Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The brand new INSEAD gym

After climbing three flights of stairs (and wondering if that wasn’t enough already), and after being faced by the most unfriendly member of the INSEAD – catering admin staff (who plainly told us it was really not her job to do the subscriptions for the gym), we took a deep breath and decided to join the new INSEAD-gym.
After the stairs and the lack of smiles, there was one more incentive to join : a promotion ! For just 11 Euro. you could join for two weeks. C, one of the partners, tried (with a lot of friendly determination) to explain that there was such a thing as « the break » next week – was there no price we could pay for just one week ? « No, not possible. » said the unfriendly catering admin lady. And you really didn’t want to argue with her.

So there we were, on Monday afternoon, with our new membership and with exactly one week (for the price of two) to try it out ! Determined to get our money out of this crappy deal, some of us drove straight to Decathlon to buy a new sport outfit :-)
We’ve been in the gym every single day since – let me enlighten you with some insiders’ information.

- The new gym looks splendid : they’ve changed all the equipment , and the cardio machines have TV-screens. The changing rooms have everything you need : lockers, private showers with soap and shampoo, hairdryers, etc. The sauna and steam room are not ready yet, but look promising (although I think they’re way too small, and are quickly going to be overcrowded). There are free towels, a drinking fountain and daily newspapers. So all’s perfect, right ? Euhm, yeah, except for the 25°C temperature in the gym……
When I asked whether there was an airco, and if it could be turned on, I (and others) got this answer : « the system needs two weeks to find out what the right temperature is for the room, and then it will be ok. » ?????!!!!!!!
- Hours to avoid the gym : lunch hour (roughly between 12 and 13 pm. During these hours, the gym is packed with INSEAD staff, who seem to be thrilled to have found yet another excuse to have even longer lunch breaks than before.
- About the classes : there’s a girl who gives really good Pilates and Step classes, I can recommend those( but beware : classes are entirely in French !). Most of the other classes however are (temporarily ?) given by what seems to be an intern, and the poor guy really hasn’t got a clue….Yesterday, during « Abdo-fessiers », we were doing side steps for like 5 minutes. After that, he had to check his notes to see what was coming next : again side steps, but now with a swinging arm movement. Well, the female INSEAD staff seems to like him, as I heard them talking about him in the changing room today : « Il est mignon le petit nouveau » (as in "He’s cute the little new guy").
- The gym staff. Very friendly in general! A big blond lady is clearly in charge. She’s French, but wants to sound English. So when leaving the gym, you are showered with : « bye you guys, cheers, hope you had a good work out, see yah, cheers. »

And with these goodbyes, I leave you to discover it all yourselves !

1 comment:

carolina said...

hahaha! loved, loveddd reading your article! i am thinking of joinign the gym; but after such great detailed account; and the unfriendly faces; i might join else where! afterall; mixing work with pleasure? maybe not ideal! thanks so much for your insight; trully hilarious