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Equipment for the complete home gym

The fees for little local gym that I frequent will go up when my so-called ‘membership’ expires in December. The fee direction is in inverse proportion to the standard of equipment. I got on the solitary horizontal bike yesterday to find that it is basically buggered. The pedals slip every few revolutions, which gives me a fright as well as doing no good to my legs or the prosperity of the gym.

The gym used to have an old-style rowing machine, but that disappeared in favour of two new style rowers in which your legs, arms and bum all slide independently. It feels like being drunk and in charge of a machine. Consequently, I don’t use it.

The gym used to have a leg press but it was sold raise money. Likewise the vertical arm press. They’ve probably both been melted down and turned into car bodies by now.

The ever-increasing lousiness of the equipment plus a disgruntled kookaburra that sometimes perches on the rail outside and bites people on their way in, have decided me to look for another gym.

Public gyms are not hard to find, since the business is in a state of over-supply. Every suburb seems to have at least three; some are part of an international network. And even though gyms regularly go broke, there are always two more to rush in and take their place. Personal trainers are in the same state. They are breeding faster than kangaroos.

I did the rounds of local gyms and discovered a fearsome new creature: the female gym manager. Her body comprises a series of large and small rocks welded together with titanium and coated with flawless tan rubber. She’s intimidatingly tall and invades your personal space as she steps up close and stares into your eyes like an optometrist looking for glaucoma. You can’t lie to her for fear of a terrible death. She doesn’t tell you you’re a weakling but you know she thinks you are.

During my interrogation I couldn’t help wondering about sexual partners for female gym managers. They’d have to be at least Olympic athlete grade men – or maybe women – with six packs you could play like a xylophone and the ability to endlessly re-load.

I’ll join up, but only because I’m scared not to.