Monday: 19.June.2006

Ultra-Swanky 24 Hour Fitness Club at Lake Shore Towers in Irvine

Paid a visit, yesterday, to the ultra-swanky health club at Lake Shore Towers in Irvine (on Von Karman Ave).

I've always wanted to see what the inside looked like. (Must've driven by it a hundred times.)

The Lake Shore Towers club is a ritz-ier facility than my membership allows, but 24 Hour Fitness is allowing it (temporarily) to help alleviate the inconvenience caused by the current remodeling of my regular club (in Newport Beach).

The place is huge, shaped like a giant airplane hanger (curved ceiling, windows at each end). Contains several levels, with a giant basketball court in the center.

To give you an idea how big it is, there's a 1/8th mile track on the upper level. (Eight trips around make one mile.)

The coolest part was a rock-climbing wall that towers up 40 or 50 feet .. altho I couldn't try that cuz no instructor was present.

continued

Most interesting was a plexiglas "hypoxia" booth (containing a single treadmill) in which the oxygen concentration was lowered to simulate air at 10,000-foot elevation.

An oxygen meter in the booth sported a digital display reading 18.3%. When I exhaled into the sensor, the displayed level dropped. I think the oxygen concentration at sea level is normally 19 or 20%. Air in the mountains is "thinner".

Once you body adapts to the thinner air (in the booth), and you return to an environment that contains normal air, it becomes easier to exercise. You feel stronger .. similar to the experience of athletes who exercise/train in the mountains before a big event.

Yes, I tried out the hypoxia booth .. started getting light-headed and giddy. Kinda chilly in there.

The facility had all the amenities you might expect from a swanky club: free towels, steam & dry saunas (which both really worked), indoor & outdoor Jacuzzis, outdoor swimming pool, outdoor volleyball court (on sand), squash courts, lots of giant TV screens. On yeah, and valet parking. =)

The dumbest thing seemed to be an outdoor putting green. Can't imagine anyone using that. (Golfers would visit a real golf course.)

Anyway, while working out on the upper level, there's another 30-foot of space above you (to the curved ceiling). So you have a wonderful sense of open space during your work-out. I also noticed some machines I'd never seen before.





Posted by Rad at June 19, 2006 07:17 PM

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