Totally Not Bar Related
When I'm not at the bar herding cattle through the door or lecturing drunk college kids on proper behavior while out in public downtown I do several other things.
One thing I happen to love doing is lifting weights and staying in shape at the gym. I've worked out in countless gyms of many types: College gyms, mainstream "fitness" gyms, hardcore gyms, MMA gyms, etc. My personal favorites are the gyms with mostly freeweights - I admit, I don't mind some machines on occasion - and a bunch of big, sweaty, meatheads walking around getting chalk everywhere. But then again, that's just me.
I typically get in there 4 days a week. And just like anything else in the bar, I find the behavior of many in the gym to be sorely lacking. With the number of gyms in Athens, especially with The Omni opening up several years ago, I've noticed a prevelence of big dudes walking around downtown at night. Here's to them and anyone else who's thinking about "pumping some iron".
And thus, a quick guide to proper gym etiquette, specifically things that personally bother me. This is my opinion only and I'm only writing about this right now because I'm sick of writing about bar shit at the moment.
Attire. Why come in the gym in work clothes when you've been doing construction all day? Why, I ask? You dirty up the benches, you track in mud, and generally come off as too lazy to take 5 minutes to change into proper clothes. On the other hand, I hate, hate, hate, when people wear those tight shirts, like Underarmour. I used to say it was okay for the bigger guys, because skinny guys look exceptionally stupid wearing skin tight shirts, but even now, the shirts overall just bother the hell out of me for some reason. In addition, the sleeveless shirts where the hole for the arms is cut out extraordinarily large - as in all the way down to the bottom of the shirt - have also been popping up around here. Also normally worn by the skinny kids.
Unsolicited Advice. Normally this comes from the undersized kid who walks around spending most of his "gym time" talking to the people he knows and spouting off information from the latest Muscle & Fitness magazine. Or, they'll come up to you and say How'd you get so huge? As one of my coworkers recently said to someone who asked him the same question when asking him about creatine, he responded with, the only supplement I use is whey protein and....let me see, what was that other one? Oh yea - hard work. So leave me alone, please. I came here to lift, not to make friends.
Posing in the Mirror. Now, I understand the bodybuilder has to work on their poses and whatnot, but the fact is, I can count on one hand the number of guys I know who actually compete in bodybuilding competitions. Flexing your abs in the mirror or checking out the peak in your bicep makes me laugh at you uncontrollably.
Curl in the Squat Rack. I can't stand to walk in on my leg day to find some 140lb guy, probably the same one I'll be throwing out of the bar later that night, doing endless sets of curls in the squat rack. I want to shove the barbell up his ass and point him to any other number of benches that he could use when there's only one squat rack that I can use.
Cleaning Up. Put your weights away. There's nothing more infuriating than having to do an impromtu search and rescue for some random dumbbell or having to unload 500 lbs off the bench press. Some people might argue that you should wipe your sweat off the bench when you're done, but for me, I wipe the benches down before and after I use 'em, just to be safe. It's the whole common courtesy theme that I've discussed before here in detail.
Beach Muscles. Ok. Fine. I've learned that there are jackasses out there who hit up the flat bench press 3x a week, and follow that up with 45 minutes of curls and 45 minutes of abs. I accept that, despite my years and years of bitching. So, if you choose to hit up those particular muscle groups every time you set foot in the gym, then all I ask is for you to get the hell out of my way when I'd like to use a particular "beach muscle" set of equipment.
Steroids. No, I don't use steroids. Never have. I don't know much about them nor do I care to. And I'm not interested. If you use them, then that's fine but really...I don't want to talk about it, especially not in public.
Slamming Weights. It's of my personal opinion that if you can set down weights carefully and without sound, then it's just not heavy enough. Granted, I don't dramatically grunt loudly and fling them away from me when I'm done, but sometimes people who actually go in there to lift heavy shit have to just drop 'em. That's because we're tired and it's heavy, so dont lecture me about that shit.
That's only the tip of the iceberg - I could go on and on about this shit - but that covers some of the more major topics. Perhaps I'll add onto this a little later as things come to me.