We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
one reason it's so difficult is you feel like hell if you are exercising with an injury, and you look like Jabba the Hutt if you are out of shape, and (in my gym) you see your botoxed, tucked and worked-on, always-working-out neighbours, from the last thirty years, and they all look in WAY better shape so you hunker down and hope your own baggy gym clothes will camouflage you (your friends last saw you in gym clothes when you were a lithe runner). So it's a PRIDE issue...
But it IS worth it because even if you are a pathetic physical specimen compared to your youthful self, you still get that exercise high after working up a sweat. Unlike BD, I'm a believer in aerobic exercise until you feel as if you are going to drop dead or pass out, for at least thirty minutes. Improves mood.
I've been going to various gyms on 3 continents for the last 15 years (off and on).
The only one where most of the people were young and fit was the military gym on Camp Victory, Iraq.
And let me tell you, there were some MONSTERS there. There was this one guy who would do 3 minutes on the jump rope, then sort of this crawling push exercise--10 forward, 10 backward--then back to the jump rope. He did MANY rounds of this the several times I saw him.
But even there there were the rounder folks--some senior military, some reservists, and a lot of the civilians.
Most of the other gyms I've used, ranging from 24hour fitness to community centers etc. had elderly, out of shape and down right obese folks working out.
If you don't want to minimize exposure until you've got your appearance a bit more under control, here's a few tips:
1) Arrange to go off peak hours . I take a "late lunch" so I can go to the gym between 1:30 and 3 PM local time (I actually work 1 time zone west of me, so I really take 12:30 to 2. It helps that I work from home and the gym is across the street). If I miss that and I still have the energy I'll go at 7 or 7:30 in the evening, and it's almost empty. This was also true of the 24 hour fitness gyms, but they tend to be busier in the afternoons, so if that's what you have access to, try to arrange a "early lunch". Maybe start your work day an hour early.
2) You can get a "beginner" weight set--rack, bench, and 160 pounds of bumper plates with bar and clamps for about 10 months of payments to a gym. Throw in a the "Starting Strength" book and 20 bucks worth of puzzle mats, and you can start doing the needful in your garage/basement/back porch. Get your weights on twice a week (at first), and just do long walks (30+ minutes) of increasing speed (and distance) daily until you're almost running every day. Do some sort of movement/calisthenics (especially hitting the hips if you sit a lot) twice a week. By the time you hit the end of the weights you should have lost enough weight to make the gym tolerable. If not, buy 2 more 45 pound plates.
By the time you're dead-lifting 250 and benching over 150, no one at the gym will care how fat you are.
DH and I are the worse offenders of this problem. We belong to a great gym--love the wide, deep competition length pool. The equipment is excellent. It is a 15 minute drive. WTH can't we get there at least 2 xs a week? We get up at 0700, drink coffee, eat a toast (or a treat) then become conscious 2 hours later after we have been on the computer for 2 hours. Any suggestions as to how to get our "lazy ass" outta the house will be much appreciated !