Let me begin by stating that I am not an athletic person. I once joined a gym just to use their tanning bed and don't even own a pair of sweatpants. Up until last month when the David Barton Gym extended me a month free membership, my workouts generally consisted of lifting champagne glasses at fashion parties and my cardio squeezing into skinny jeans.
Inspired by the beach weather, I decided to give it a go. I figured I'd sculpt by abs while scoping out the other hot bodies working out. As any gay man knows, the gym is the best place to meet men and David Barton may as well be the gay match.com.
I would venture to say that David Barton's Astor Place location is the second gayest gym in the city, after the Chelsea location. If any proof is needed, within one week I worked out next to Alan Cumming and shared the locker room with Lorenzo Martone, Marc Jacob's ex.
One month later, I don't have any romantic encounters to report, though my biceps are larger and I have a newfound appreciation for athletic exertion. In fact, this past month of working out has inspired an entire lifestyle change.
Normally there has to be money or a venti coffee waiting for me to wake up before 10 a.m., but on my first day I couldn't wait to make the 7:15 a.m. yoga class. And that was just the beginning. I became so infatuated with the gym that during Fashion Week I skipped a whole day of shows to work out and get my head back together.
I don't think any old gym could have inspired this dedication. David Barton feels more like a chic club than a place to sweat and shower. The Astor Place gym is spacious and sexy with vaulted ceilings, mood lighting and mirrors only interrupted by gothic staircases and windows looking out onto streets below. Just being there makes you feel cooler by association.
As a freelance editor and stylist, I do most of my work from my tiny apartment. Going to the gym gives me another place to be and the social interaction of being around other people keeps me from starting conversations with myself.
Most recently, David Barton joined with Svedka Vodka to offer boot camp training classes that culminate in a cocktail hour. I may never go to another fashion party again.