McCann: The Future Looks Bright, But the Current Situation...Not So Much
“Marist has embarked on a new building project which will replace the old fitness center and grey gym area of McCann. The new facility will more than double the amount of fitness and recreational space available. This project is slated to take about 18 months to complete, so for the 2018-2019 academic year Marist has taken steps to ensure there is adequate work-out space for all students,” says an email sent to all Marist College students on August 10. But is it really true that all students will be accomodated?
With construction now underway, there’s been a bit of a change to the access that students have to the gym. While McCann is being rebuilt, there’s a smaller “tent” gym for students to use. But here’s the catch: it’s only open for non-athletes from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m., which is definitely not ideal.
For those of us who use the gym regularly, this is a little bit of a challenge to our usual fitness routines. As someone who loves to workout in the mornings, I’m left at a bit of a loss for what to do now that I can’t access the gym until nighttime.
Yes, it is true that we have other options. There’s the Building D Fitness Center, which essentially has only cardio machines, or the Marketplace Fitness Center, which has stacked-plate weight machines. But neither of those compare to the equipment that is available in the temporary McCann center.
It’s difficult to get the same workout with a machine as you could with squat racks and barbells. It feels entirely different. Many of us, myself included, aren’t satisfied with our morning workout options being only treadmills or ellipticals. For me, it’s hard to get motivated to work out after a long day of classes and homework, especially when it starts getting dark at 6:30 p.m. Not to mention the numerous benefits of exercising in the morning, both physically and mentally.
But what about the students who have night class or don’t want to work out at midnight? What about those who hate cardio? Or those who only have time to exercise in the middle of the day?
So although Marist promised an “adequate workout space for all students,” I’m a little bit confused.
I’m not saying that I’m not happy about the updates to McCann, because believe me, I am. I know that the new gym will be worth all the hassle. It’s understandable that athletes need the gym to themselves throughout the day—it would be a safety hazard to allow regular students in the small space at the same time—and they deserve to have a place to practice. It’s true that there are other options for students across campus, but they’re just not the most ideal. Marist seems to be doing its best to accommodate everyone, but maybe there’s more that could be done.
Maybe the gym could open a few hours earlier for non-athletes, or a few hours in the morning could be dedicated to regular students. Weights could even be added in the Building D Fitness Center, rather than just having the cardio machines.
As the year goes on, the temporary situation probably won’t seem as annoying as it does now. I’m sure others feel the same way, and changing one’s gym routine really isn’t as big of a deal as I’m making it out to be, but it’s still just really inconvenient. Maybe if enough students voice their unhappiness with the current setup, Marist will eventually end up making changes to the temporary hours—or maybe we’ll just have to deal with it.
The new gym is surely going to be worth the wait, worth the time, and worth the pain of having to workout at 10 p.m. I’m grateful that Marist is willing to put in the effort to renovate a building that benefits so many students while attempting to accommodate as many people as they can in the process. As someone who hates change, this new schedule is definitely going to take some getting used to. But in the meantime, we could maybe get some more weights in the Building D Fitness Center.