One of the best things you can do for yourself while you’re at McDaniel is go to the gym. College in general is not that healthy. In general it entails staying up late working on assignments, eating while you’re doing it, spending copious amounts of time sitting doing work, and let’s face it–glar isn’t all that healthy either. So with the help of donations from the Merritt family, the same Merritt family whose name appears on many fitness centers in the area and most recently on what used to be Academic Hall after yet another generous donation to the school, the school has provided a fantastic fitness center.
I find it best to use the gym between 2 and 4pm on most days. Sports teams usually take over the gym from about 4 to 5:30 on weekdays, so for a nice uninterrupted workout I prefer the earlier hours. Plenty of people choose to use the gym around 8 or 9 though and since the gym stays open until 11 most nights pretty much anyone can find their perfect time to exercise using state-of-the-art equipment that was almost entirely donated to the school by the Ravens when they used to hold their summer practices here.
What I like most about the gym is its relaxed atmosphere, which is aided by the way it’s set up. The cardio and body weight based workout equipment, like medicine balls and yoga mats, are located on the second floor above the weight machines and free weights, so those less inclined to “pump iron” and simply do push ups or crunches are free to do so without feeling intimidated by the muscle meat heads. Oh, and the muscle meat heads are anything but; they actually are probably the least intimidating people in the world. Just the other day I was struggling to finish my last set and one random soccer player came up behind me and coached me through it, helping on the last few inches. I was struggling with a 150 pound bench but he didn’t judge me, so that speaks nicely to the community established at the gym.
Though it may not be the best part of the day, or even a huge part of your life at McDaniel, the gym is absolutely a wonderful part of the many things that McDaniel has to offer. Whether you’re training for a marathon, getting in shape for your sport, or just purely trying to stay healthy and keep your body in peak shape for summer, the gym has what you need. Plus there’s no sense in passing up a free workout!