Workout worries

Melinda Kauffman

It’s a Wednesday afternoon, and you make your way to the Fitness Center to get a hard workout in. You sign yourself in, grab a towel and head towards the row of treadmills, but wait, all of them are taken. It’s fine. You will just hop on one of the ellipticals, because you read in “Men’s Fitness” that those are just as effective. However, not a single one is available and now you’re upset. You specifically set aside 45 minutes of your precious time to get your heart rate up before you have to head off to your 5 p.m. meeting. If this sounds at all like you, you are not alone. The Fitness Center is too crowded, and I am here to tell you that the solution lies within the student body.

The Fitness Center is simply overcrowded. Undergraduates, athletes, law students, faculty and community members all walk into the same fitness center and use the same machines each day. Especially at certain times throughout the day, it is impossible to get a workout in, because too many people are trying to use the facility at the same time. What would really help alleviate some of the congestion is another gym. Whether the new gym is athlete-specific or open to everyone, another space for individuals to work out would free up a lot of space. And if building another gym is not feasible right now, at least a renovation of Doremus would help.

If you are not already aware, plans have been made to renovate the Doremus Gym. While nothing has been set in stone, there is a very small window of time until the plans are finalized. If progress is to be made, the time to act is now. We, as the students of Washington and Lee, have the power to see changes made on our campus, specifically in relation to a problem like the fitness center. Those in charge are more inclined to listen to the concerns of the students than a few coaches concerned about the problem.

The problem of crowdedness in the Fitness Center is not going to go away on its own. No one wants to be in the middle of a workout and be forced to stop, because the entire football team comes storming in and occupies every machine. If you are an athlete, you understand the pressure of having to keep up with your workouts and also facing the daily challenge of going at a time when the machines you need to use are available. As a varsity athlete, I know I often have to go early in the morning when no one is in the gym if I actually want to get anything done. While this works with my schedule, I know it does not for everyone else. And even if you are not an athlete, it is annoying to have an entire team come in and take over all the machines while you are working out.

To avoid this issue, we—the student body — need to tell someone who can do something about it. We need our voices to be heard. We have the right to a fitness center that can handle the amount of traffic that is too much for the current fitness center to handle. Our parents, guardians, friends, etc. pay for us to attend this university, and we deserve to be heard.

So why are you compromising your physical health when you could be getting your maximum workout in a better facility? I hope you found something in this article that will provoke you and other people to do something about the issue of the Fitness Center. Don’t suffer any longer. Do something about it.