The 11 worst kinds of people you always see at the gym
The fitness industry has grown exponentially over the last ten to fifteen years
With that, so has the number of clowns acting irresponsibly in the gym. With the huge increase in memberships, the weights room is no longer a haven for aspiring Mr. Olympias and no one else.
You'll now find ample amounts of Geordie Shore wannabes, dumbbell hoggers and those who think a max deadlift only counts if you break the sound decibel record by screaming in the process.
These are 11 of the worst kinds of people you will find at the gym.
1. The Unsolicited Advice Guy
You know, the guys who like to show off how much they know by approaching people uninvited, giving them unsolicited workout ‘advice’.
More often than not, this advice will be aimed at women. They’ll ask if they want your help.
If you’re concerned that someone is using the equipment incorrectly or is about to hurt themselves, tell a member of staff. Trainers are literally employed to give this sort of advice.
Otherwise, just concentrate on your own workout.
2. The Creep
The gym equivalent of The Social Media Reply Guy.
Some guys physically cannot stop themselves from staring at women working out, intimidating them or as mentioned above, giving them unsolicited training tips.
Some women have taken to wearing big headphones in the weights area as a way of dissuading guys from hitting on them.
Take that as a cue.
If I’m wearing headphones at the gym there is 158% chance I don’t want to talk to you dude
— Olivia Caridi (@OliviaCaridi) November 7, 2017
3. The Phone Addict
You can do virtually everything on your smartphone nowadays.
You can buy a house through it, watch TV on it and even convince gullible Instagram users you're a hugely successful stock market trader who just happens to split their time between LA and Bognor Regis.
It is therefore easy to see why so many struggle to put their phone down. But when you're at the gym, try and lock it away.
If you’re recording your set or timing very specific rest periods, having your phone out is fine. But otherwise, you’re only wasting your time and everyone else’s.
Save the selfies until you've finished training, so the person waiting can use the equipment.
4. The Sweater
We all sweat - well, apart from Prince Andrew at Pizza Hut (or whatever the hell that 100% real condition is).
You’ll want to be pushing yourself in the gym, for sure. But if you’ve left a machine absolutely covered in perspiration, show some basic hygiene standards and wipe the equipment down after you’ve finished with it.
In these dark and dangerous COVID times, a base level of hygiene is even more important. Failure to comply should result in a ban, let’s be honest.
5. The Screamer
Also known as Chris Grunter (one for the Welsh football fans).
There’s nothing wrong with lifting heavy, shooting for a new PB or generally training with intensity.
But that doesn’t mean you need to make as much noise as possible. You're a guy deadlifting in the gym - not Thrust, the car which broke the land speed record in 1997.
Some people assume you have to make some level of noise when you're lifting particularly heavy, but that's not always necessary.
Just look at this clip of The Mountain hitting a 501kg deadlift:
Hafthor Björnsson - a.k.a The Mountain from Game of Thrones - today set a new deadlift world record by lifting 501kg. 👏 pic.twitter.com/L1Mz6fXm2d
— JOE (@JOE_co_uk) May 2, 2020
You don't hear a peep out of him. The sound you do hear is made by his friends, family and 501 kilograms of iron hitting the deck.
6. The Poser
There are two main instances when flexing is ok:
- You’re a competitive bodybuilder practising a stage routine
- You are flexing a muscle against resistance (what most exercises should look like)
Otherwise, forget using the gym mirrors for your amateur photoshoot. They are for checking technique, and space is limited in most gyms post-lockdown.
If you really want to flex like crazy, wait till you’re next in front of your bathroom mirror.
7. The Cardio King
To each his own and all that jazz, but the idea of paying for a gym membership only to run on the treadmill is a bit wasteful.
You can jog, walk or run outside or at the park, and you get some added Vitamin D there as well.
I’d understand more if you grew up in South Wales like I did - where it absolutely pisses down for 96% of the year.
Unless you’re a runner, you don’t even need the treadmill. Kettlebells, rowing machines, assault bikes and even supersets with free weights all offer a cardio benefit to your training.
If you are a runner then you obviously need to, um...practice running.
8. The Random Stacker
Not much to say here, other than there is a special place in hell reserved for those who leave weights stacked randomly on machines like this:
Everyone knows the heaviest plates go on first, and you add smaller ones incrementally.
9. The Lurker
Asking someone how many sets they have left is fine. It's also fine to ask if you can alternate with them, and use the machine while they are resting between sets.
What's not okay is doing neither, but instead awkwardly lurking in and around the area.
Either ask someone if you can jump in, or go and use another piece of kit while you're waiting.
10. The Shamer
Thankfully, these are becoming increasingly rare. You occasionally see people who try and make fun of those who are perhaps overweight, or don’t know how to use the equipment properly.
Don’t be that dickhead.
You might not want to give unsolicited advice, and that person might not want to receive it. Alert one of the trainers on duty, if you think someone’s going to injure themselves, or looks confused.
Don’t be that guy who films it for the sake of some cheap likes on Facebook.
11. The Talkers
In some gyms, you’d swear it was Loose Women on steroids.
Some guys see the weights room as an extension of the pub but with dumbbells. Wetherspoons with stringer vests, basically.
The talkers see a workout as another chance to dick around, not do much training and chat to their mates.
This is particularly annoying at peak time. There are three other people waiting to use the bench, lads. Leave the banterthon till later.
(DISCLAIMER: This is a bit of light-hearted fun aimed at encouraging people to use the gym responsibly, while treating others with respect.
No specific individuals are being targeted. Unless you do leave 10 pairs of dumbbells lying around. Then it's personal.)