Local Experience: Gold’s Gym

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Rachel Brandenburg has her own intro below but I wanted to make sure I included mine for her as well. If I’m going to try a diet or workout regime, I typically will always ask Rachel what she thinks because 9 times out of 10 she has done/researched it. You can typically find her traveling with her very crafty husband Matt (a local business owner who makes things out of wood at @upstaterepurposed), doing outdoorsy things in/around Greenville or taking pictures of her cute dog. It’s unfortunate that on a blog you can’t hear Rachel laugh, because she has the best one I’ve ever heard.
She probably should start a podcast. In the meantime, you can follow her here at @rachelbrandenburg_fit.
-Courtney

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Hi guys! I know most of you reading this don’t know me, so I thought I would introduce myself and let you know about my health journey so far before jumping into my first review. I’m so excited! My name is Rachel Brandenburg, obligatory self-promotion @rachelbrandenburg_fit, and I am passionate about being healthy. That’s right, I’m not passionate about six-pack abs and macro counting. I’m passionate about being strong, healthy and happy in my skin and I want everyone else to be able to have that, too!

This may sound weird as there seems to be two categories of “health” people out there- the elite fit and the love yourselfers. Well, my mindset is very much in between those two places. I was very active through high school and college, so I never really had to think about what was being put in my mouth or if I exercised that day. After college, I married my super cool, talented husband, who still has the metabolism of a growing, teenage guy somehow and I quickly found out that I do not. That was not fun. I put on weight. I felt bad about myself. I felt lethargic. All those glorious things.

So, I started to try EVERYTHING. Seriously. It’s still a joke among my friends how many fitness scams I fell for. After the diet pills, teas, shrink wraps, and whatever else didn’t work, I tried this crazy new idea called eating healthy and exercise! It has changed my life. I’m still a work in progress and have goals for my bod’s strength, looks, and general athletic performance, but I’ve learned so much about figuring out what works for yourself and not falling into the trap of just trying what is currently being shoved down your throat by marketers! I want to share that with you all by doing the work of trying these places out for you so that you can make an educated decision on where you want to try out and join. Your time is precious right?! Leave it to the crazy girl who loves trying new gyms to do the leg work for ya!

I see that a handful of the reviews on the blog are for specialized gyms- which I love- but I thought I would start out with something more traditional for all those that don’t want to spend half their paycheck on a gym membership! Here we go!

WHAT:

Gold’s Gym

This is really your traditional gym structure. There is a cardio equipment section, resistance machine section, and a free weights section.

WHERE:

There are several locations, but I visited the location on South Pleasantburg Drive across from Home Depot.

1332 S. Pleasantburg Dr. Greenville, SC 29605

COST:

One visit free pass

$39.99/month with a 90 day contract and month to month payments after that.

There are more expensive membership packages available as well, but this one really has everything you need.

THE PERKS:

This place really does have a bunch to offer.

  • They have childcare! Kids Club is open Monday-Friday 8 am- 1 pm and 3 pm-9pm, Saturday 9am-3pm, and Sunday 1pm-4pm.
  • There is an indoor pool, sauna, and hot tub available.
  • If you don’t like working out by yourself all the time, they have lots of classes available. Everything from barre to yoga to boot camp to sculpt! There are more specialized classes that only come with the more expensive membership packages as well.
  • They keep the entry area stocked full of healthy snacks, drinks, and a smoothie bar. I know other places have this as well, but I was truly impressed with their selection.
  • The locker room is extremely clean and spacious. Taking a shower and getting ready for your day after hitting the gym would not be a problem here.
  • The selection of dumbbells, racks, resistance bands, kettlebells, etc. was great. I was also very impressed by the wide range of equipment available- TRX, wall balls, kettlebells, an actual power rack!
  • Lastly, when you use your free pass, they don’t prey on you like hungry lions trying to get you to join! This was an awesome change of pace for me. They are more than happy to answer your questions and sign you up if you would like, but they won’t blow up your phone every hour for the next six months trying to get your money.

THINGS OF NOTE:

  • I tend to enjoy high intensity workouts which is not the general feel of the free weights section. It is very much your typical gym environment where everyone stares at themselves in the mirror while doing slow, calculated reps. Which is totally cool! Just depends on what you like.
  • There are personal trainers available if you would like to use them. I did see a couple working with people. Generally, the trainers that I’ve seen at national gyms like this don’t seem to put a ton of effort into their clients. I would recommend getting workouts elsewhere rather than paying extra for a trainer here.

PRO TIP:

  • They do offer week long passes on occasion. When you go in to use your free pass, ask if you can do a week! If nothing else, you may get a few extra day passes!

Check out their full website and locations here:

https://www.goldsgym.com/

Local Love: Compost House

I have been spending more time in Spartanburg lately and had the chance to meet Leslie Rodgers, the Education Director and Compost House Coordinator. We spent well over an hour sitting at The Crepe Factory downtown talking (mostly) trash. And it was awesome.

Compost House is a part of Atlas Organics, which is a local company that handles the commercial collection of food waste. (Did you know some of your favorite local spots like Swamp Rabbit Cafe & Grocery use them and compost their waste?) Compost House is the residential component of Atlas.

There are two different ways you can compost with Compost House. They offer a door-step collection, with weekly or bi-weekly options starting at $16 per month. Or you can take your 5 gallon compost bucket to one of their many drop-off locations once a week for $14/month. What is really cool is that once a month you get 10 gallons of super nutrient rich finished compost to use in your garden (or gift to a friend who gardens) once a month!

So I live in Travelers Rest and am married to a hippie who is very green. Let’s just say we already have a serious composting operation going on. When Leslie offered me a free month of the door-step service it didn’t make sense for me in particular, but then entered Hazel.

This is Hazel the puppy.

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Hazel lives in a one bedroom apartment in downtown Greenville with her owner, who was a complete newbie to all things composting. I was curious to see how composting and the pick-up itself would go over in an apartment with secure access, that had limited space and with Hazel, who has a track record for tearing apart all kinds of inanimate objects. (But is really cute, so it’s okay.) 

A few weeks into the service and Hazel’s owner reported back that the entire system is extremely easy. The Do’s and Don’ts of what to put in the buckets are clearly labeled on the outside. One of them fits easily under the sink. It doesn’t smell. Pick up has been effortless. And the big one–Hazel has not gotten into the buckets or even been mildly interested in them.

If composting is still a little scary, go read the great reviews over at Greenville360 and Kidding Around Greenville. Then go be a greener person and support local by signing up!

— Courtney

Local Love: Liability Brewing Co.

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Got a sneak peek of Liability Brewing Co. this week, which will be one of the anchor spots at the historic Westone development (you drive by it all the time on Stone Avenue but is easy to miss right now unless you used to frequent the old Battery & Electric Company). Joining Liability will be a second Coffee Underground location and a Moe’s Original Bar B Q. The last spot is still up for grabs.
Beer, coffee, BBQ– a Southern grand trifecta. All in one great spot within walking distance to downtown.
I love the bones of this building and am looking forward to see Terry Horner’s vision come to life. And of course, I am all about another great brewery coming to Greenville.
Side note: this is my new favorite tee, locally made by The Graphic Cow, another company I think is awesome. It is super soft, fits like a dream and you want to be able to say you were rocking this before anyone else was, so head to Liability’s site and pick up yours!

 

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