Choosing a Health Club on Indianapolis’s West Side

You’ve finally decided you want to lose some weight and get into better shape, and that requires working out. So how on earth do you find the right place to workout? Picking the right gym can be a fairly daunting task, especially when you know you’re going to have to face a team of sales people when you walk into a facility and they are going to do everything they can to get you to join *their* gym.

Well, if you live in or near the west side of Indianapolis, I have done the hard part for you: I’ve already done the research. While the first thing we tend to think about in terms of gym memberships is cost, really it should be one of the last things. No matter how inexpensive a gym is, if it doesn’t have what you personally need it won’t be worth the money you pay for it. Especially if you end up not using the gym and your monthly membership fees are still being paid like clockwork. The perfect gym for you will be in the right location and offer the facilities and services that interest you most.

So, first, think about what type of workout is it that you want to do? Lift weights? Run on a treadmill? Swim laps? Cardio kickboxing classes? All of the above? Then think about what extras you need: lockers, showers, cafÃ?©, childcare while you workout, personal training, and the like. Keep these things in mind as we look at the gyms on Indianapolis’s west side.

Let’s talk facilities first. There are different types of gyms from the huge that offer every conceivable service to smaller ones that specialize. The smaller gyms offer you just the basics at very reasonable prices. If all you need is basic weight and cardio equipment so you can sweat it out and head for home, one of these gyms is for you. Many of these smaller gyms will also offer personal training services and some have group classes available. These gyms include Cardinal Fitness with 4 west side locations including one in Avon and one in Brownsburg, 21st Century Fitness in Brownsburg, and Fitness Unlimited.

In the category of all-inclusive gyms you have your choice between Bally Totally Fitness, Heathplex Sports Club, the National Institute of Fitness and Sport (NIFS), and The Tower Club. Yes, these clubs have the typical weights and cardio equipment, but they also boast lots of extras that make trips the gym more enjoyable and more practical. Examples are childcare services, a cafÃ?©, pools, saunas, greater variety of fitness classes, sports leagues, nutrition counseling, and more. If you’re looking for a gym that caters to your every possible fitness whim and are willing to pay extra for those treats, on of these gyms is for you.

The table below shows the services offered by each of these clubs. Note that a $ means an additional charge.

Services of West Side Health clubs Service 21st Century Fitness Bally Total Fitness Cardinal Fitness Fitness Unlimited Healthplex NIFS Tower Club Group Fitness Classes x x x x x x x Basketball court x x x Walking Track x x x Pool x x Sports Leagues x x Childcare x $ x x x x Cafe x Sauna x x x x Whirlpool x x X Steam room x x x Massage $ $ Nutrition Counseling $ $ $

Ok, so now you have an idea of which gym has what you are looking for, it is time to think about location. If you pick a gym that is inconvenient, you will be far too tempted to skip your workout. So review the locations of the gyms above. Cardinal has many locations around Indianapolis, so it could be the perfect option for you. Or maybe one of these gyms is centrally located between your home and where you work. Think strategically and consider traffic in addition to distance from home.

By now, you should be able to easily identify your top 3 choices. Now it’s time to face those teams of sales people at the gym and see what kind of deals they offer you and get the best price!

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