I've always been averse to gyms: I never had a plan, I didn't know how to use machines or lift properly, and they're filled with judgy swole-bros that get on my nerves and make me insecure. Running worked to keep me in shape for a while, but after a back injury I ended up just being lazy and out of shape. Enter The Queer Gym. I'm three months in, and I'm in the best shape of my life.
- love the class sizes; at 6-12 people, they're big enough that you've got a bunch of other homies to work out with, and small enough that the trainers can keep an eye on your form.
- I appreciate how responsive the trainers - Rose and Kendra - are to how the class is going; they aren't afraid to increase or decrease reps or sets depending on how much we're getting our butts kicked. Plus, there's wiggle room within each class for all ability levels; you can go hard if you want, but there isn't a culture of "you're only doing it right if you feel like you're gonna die." It's also clear they put a lot of thought and reflection into planning workouts for us, and are genuinely excited to see all of us make progress. It feels like they'd teach these classes for free because they have fun doing it, and that energy and enthusiasm is infectious.
- You definitely aren't paying Planet Fitness prices, but the unlimited classes and attentive training is more than worth the price tag. For me, it's more motivation to go 3+ times a week to really get my money's worth!
Lastly, as a cisgender straight male, The Queer Gym has been amazing at welcoming and including me in a space that really shouldn't be mine. We live our daily lives in a hetero-normative, male-dominated world, and to enter a space where the norms are love, support, camaraderie, and unabashed queer swagger is such a necessary piece of perspective, one that any man, any straight person, or any cisgender person can learn a lot from. There are shared experiences many of the LGTBQ members of the gym have that I don't share, and it really puts into perspective the idea that I live 99% of my life in the dominant demographic. How I feel in this one brief moment is how my LGTBQ friends may feel every day at work, or watching TV, or reading the news. This is not to say I feel excluded at The Queer Gym, because I have experienced nothing but kindness in my three months as a member. It just provides a welcome reminder of my own privileges, and allows me to be the best ally I can to the LGTBQ community I care so deeply for.
TL;DR version: It's fun as hell, it'll get you in great shape, you'll be among the best damn people on the planet, and heteros can come too!