All Dan Hill wanted to do was head over to 24 Hour Fitness and get a nice swim in after a long day of work. As it turned out, that was easier said than done. Because when Dan hopped out of the pool, he realized something was very wrong, and his quick trip to the gym turned into something else entirely.
24 Hour Fitness Was His Refuge
For many people, staying in shape is a hassle. Who wants to take time out of their day to go to the gym? Answer: Dan Hill. His local 24 Hour Fitness was a place he frequented on a daily basis.
But this man didn't go straight to the weights, bench press, or even a treadmill. Instead, he headed to another aspect of the gym that people sometimes forget exists -- the pool.
Swimming Was Relaxing
To keep up with his cardio, Dan preferred to swim laps in the pool instead of running miles upon miles on the treadmill. Besides, it was better on his joints, and he didn't have to listen to the Billboard Top 100 playing through the gym speakers.
Swimming was a win-win! While swimming was a relaxing form of exercise for Dan, there was a downside to this particular pool that he had to work around.
During The Day, The Pool Was Very Crowded
While Dan enjoyed going to the 24 Hour Fitness pool, there was a downside to his preferred method of working out. The pool tended to get overly crowded during the day. And Dan didn't necessarily enjoy waiting around for one of the lanes to open.
As one can imagine, waiting around to workout wasn't the ideal situation. So, Dan decided a change was in order. And that change came in the form of switching up his routine.
Dan Switched His Gym Schedule To Nighttime
Instead of heading to the gym during the day, Dan decided to try his hand at a night workout since the gym was open 24 hours. It was settled. He'd pack a bag with his swimming gear, bring it to work, and head over to 24 Hour Fitness after he'd finished up at the office.
It was the perfect plan! Well, at least he thought it was the perfect plan.
Everything Changed On January 11
When Dan arrived at his local 24 Hour Fitness in Sandy, Utah, he didn't expect things to go so wrong. He was just there to get in a few laps, after all. No harm, no foul! That's where he was very wrong.
On January 11, Dan did what he typically did when he got to the gym. He changed into his swimming attire, grabbed his goggles, and headed over to the pool. But things were about to take a drastic turn.
The Pool Was Totally Empty
The gym at night was everything Dan could have asked for. Not only was the main area pretty empty, but he had the entire pool to himself. No more waiting around for a lane to open up! He was able to hop right in the water and get moving.
Soon, Dan was about to realize his nighttime gym session was too good to be true. And his quick trip to swim was about to be a whole lot longer.
He Swam Until Midnight
Dan was over the moon with his new routine. He was the only one in the pool, it was marvelous. He had all of the space and privacy he could ever ask for. So, for the next few hours, he swam his laps and enjoyed the moment.
Eventually, he came to a stop. Looking up at the clock on the wall, Dan noticed that it was just about to be midnight. He should be heading home.
The Gym Was Open For 24 Hours, Right?
Getting out of the water, Dan headed towards the men's locker room. Typically, after he swam, he'd take a shower and change before heading back home. So, that's exactly what he did.
By the time he was dried off and changed, it was almost 12:30 am. But the gym was open for 24 hours, or so the name of the building suggested, so he didn't think too much of the time. He should have.
The Gym Doors Were Locked!
Leaving the locker room and heading to the front door, Dan was ready to go home. But when he went to open the door, it wouldn't budge. Both of the doors were locked! Dan was trapped inside the 24 Hour Fitness.
What was he going to do? Well, the first thing he decided to do was look for help. There had to be a staff member hanging around somewhere. At least, that's what he hoped.
There Were No Staff Members Around
After looking around the gym for quite some time, Dan realized that he was totally alone. There were no staff members in sight, let alone another gym member. Staying as calm as possible, Dan came to the realization that the gym was definitely closed and he was 100% locked inside the building with no way out.
Still, it was too early to panic. There had to be another way out of the gym.
It Was Funny In A Home Alone-Type Way
Dan wasn't panicking, though. In fact, he found the situation kind of comical. During an interview with KTVX, he explained his initial reaction to the "lock-in" situation he found himself in. He said, "I just thought it was kinda funny at the start. You know, it was kinda like Home Alone."
"Like, oh my gosh. I have this gym to myself." But, as the minutes ticked by, that sense of freedom only lasted so long.
Dan Wanted To Go Home
The minutes ticked by, and Dan still had no idea how he was going to get out of the gym. Needless to say, the novelty of being locked inside the building alone had worn off.
After a day at work and a long workout, he was tired and wanted to go home and sleep. And to say making a bed on a treadmill was less than ideal would be an understatement. Maybe he missed someone else lurking around?
Maybe He Wasn't Alone?
Hoping that maybe he just missed someone hiding out in the locker room or somewhere else in the gym, Dan decided to search again. Maybe someone else got locked in, too. But after walking around, all Dan could hear were his own footsteps. He was alone.
Finally, Dan did the only thing he could think of -- he decided it was time to call his wife and let her know what was going on.
Plan A: Get Comfortable
Dan called his wife to let her know his tiny predicament. With nothing to do, his wife told him that he might as well buckle down for the night and get comfortable because it didn't seem as though anyone was going to be back to open the gym doors anytime soon.
While she made sense, it wasn't the news Dan wanted to hear at that point in time. Still, he began thinking of a suitable bed for the night.
Dan Accepted That His Night Would Be Spent In The Gym
It was going to be a long night, and Dan was going to want to get comfortable. His first thought was to grab some of the gym towels and make a make-shift bed for the evening. But that's when a lightbulb went off in his head.
He just remembered something very important, something that might be his ticket out of the locked gym! There was a fire exit in the back of the building.
Plan B: Fire Exit Was His Ticket Out
Dan left the towels that he was about to use for a bed and headed toward the back of the gym where the first exit door was located. This was it; he was going to get out of the gym and go home!
As it turned out, the empty pool wasn't the only thing that was too good to be true for Dan that evening. So was the fire exit.
The Fire Exit Had An Alarm
Dan quickly realized that he wasn't going to be able to leave the gym by way of the fire exit. The door had an alarm, and it would go off if he opened the door. The last thing he wanted was for the cops to come and arrest him on suspicion of him breaking into the gym.
That would be a whole level of irony Dan was not ready to deal with that evening. He was trying to break out, not in!
Plan C: Dan Decided To Call The Police
But the alarm did give Dan an idea. He decided to call the police. If anyone could get him out of this mess, it'd be them. During an interview with KTVX, Dan discussed the phone call, saying, "I called dispatch, and the guy pauses for like 10 seconds and says 'You're where?'"
" And I said, 'I’m in 24 Hour Fitness, and there’s an alarm system here, and I don’t want to get busted for breaking and entering.'"
Time Ticked By And No One Showed
The 911 dispatcher told Dan that they'd send someone over. What they failed to mention is that "sending someone over" could take hours! As time ticked by, Dan was certain the person he was on the phone with that he was making the entire thing up.
Soon, it was past two in the morning and Dan was certain there was no way he was getting out of the gym until it reopened. So much for 24 hours!
Reinforcements Finally Arrived
Finally, Dan saw the distinct blue and red lights of a police car. He was finally going to get out of the gym and go home to sleep! After everything, Dan had a pretty good attitude.
On his Facebook post, Dan joked about the misadventure, saying, "Free at last! Free at last! Thanks to three nice cops, I am free at last." Now, he's sure to put an "I'm Here" sign anytime he's swimming to make sure he's never locked inside the gym again!