Don’t Be That Person At The Gym

Time for a rant! Do you like ranting? I don’t usually, but today’s rant is going to be a good one because it doubles up as an educational session that can correct you of some of your wrongdoing. While I do not profess to be a Messiah, the content of today’s blog posts are valuable, as they were sourced by many regular people, and can teach you a thing or two!

Everyone is doing a post like this, so I am, for once, joining the bandwagon and getting into it too! ps. “everyone” not in the literal sense, but referring to “many people”, okay? So yes, today’s rant is about some stereotypes of people who are found in the gym; more specifically it is about what they do to piss everybody off. My hope for this post is that if you find yourself in the position of the antagoniser, you will change your habits and not be “that guy, or gal”.

The Attention-seeker

This stereotype comes in both the male and female varieties. The thing that stands out about them is their attire. The male equivalent will be dressed like they are going to the club – a nice branded body-hugging T-shirt or shirt, with some really nice jeans, fashionable sneakers, and maybe even sunnies. The female equivalent will be dolled up. These typically tend to be conventionally attractive, but they look so out of place. So before you go to the gym, find out what is appropriate gym wear. Hint: It should be something you’re comfortable perspiring in!

The Poorly-Dressed Person

Continuing on from the last sentence of the previous stereotype comes the people who are on the opposite end of the spectrum – those whose dress sense is either out-of-fashion or simply sloppy. For the former variety, their dress sense will be from the stereotypical 1980’s tight gym wear or the type you’d see on those aerobics videos of that era. The latter variety would be those whose clothes have holes all over the place. Just as bad are those wearing normal or tight T-shirts with inappropriate words on them. They’ll make you wanna chuckle to yourself.

The Person On The Phone

This stereotype also crosses the gender boundary. These are people who seem to be on the phone all the time. In my gym one of them happens to be a North Indian man speaking in Hindi or Punjabi over a headset while performing low-intensity exercise. In another gym I used to go to, it’s a lady with a very high pitched voice. I guess this takes multi-tasking to a new level, although in all truth, it will annoy other gym-users. Omigosh gurl, I know, right?

The Sweat Trail Person

Alright, we all go to the gym to get or stay in shape, right? That means that if we are not sweating at all, no matter if it’s cardio or weights, we are probably not exercising with sufficient intensity. You are meant to sweat. However, you are also meant to be considerate and wipe your sweat off the machines after you use them. Imagine if you are about to sit on a weight bench only to see a puddle of sweat there. Gross, isn’t it?

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The Equipment Hog

In almost every gym, there are always people doing circuit sets. And due to it’s nature, it necessitates the use of several equipment at the same time. In an empty gym, no one will complain. But if it’s peak hour, the rules of courtesy and consideration dictate that one shouldn’t hog all the equipment. This is also usually the person who also take up a lot of floor space with equipment all around. They’re better off with a home gym.

The Unwanted Coach

In an ego-ridden place like the gym, it is normal for there to be some know-it-alls. These are the people, usually men, who go around disturbing people by correcting their form and talking about the exercise as though he is the most qualified to. This unsolicited advice is not only unwelcome, it also puts everyone in an awkward situation. If someone really wanted to learn, s/he would hire a personal trainer, or ask for someone else’s opinion.

The Social Butterfly

Unlike the unwanted coach, this stereotype is harder to dismiss, but can be just as annoying. These would be the people who seem to know everyone in the gym, and spends a lot of time incessantly chatting with everyone, while neglecting their own workout. Such people don’t understand that most people’s purpose of using the gym is to workout and get out. Surely there are other places to meet new friends. Like the bar? Or the library?

Poor Form Guy

There are three possibilities for people who perform strength training exercises with really poor form. They are either a newbie who doesn’t know what they are doing, a veteran who was never taught how to perform the exercise properly, or someone who is trying to look tough by using more weight than what they can handle. Either way, you should aspire to not be this person. Not only is poor form blindingly obvious, it also has the potential to result in injuries. Like seriously!

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Person Who Puts No Effort In

This stereotype comes in many forms. It could be that person walking  slowly on the treadmill with no incline, the person who uses the really light dumbbells for the workout, or the person on the elliptical at setting ‘one’. Now, don’t get me wrong, some people do it tactically and strategically, such as for muscle recovery or just to get the blood flowing. But someone who does such an effortless workout and doesn’t break a sweat every single time will not see much progress.

The Grunter/Shouter

If you have been going to the gym for a while, you would know exactly what I’m talking about. Although it is normal to expel a quiet grunt when struggling with a weight (which is the whole point of going to the gym), these people would grunt excessively or even scream out their reps, totally oblivious to the other users nearby who are getting increasingly homicidal. Another reason they might do this is to attract attention to themselves. Oooh look here youleh, look at how much weight I can lift!

The Weight Slammer

This person is usually part of the category above as well. These are the people who throw their weights down after a set. Not only is this an Occ Health and Safety violation, it scares the bejebus out of everyone. It is normal to lose control of weights occasionally, but if it happens after every rep, then maybe they should be using slightly lighter weights.

The Narcissist

This is the person who always poses in front of the mirror. It is not a very common stereotype these days, thank goodness! But once in a while you will see them. They will gaze at the mirror for no real reason. Newsflash: the mirrors in the gym are for us to examine our own form when exercising so that we can correct them. Some people just don’t get it.

The Creepy Guy

I have left the best one for last. I can bet that in almost every gym that is open to the public, there would be at least one creepy guy. (I used ‘guy’ specifically because we are socialised to think that women behaving the same way aren’t creeps. Yay patriarchy). Anyways this guy would always stare at people and make them feel awkward. Their object of desire is usually female, although men are also fair game. Occasionally two such stereotypes would cross paths, which is when things can get interesting. But please, for goodness’ sake, don’t be this one!

Alright, how are you feeling now? Educated? Amused? The latter is more likely if you are already a gym rat like me. Anyways, there are dozens of other stereotypes that exist at the gym; I have only listed out the few that I can think of off the top of my head. Remember – don’t be that weird person at the gym, aight?

Mark

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