by Kris Pitcher
Happy New Year! As we get ourselves geared up to hit the gym this New Year I thought we should cover some simple gym etiquette issues so you fit right in. One of the big fears is that you'll stand out like a sore thumb, and we don't want that.
Your style is important and shouldn't be over looked as you make your way back into the gym this year. It would be nice if you'd splurge for some things that fit you...now. Not at your goal weight. Just a suggestion.
Next, when you are staking out your treadmill it's critical you have all your technology handy. You're going to need your phone, your e-reader, your i pad, your water bottle or workout drink, your towel, and the news paper. Having all these items indicates to all the other members that this treadmill is yours. Whether you step away for a drink of water, a trip to the bathroom, or to chat with your neighbor...it's still yours.
In the weight room you're going to want to blend in. So, first of all hit that leg press. There is after all only one, and you want to look like you know what you're doing. Load that baby up with at least eight plates on each side. Oops! It's at its highest setting and you're a shorty. That's OK, just ease it down. Oh! Thank goodness for those safety stops.
Well, that was a little heavier than you thought but you can just walk away from this mess. And just leave those plates on there, you'll be doing the next guy a favor. Maybe you'll try your hand at some of those machine weights.
You see the abdominal machine and hone in on it. A few sets there and your six pack will be back, right? But you're only three sets in and some joker wants to "work in". What the heck? "Sure," you tell him, "I only have 3 more sets." Why is he looking at you like such a confused jerk, doesn't he know how this works?
After all that you're pretty spent, so you head back to your treadmill to get your stuff but it's gone and some lady is walking on it. When you ask her where your stuff is she says she turned it into the lost and found. This is where you start yelling and screaming about how that is your treadmill. You're fitting right in!
Now it's time to go to the front counter and talk to the manager on duty. But they start talking to you about policy and monopolizing equipment. Don't worry though, those rules aren't for you. And another manager will be there tomorrow...you can talk to them about it.
See when you're at the gym it's easy to blend in, to go with the flow of what everyone else is doing, and to follow simple gym etiquette. It's OK to spit in the drinking fountain, or in the hallway by the bathroom. It's cool to leave your weights all around, or just put them where ever. It's no problem to monopolize equipment, or to leave equipment all over the weight room. It's fine to hide all the handles to the cable machine so that only you know where they are. It's cool to leave your sweat on machines and benches for the next person to deal with, and to not wash your hands after you use the toilet.
The rules are for everyone but you. You don't have to clean your machine after you use it. Those towels and spray bottles aren't for you. And there are people to put all the weights in order after you use them.
The gym is about to get real busy people...it just takes a little bit of common sense to play together. There aren't "people", there's just you. Help us help you fit in. *smile