The ten worst kinds of people at the gym
It's a necessity - but there are some incredibly annoying people to be found at the gym.
The unpaid, unqualified personal trainers
“You’re doing that wrong!”
This is how a particularly unwanted species attempts to introduce themselves to your life.
“It’s funny”, you say to yourself. “I don’t remember hiring a personal trainer for this gym session, never mind one not in any sort of identification or any other desirable qualifications other than being a busybody.”
These people are almost exclusively out of shape, yet feel that after a week at the gym they can pontificate to others on how best to use machinery.
The hungover zombies
Now in fairness, most of us have been here.
You wake up after one-too-many the night before.
You’ve managed to convince yourself you’re feeling “fresh”.
You’ve updated all your social media accounts to reflect this and rub your friends faces in it. You have to prove it now. You can’t be called out as liar on Facebook, sure you'd never be able to show your face again.
You’re believing your own lie so much you’ve decided to go to the gym.
Mistake. It was possible you were still drunk while making this decision, you now realise.
Everything goes in slow motion. You decide to take a leisurely cycle on a bike. 20 seconds in and your holding back vomit.
You’ve never suffered motion sickness on a stationary bike, but there’s a first time for everything.
You've learned one thing however, you tell yourself as you eat your breakfast roll - those people who say exercise cures a hangover are filthy liars.
Look, no one wants a pulled muscle.
But a gentle stretch of the legs and a little cardio is all that’s required.
This self-designed rain dance of a routine you're performing in front of 100 people is, quite frankly, mortifying.
You can’t do the splits, stop trying.
No running backwards on a treadmill isn’t an avant-garde muscle warming technique, it’s a genuine danger to others.
While you might think it is being viewed as a majestic, elegant interpretive dance – we, your fellow gym users, assure you it is most certainly not.
Let’s be clear lads, you’re not The Rock. You’re not lifting a small car over your head. It’s a dumbbell weighing the equivalent of a tin of beans.
Yet there they are, grunting away, needing to vocalise and announce the Herculean strength they clearly possess to the entire gym.
The grunters will also finish their auditory show by loudly dropping their weights suddenly to the ground, walking away slightly disappointed that for some reason the entire gym didn’t burst into a spontaneous round of applause.
These guys can be found at both the cardiac and weight equipment. And the worst thing is, they don’t think anyone else notices.
On treadmills they set the incline to a near 90 degrees, if they were to fall it would be a near vertical drop.
But then what do they do? They grab on with their hands, greatly reducing the resistance on their legs.
But they prod on, smugly looking around as they go, forgetting their hands aren't under a cloak of invisibility.
On weight machines they're just as bad. They set the weight ridiculously high for their scrawny arms, but don’t actually complete the full motion of lifting the weight.
The types of exercise are different, but the smugness level remains the same.
Let’s be clear chatters, the gym is not a place to socialise.
Here's the scene: You’re about to hit your own personal wall after three and a half minutes on the cross trainer. This is your Everest. But Mary on the machine next to you has different ideas. She wants a chat.
“It’s warm/cold out today”, she says.
You try to give her a cold stare, but the sweat is stinging your eyes.
She follows up: “It’s busy today, isn’t it?”
This wagon isn’t giving up on dragging some conversation out of you, that's becoming apparent.
“Mmm”, you mumble, cursing yourself for forgetting your headphones and being open to this situation.
“Do you come here often?”, she quizzes.
This isn’t a singles night, Mary.
You have no option but to retreat, she’s not giving up. Thanks for that, Mary the chatter.
The Pensive reflective
It’s 6pm. The gym is at peak busy time.
So why wouldn’t you take this time to deeply contemplate life while hogging a machine there’s a queue of ten people waiting for.
How do you sleep at night?
Again, most of us have fallen into this trap.
You pace yourself against the person next to you, in an imaginary battle you’ve created in your mind.
You keep trying to sneak a nonchalant look at the screen on their treadmill.
“How fast are they going? How long have they been on it? What’s their incline?”
Some take this a whole step further by deliberately working out next to a weaker member of the herd.
They feel like a cheetah sprinting next to the tubby, balding man next to them.
It’s like they're Roger Federer scoring a touchdown with an Olympic gold medal while drop kicking terrorists. That’s the level of glory these people exude.
“I go to the gym all the time, but I just can’t lose weight!”
We all have that friend.
There’s a basic problem here – The Jacuzzi, while in the gym, does not count as ‘going to the gym’.
Likewise, the chocolate you pick up from the vending machine outside afterwards doesn’t have magical weight-loss properties just because it’s in the gym.
Technically not a gym user, but nonetheless an annoying aspect of the gym-ing experience. You’ve been there. There’s a row of empty machines, yet the cleaner decides to hoover under yours.
Yes, you’re gasping for air towards the end of your interval sessions. So this would obviously be the perfect time to spray toxic cleaning chemical fumes.
Changing? Trying that awkward dance of getting dressed under a towel? Perfect time to clean out the locker next to you, it would seem.