoon with.  Old men, young men, whatever, super hairy, walking around with only a towel or in their underwear! A lady was lounging at the INDOOR pool with nothing under her robe (unfortunately I know this for certain because she wasn’t very careful with her positioning). There were “motivational” pictures posted throughout the gym that were very revealing or straight up nude. Ew! 

Sanitation. The equipment was filthy and old, as if the gym relies solely on the members to “wipe down” the machines and weights and does not ever clean anything themselves. I definitely wanted a shower immediately after leaving, and not because of my own workout! I also saw several people with only socks or completely barefoot. So gross and unsanitary.

I’m definitely thankful I have a full-sized fitness center at my disposal, but I will not miss my European gym experience!  Currently sitting in my hotel room and enjoying the view (and breeze) from my window. 

   

 

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