Any place to exercise while reading MeFi in Northern Virginia?
April 8, 2007 12:05 PM   Subscribe

Where can I find a fitness center where I can jog/bike/elliptical while browsing the internet? I live in Clifton (Centreville, Northern Virginia), I can drive as necessary. I don't want to bring bulky equipment into the house unless it's really the only option. Convenience (driving distance, hours of operation, not having to fight over equipment) is more of a factor then price.
posted by anaelith to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think you would have much better luck bringing a laptop and finding a way to fasten it to the machine than finding one where this is already set up...
posted by baking soda at 12:39 PM on April 8, 2007

Response by poster: baking soda: I've thought about that, but it seems to have some major problems: Internet connection (or lack thereof). My laptop is a bit of a brick, so it would need some serious support. And I don't want to stick out that much (I know, I know, they only notice if you get between them and the mirror, but hell, I'm shy).
posted by anaelith at 12:50 PM on April 8, 2007

My gym [Lifetime Fitness] in Texas has wireless throughout the building. I did see a guy on the treadmill one morning with his notebook. I don't know if he was watching a movie or browsing the internet. If the notebook fell of the magazine stand he had it on it would have been bye bye notebook. I only saw that once. You could probably set a notebook on the handlebars on a excercyle but you'd need to keep the RPMs low enough not vibrate it off. Most people who use the wireless do so in the cafe or sitting in the waiting area.

I tend to do cardio at a high enough heart rate where I just couldn't read a page on a notebook -- or even the newspaper. Let alone do something more interactive than pushing the next button on my iPod. I know doing some exercise is better than no exercise but I tend to think I can do that somewhere else.

How about doing a good cardio session just watching TV or listening to the iPod. Then cool down afterwards in the cafe and surf the web. Your metabolism is still cranked so just sitting there reading is going to be better for you than if you hadn't worked out first.

There appears to be an LTF in Centreville.
posted by birdherder at 1:26 PM on April 8, 2007

Response by poster: Thanks birdherder. I'm mostly interested in endurance, rather then exercising at a very high heart rate, so I would like something where I can crawl along for a long time. This should be slow enough that I can read (for a while at least) while still raising my heart rate enough to benefit. (And yes, I get other types of exercise, too, but they're all interesting unlike jogging.)

Music/radio just doesn't occupy my mind enough and I can't cope with audio books (I'm not sure why, I love to read, but give me an audio book, even of something I've already read, and I loose the plot five minutes in). TV is mostly either boring, annoying, or addictive (and I don't want to get sucked in since I don't even have a TV at home).

Before someone asks, going outside is also something I consider boring... And yes, I know I'm picky, but there's no use sitting around wondering if such a dream exists when I can ask, right?
posted by anaelith at 4:03 PM on April 8, 2007

Response by poster: Edit: I love to read, like I said, but reading a book while exercising seems like it would actually be more difficult then reading from the laptop (given a proper setup), especially since I'm nearsighted and you can't bump up the text size in a book.
posted by anaelith at 4:07 PM on April 8, 2007

reading a book while exercising seems like it would actually be more difficult then reading from the laptop

Do you have an MP3 player? Books on tape! Or, This American Life podcast. Or MetaFilter podcast! Or anything else you're into.
posted by Brittanie at 8:45 PM on April 8, 2007

Response by poster: Brittanie: Thanks, but like I said I just can't cope with audio books. I like to blame it on having survived the public school system (and my relatives)--if I hear a spoken voice I start tuning out and looking for power point slides to skim off of...
posted by anaelith at 7:32 AM on April 9, 2007

Best answer: The gym in the Worldgate mall in Herndon used to have internet terminals on the exercise bikes a few years ago. Might be worth a call to see if they still do. Try it before you sign up for a was pretty crappy back when I was there (c. 2000), but hopefully has improved.
posted by jewzilla at 8:35 AM on April 10, 2007

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