One of the Pokestops closest to my house was just replaced by a gym! And a new Pokestop popped up right next to it!
That’s super convenient!! Before, there weren’t any gyms in view from my house and I had to walk far to get to one. And it just happened to be friendly today so I finally got my first Ace Trainer medal! Earned some XP, too! I kept at it for a while and did some experimenting with different Pokemon placement and I was able to defeat 4 of the gym guardians!
As soon as I left (because it was getting late) it started losing the prestige I gave it and another team has it now, but the fact that I was able to get that far in training means I could probably handle an actual battle now if I’m careful about it (and I will be).