Anytime Fitness Review (From A Bodybuilder!)

Me and my boys have been regularly going to anytime fitness since June of 2020 right as the gyms reopened. We had never been to one before, but once we went, we never went anywhere else- and for good reason. Here’s my Anytime Fitness Review!

If you don’t have time to read the whole article, here’s what you need to know. Overall, Anytime Fitness is a great place to go. The prices can be medium ranged, but overall you get a great selection of free weights, machines, and workout programs. Plus, there is good staff, and policies in place to make sure Anytime Fitness is well maintained across all franchises. It’s a great choice, even if it is lackluster compared to other gyms.

But now, let’s get into it!

Anytime Fitness Review, a picture of Anytime Fitness
Anytime Fitness Review, a picture of Anytime Fitness

The Important Part of The Anytime Fitness Review (hours, convenience, features)

Let’s just cover the important part of this Anytime Fitness Review right away.

I’m sure we all know no matter what that most gyms will be sufficient enough to work out in. But let’s cover the big things, that actually separate Anytime Fitness from other gyms out there.

Here are some great things about Anytime Fitness right away:

  • Fairly moderately priced, not expensive.
  • 24/7 gym.
  • Showers, bathrooms.
  • Great free weight/machine selection.
  • Gyms are usually pretty chill with rules (there’s no lunk alarm)
  • Membership works at any Anytime Fitness location, so you can sign in to gyms across the country.
  • Good social aspect (I’ve never had a gym so focused on their club members before)

And here are some bad things:

ALWAYS Visit Your Local Anytime Fitness First

I will preface this entire anytime fitness review by saying you NEED to visit your local anytime fitness first before even thinking of joining.

As far as I know, all anytime fitness locations offer a free 7 day pass that allows you to visit the gym for 7 days straight and see how you like it.

Truth is, since Anytime Fitness is a franchise, things can be wildly different from location to location. I had one Anytime Fitness try to charge me $80/month and was like 10 square feet wide and had barely any free weights.

So visit your local Anytime Fitness and see how they have it set up there. I will say though, overall, Anytime Fitnesses are pretty solid all around. I’ve been to many and they usually aren’t bad.

But again, check your local Anytime Fitness. Because you might walk in and find a 5,000 square foot palace that rivals any gym in California, or you might find a 3 square foot den with one dumbbell with a spider web on it.

Great Free Weight Selection

A problem I had with SNAP Fitness was that it seemed inconsistent with free weight/power rack availability.

Comparatively, Anytime Fitness has always had a great free weight selection.

I know this largely depends on location, but in my area, the three closest SNAP Fitnesses had a very poor amount of free weights and power racks. In fact, only one had a power rack- and that’s if you wanted to call it that. They barely had any weight to put on it and it looked like the cheapest version of a power rack you could get.

And that was across the three closest locations. Sure, they had a good dumbbell selection- but the primary focus was just machines and cardio stuff in the gym.

And I mean I get it, the target audience of gyms is people that want to just lose weight or stay in shape. Most of the audience doesn’t include bodybuilders or people trying to put on a TON of mass like I am.

Regardless, SNAP Fitness found itself lacking, meanwhile the Anytime Fitness locations I’ve been to have had sufficient power racks and free weights.

The Anytime Fitnesses I’ve Been To Have ALL Had Free Weights

I don’t want to slam SNAP Fitness too hard, but 2/3 gyms NOT having any free weights is a little suspicious.

Meanwhile, the four Anytime Fitnesses I’ve been to have all had free weights. While one gym only had a small power rack, it was still something.

Again, while this does differ location to location, it seems pretty promising that most Anytime Fitnesses have a selection of free weights.

My main Anytime Fitness has two power racks and two specific bench press racks. Which isn’t “great” necessarily, but it definitely gets the job done. And this usually gives you room to share the gym with other people.

Good Dumbbell Selection

This is pretty consistent across all gyms, but I did want to clarify that Anytime Fitness does have a good dumbbell selection. In my experiences, all of them have had dumbbells that go up to 120 lbs.

Tons of Weight Plates

Something I’ve also noticed is that there are tons of weight plates. I mentioned earlier that the SNAP Fitnesses I’ve been too have been lacking and usually might not have enough weight for people to be using the free weights.

But for some reason, there has always been a big surplus of free weights at the Anytime Fitnesses I’ve been to. Like, way too much weight.

In fact, me and my buddies decided to screw around a bit and load up 7 plates of 45 lbs on each side of the leg press and try to press it. (You’d be surprised what a few teens with low IQ can figure out when it comes to being in a gym alone)

So we literally had 14 plates of 45 lbs each, and there were still tons of 45s left over for other people to use. So we literally didn’t interfere with them at all with our stunt.

Bottom Line? This Is A Gym That is ‘Bodybuilder’ Friendly

This is definitely a gym that is bodybuilder/powerlifter friendly. I am glad to share in this anytime fitness review that if free weights are important to you (such as if you’re using the best program ever made, Arnold’s Blueprint to Mass) you will be just fine here.

Great Machine Selection

I know many bodybuilders are against machines, but I’m not.

And for what it’s worth, Arnold Schwarzenegger has said recently that we shouldn’t be afraid of machines in the gym, especially the modern ones. He said they can provide the same resistance with less risk of injury- which is always nice.

Obviously, free weights should be the focus of your workout so you can keep your stabilizer muscles in shape.

But there’s nothing wrong with machines, and Anytime Fitness does have great machine selection.

Weight-Resistance Machines Are Great

Getting the right machine balance can be tough. It seems every season the people who make bodybuilding programs just start tossing in new machines all the time.

But, generally, all of the Anytime Fitnesses I’ve been to have what I call ‘the essentials’.

These essentials include: leg extension, hamstring curl, bicep machine, tricep extension, skullcrusher machine, pectoral flys, lat pulldown, cable machine.

I mean, simply put- those are the necessities. Those are what you NEED to have a good physique and are cornerstones of any workout program.

Sure, having additional machines like a shoulder press or individual lat pulldown is nice, but they aren’t required.

But that brings me into my next point, Anytime Fitness seems to have very specialized machines and a great selection at that.

Great Variety and Selection in Machines

Honestly, I was surprised some of those machines even existed.

My Anytime Fitness had a squat-assist machine, rowing machine (not like a normal one though, it’s hard to explain), glute curl machines, calf machines, different variations of chest machines, different shoulder machines, etc.

Overall, it seems that Anytime Fitness has a good idea of what machines people like and give a great variety of them.

I found that at some of my other gyms, while they had the essentials, it was very limited from that point on. There wasn’t much else people could use, but Anytime Fitness gave a ton of variety.

My favorite is the calf machine. It isn’t the normal one you load weight on and do calf raises with, it’s like a calf extension machine. You can feel your calves being worked out and it’s super easy to setup.

Cardio Machines

If you’re someone looking for the cardio machines in this Anytime Fitness review, here we are.

They have FANTASTIC cardio machines. As someone coming from SNAP Fitness and other gyms, Anytime Fitness has by FAR had the best cardio machines available.

A lot of the old cardio machines I used were far outdated and a lot of them barely worked or were super noisy.

In my experience, at the different Anytime Fitnesses I’ve been to, they have a great variety of cardio machines and they work phenomenally.

I’ve seen ellipticals, standard treadmills, stair-steppers, resistance cardio machines, and bicycle cardio machines. Needless to say, no matter your interest, Anytime Fitness has you covered.

Bottom Line of The Machines in The Anytime Fitness Review

The bottom line, the machines are good. These definitely aren’t bad machines that barely do anything, it seems Anytime Fitness has done their research and know what they’re doing.

Good Social Outreach

I’ve actually never been at a gym that does care so much about their members.

I’m a bodybuilder at heart, and always will be. You can see I’ve been writing for this blog for a very, very long time and I’ve had different gym memberships throughout those times.

But I’ve never seen a gym care so much about their members other than Anytime Fitness. SNAP Fitness didn’t really do much, and the other gyms I’ve been too haven’t really done anything either.

But at every Anytime Fitness I’ve been too they have a list of most active members, workout programs for free, they interview members at the gym, etc.

Bottom line is, if you’re looking for a gym that is more involved with its’ members, Anytime Fitness is great for that.

Private Bathrooms and Showers

Private bathrooms and showers are super important to me, which is why I am covering it in this Anytime Fitness review.

When you’re at the gym, you can get really sweaty. And if you’ve read my post about Certain Dri, you’ll know I personally get SUPER sweaty.

It’s great to be able to shower before leaving the gym and going to school or work. And sometimes people just like privacy. I might be an ‘ALPHA MALE’ of a guy, but I definitely do not prefer to shower with other men.

Point is, I like privacy- and I’m glad Anytime Fitness grants that option for its’ members.

Relaxed Rules

Look, I’ve been at some strict gyms. Planet fitness has an alarm if you’re too loud, I’ve had rules at other places that ban deadlifting and other stuff.

Anytime Fitness is pretty relaxed. And I do understand that sometimes, there should be rules. I’ve had situations where people are screaming at the top of their lungs in the gym or even getting in fights- which is why it is important to have some rules in place.

But overall, Anytime Fitness really doesn’t have dumb rules. Most of them are pretty simple, don’t be screaming and don’t be an idiot basically. There’s no lunk alarm that’s going to go off if you try to put some weight down, and you aren’t going to be screamed at for grunting loud either.

While they do have rules that are enforced (and for good reason), overall you don’t have to worry about being kicked out for stupid things.

Any Anytime Fitness Location Works

My favorite part of this anytime fitness review is how you can use the key basically anywhere in the country.

I travel a lot, so being able to go to the Anytime Fitness down the street from the hotel is incredible.

Missing a workout is bad for me. Not because of the physical muscle I could be losing, but because my mental health will get bad. Working out keeps me in line and keeps my sanity.

When you’re traveling, things can get REALLY stressful. So it’s important to be able to have some release. Working out is that release for me.

So knowing that even if I go to say Wisconsin on a trip, I can find an Anytime Fitness there I can get my workout done.

Plus, if for some reason you find yourself hating the people at your gym (trust me, I don’t have all fans) you can always just go to a different location free of charge.

24/7 Gyms

Okay, did I say that the global keyfob was my favorite part of the anytime fitness review? Honestly, I like that the gym is 24/7 even more.

Being an entrepreneur, student, and family man- things are just tough to plan around.

It’s hard for me to get to a gym during normal hours. I really like the flexibility that if my wife is angry at me and yells at me for a few hours I can go to the gym once we work out the problem.

Or, if the kid is crying and you need to take care of him, your workout won’t be interrupted- because you can just leave an hour later.

Simply put, it’s just too difficult to go to a gym that is within ‘normal hours’ for someone like me. I don’t work a 9-5.

And I think many people out there also in the medical profession (such as EMTs, Nurses, Doctors, any first responders) will understand that the hours can be crazy and unpredictable.

So why let our workout be interrupted? (And working out really helps calm my PTSD, so no matter what, with the 24/7 gym, I am able to find a good release)

The Ugly of The Anytime Fitness Review

So I know that I’ve said so far that Anytime Fitness is really good. And honestly, they are. I really like most of what they do, but there are some downsides.

Membership Cancellation is HORRIBLE.

Well, this isn’t something unique to Anytime Fitness at all. Every gym basically has really stupid membership cancellation policies, and they always make it super hard to cancel the membership.

Does that excuse it though? No, not at all. In fact, SNAP Fitness tried to charge me $50 when I canceled my membership with them. Unfortunately for them, I literally had no money for them to even charge the card with. (times were tough last year)

I think a cancellation fee or anything like that is incredibly stupid. And unfortunately, Anytime Fitness does do the same thing.

They did say that once you’re a member for 18-months+ you have the ability to cancel basically whenever with a 30-day notice and cancellation fee.

But, I’m just going to be honest. It’s stupid, archaic, and never something I’ll support.

Luckily, there are a lot of ways to avoid this cancellation fee that you can find online. I won’t advocate for anything in this post, but if you don’t want to pay the fee, there are ways you can avoid it.

As I said, I don’t support it. But unfortunately, as far as I know, no other gym has better policies. This is just something bad about the gym industry.

No pools/really cool stuff.

Honestly, Anytime Fitness is a gym that is good for being ‘chill’. It has weights and it’s pretty simple at that.

As I said, some locations have a hydromassage, but I’ve only found one location that does have that.

Furthermore, all my buddies (@carsten) are always talking about how Lifetime Fitness has hot tubs and swimming pools and all this crazy stuff.

In comparison, Anytime Fitness seems pretty lackluster. Even SNAP Fitness had saunas, tanning booths, and other crazy things going on.

Oh well. I wouldn’t really care if Anytime Fitness didn’t charge so much for their membership. At around $45-50/month, their competitors charging the same seem to offer way cooler features.

I don’t know though, I’m not one to really even care about hot tubs and stuff. But I know some people really like them, so it depends on what your interests are.

Conclusion of The Anytime Fitness Review

Overall, it’s a very solid gym. It doesn’t have anything that makes it stick out from the rest, but it’s reliable and safe ya know?

It’s like taking your Toyota Camry to work. Yea, it’s not the mustang you have- but you know it works, it’ll save you money, and it gets the job done well.

Overall, I really recommend Anytime Fitness. Just check out the locations in your area and see what works out for you!

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