Second Place: American Family Fitness
Third Place: YMCA
It's no longer the Mecca only for bodybuilders — in Richmond, at least. Gold's Gym, famous for its original location in Venice Beach, Calif., which was frequented by Arnold Schwarzenegger in the early 1970s, shed the meathead reputation long ago. And its gyms are just about everywhere. In Richmond there are seven locations, from full-sized gyms near Willow Lawn and in the Fan to the relatively new Gold's Express format, which offers memberships for $10 a month. The Gold's in the Fan, which opened in 2003, also recently expanded, adding windows and tanning beds. The secret? Offer lots of membership options and stay flexible. "We try to have as many options as necessary to meet everyone's needs," says Ed Altman, general manager of Gold's in the Fan.