As the beginning of fall semester approaches, I once again had to do a little running around on campus today in an attempt to get a few more things squared away. After a complete waste of time at a campus job fair (side note: I NAILED the newspaper job but am looking for something else to pass the time as well) I decided that it was nigh time I started working on my fitness again.
It was the first time that I made my way into the campus rec center and I must say--I was rather impressed. Firstly, it was nicer than any gym that I'd ever been a member at. In Fort Wayne I was a YMCA member for some time and their facilities were quite nice. I would also go to the gym from time to time with friends at places where they had their memberships, some dumpier than others. But the campus rec center, man...they really put some work into that shit. Secondly, I was incredibly impressed by the variety they have. I think they have two different tracks, one indoor one outdoor, an Olympic sized pool (it's actually one inch smaller than 'Olympic' sized so they don't have to hold any kind of training or special events there), an entire floor of weights, an entire floor of cardio machines (including a line of rowing machines!) and a floor of miscellaneous courts. When I first walked in--I hadn't a CLUE where to go.
I found my way to the locker room and got changed and made my way to the cardio floor. Upon choosing my elliptical machine, I noticed something that wasn't quite present during the days of my past gym-going endeavors. Almost every machine has a television (all including cable network programming) and each machine had a spot to safely dock your iWhatever,
When I was working out before, you watched the TVs provided. If you didn't like the programming, tough. If you wanted to listen to music, you'd better hope your gym pants had pockets or you'd have to invest in one of those fancy armbands.
I flipped to the travel channel to watch 'No Reservations' while safely housing my iPhone in a spot specially designed for it. I had my headphones in, blasting The Creeps, while reading subtitles on the television and texting Dean. If this isn't an example of technology overload--I don't know what is.
Although it seemed like a lot going on at the moment, by the time my workout was complete--I barely even noticed that I had been on the machine for a half an hour. In a world where everyone is becoming increasingly lethargic, lazy, and totally disconnected with the well-being of their own bodies, technology in the gym may not be so bad.
Think about it this way. The reason that so many people don't work out is because they are too caught up in their computers, video games, movies, television shows, so on so forth. With bringing all of these things into the gym, in the palms of our hands while we are doing such mundane tasks as working out, maybe this will increase the possibility of getting more people off of their asses and into these gyms. If you can work out and watch a movie on your phone, or watch television while you sweat off those bad decisions--maybe more people will see that exercise really isn't all that bad, especially when you barely notice that you're doing it.
This could quite possibly be one of the best integrations of technology into modern adult life.