I will be moving to Ballston in July and will be working in Fairfax. I'd like to find a decent swimming pool to train there twice a week.
In Ballston your absolute best bet is the pool at Wash-Lee HS at the corner of Quincy and Washington Blvd. They have hours both before and after work (and midday, but it sounds like that's when you're in Fairfax)
For Fairfax County Pools:
Your choice of 25 meter and 50 meter pools. All very well kept.
FYI: Washington - Lee HS gets pretty crowded in the evenings because they have classes and close a bunch of lanes. And, they close in thunder/lightning, despite being an indoor pool...I found this out the hard way at 0545 this morning :(
I've got a similar situation. Live in Courthouse, work in Fair Lakes. The only Fairfax County pool I've been to is Providence (near 50 & beltway) and it is really nice. I've heard good things about Oak Marr as well (just off 66 on Jermantown Rd). Even if you can somehow get the Fairfax County resident discount, they still seem a little pricey, although you would not need any sort of gym membership. I've tried Washington & Lee as well, and it can get pretty crowded in the mornings, but still easy to get a good workout it. I'll just choose to shower elsewhere.
It may seem counterintuitive, but I've found for the best workout, price (as long as you go 3+ times per week), and efficient use of time, for me it is best to go the other direction and swim with a masters program at AU (I know, that's almost in MD! Go figure, traffic patterns are weird)
Just a bunch more options,
The new W&L pool opens for regular use on July 14th. I believe it will be 10 lanes short course yards, so the extra lanes might alleviate the crowding that's common there. I know it's a popular pool due to its convenient location.
And, yeah, I hate the fact that Arlington closes their pools during thunderstorms, but apparently it's a pool management theory that you can't count on the grounding system to not fail if the building were struck by lightning. (or something like that)
Thanks for all your responses!
I really like the Chinquapin rec center in Alexandria. The pool usually isn't too crowded and it's very well kept up.