Dooley's

At the gym – you come here often?

In Uncategorized on January 18, 2011 at 12:20 pm

Gosh, where do I even begin? The gym is like a breeding ground for socially awkward behavior. Whether it’s skimpy clothes, revealing exercises, bad pick-up lines or just hyper-narcissism, it can be pretty uncomfortable slogging through a 60 minute workout – if you’re able to even keep it to that. Yeah, wearing headphones should be the universal signal that you don’t want to talk, but people – especially those who get validation from people noticing them at the gym – won’t leave you alone. Or how about the situation where you get stuck on a machine next to chatty Kathy, creepy Craig, or smelly Steve? Yikes.

I feel for all of the ladies out there. Gawking is probably ten times worse at the gym than the bar – without any alcohol, go figure. It’s gotten bad enough that my gym – Urban Active Awkward – displays a message on its jumbo-tron every so often that instructs us not to stare at others for unusually long periods of time – yep, applies to you girls too. Shoot, it’s partly their fault – there are so many mirrors in that place that you you’re always looking at somebody and sometimes, accidentally, at odd angles.

Conversations at the gym always crack me up, too. I had my time being a meathead – in high school – but, come on, the guys at the gym just love talking about the best bicep curl or the latest supplement. I wonder if they know or do anything else. And the guys that grunt after each rep so everyone knows how badass they are. Dude, I can tell by your cutoff shirt and your gallon of water that you’re big and strong. Ok, last one – the guy who stares and flexes in the mirror as if no one see it. C’mon man.

What habits do you have that might turn people off? I know that I don’t always wipe the machine off, at times I wear cutoffs when – relatively speaking – I have no right to, I take my time at each machine and, if I’m in a hurry, I use multiple machines at once. That’s pretty obnoxious, I’m sure. First step is admitting I have a problem, right?

One final thought to leave you with, then I want you all to carry this conversation – I laugh every time people rush to get the closest parking spot to the gym as possible. That’s about as counter-intuitive as my gym not having stairs to get in and out. Nonsense.

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  1. A couple of things I find annoying at the gym, also acknowledging the fact that I too am probably guilty of some annoying behaviors as well (i.e. not wiping off machines, etc.):

    1. When people interrupt my workout to ask for a spot multiple times. Maybe it’s because I don’t like people in general, but if you need a spotter then either a. bring a friend, b. use nautilus machines (or the equivalent), or c. MAN UP!
    2. When people hawk over you when they want to use that machine next. Buddy – I realize you want to use the machine, you don’t have to stare at me awkwardly from 3 feet away through 3 sets.
    3. When the these socially awkward meatheads hog machines or weights for abnormal amounts of time because they are busy yapping to other idiots about their diet, protein shakes, and spray tans. Half the people I see at the gym probably only reap about half the benefits of their workouts because they don’t do it effectively.
    4. When people don’t have the common courtesy the put weights away. I don’t particularly want to waste any additional time pulling weights off, or searching for the other dumbbell to the set I’m using.

    Great post Dools. I clearly appreciate the ability to vent on the issue.

  2. I agree. I hate it most when people say that high protein energy drinks are the first thing you should consume after a grueling crunch-fest. It has been scientifically proven that high carb high calorie supplements are the best way to recoup after a good ab blasting, then and ONLY then are your traditional protein avenues appropriate.

    But seriously Dooley this is why I avoid the gym. Overhearing just one of these conversations would completely destroy my new year’s resolution.

    • Agreed to everything said. I also just want to reiterate how hilarious it is that the gym actually has to post information saying it is inappropriate to “gaze” at people while they work out. Do no other social skills transfer into the gym, or are these people just this awkward everywhere?

  3. Hands down the worst thing for me at the gym is the guy/girl who doesn’t believe in deodorant. You know the person who walks past you and all of the oxygen in the area is replaced by BO. The kind of smell that just zaps your strength and causes you to gag. There are at least 3 habitual offenders at the Hyde Park location.

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