Bugbears: we all have them. Whether it’s open cupboard doors, bad manners, or that switch left on when not in use, everyone has something that, in the immortal words of a certain Peter Griffin, really ‘grinds their gears’. But in the gym we find the ingredients for a whole new world of such shocking iniquity. That being said, here are my top five gym bugbears.
For me, there are few things more frustrating than seeing someone finish an exercise without returning the equipment to its rightful place. Even if I’m not about to use the equipment myself, I just find it downright disrespectful. Aside from the sheer arrogance and misplaced sense of entitlement, there’s also the fact that the staff work long hours to keep the gym in the best condition possible for us – so it’s the least we can do to leave things how we found them.
On a side note, don’t load up the barbell / weights machine, saunter off for 15 minutes and then declare your profound sense of injustice when someone has the temerity to think it’s fair game.
Invading personal space
Perhaps I’m being picky here, but when someone walks literally within inches of me while I’m mid-lift I find it rather disconcerting. Equally, it is not OK to stand directly in front of someone when they are clearly using the mirror (you might call me vain, but rudeness is rudeness nonetheless). A little bit of awareness is all it takes.
Congratulations on your new PB. I’m proud of you, I really am. But please don’t shout it across the gym and to the hills beyond. Additionally, intriguing as it sounds I really don’t need to hear about your mental night at TP last night. So would you mind just talking at the pitch of a normal human being, rather than puffing out your chest and projecting your conversation like it’s an election manifesto?
Something I’m sure that many of you will be familiar with. I’m all for taking constructive criticism on board, but not when it’s from someone desperately scrambling to appear knowledgeable. If a member of staff, or someone with a one rep squat max of 200kg offers me advice, then in all likelihood I will give them the time of day. Otherwise, thanks but no thanks.
Oh, no worries there pal, it’s not like anyone else needs to use those 10kg dumbbells – or the 12s, or the 14s, or the 16s, or that barbell…. I know you’re doing supersets, but seriously, in a busy campus gym? Could you not at least choose a quieter time?
This, ladies and gentlemen, is the cardinal sin of the gym. Supersetting is undoubtedly a great option to accelerate muscle growth and weight loss, but in a public gym you have to set limits. For instance, is it really fair to train supersets as a group of three, demanding half the dumbbells in the building to fulfill your collective requirements? Somehow I think not. Do not be one of these people.