The Five Types of People You Meet at the Gym
BY AMY HILL
Gym rats everywhere can attest to the various strong personalities they’ve encountered during their workouts. Here are five types of people you’re sure to run into in the weight room.
You’re quietly performing dumbbell bicep curls in the corner of the gym, making sure to stay out of everyone’s way, when a towering, muscular man struts over to the dumbbell rack and grabs two of the largest weights. While he lifts the weights, he makes sure everyone can hear him grunting with each rep. He unnecessarily drops the weights, forcing everyone to turn their heads to see where the loud banging noise came from. Not only is he loud and proud, but he has no concept of personal space. He places his sweat rag and cell phone on the unoccupied exercise bench next to him, unconcerned as to whether anyone else would like to work out that day. He doesn’t hesitate to answer his cell phone and talk loudly while completing his work out because it makes him look like a hot commodity.
The Bad Singer
Unlike the show-off, the benign bad singer is unaware that he is audibly singing off-key to the music he is listening to through his headphones or Air Pods. He even sings along to the standard background music played in the gym when he removes his AirPods. While you can’t wait until he hops on the treadmill and runs out of breath, you’re secretly envious of his oblivious nature and security. As annoying as his singing may be, you can’t deny that he seems like a genuinely happy person. You’re too socially awkward to even make eye contact and greet the person next to you in the locker room. You could never possess the confidence necessary to sing during your entire workout, but it must be nice.
Your schedule is packed and you’re trying to fit your workout into the hour of free time you have in the evenings. You arrive at the gym ready to sweat when Susan saunters over to you and starts talking about her latest shoulder injury. Not today, Susan, you think. You listen to her and smile, asking minimal questions in return and hoping she takes the hint. However, Susan is incapable of picking up on your social cues. You then listen to her ramble about how her brother-in-law has to go to court next month while watching your allotted workout time slip through your fingers. Now, instead of listening to what Susan is saying, you start brainstorming polite ways to end the conversation so you can head to the squat rack before someone else claims it. “Well hopefully everything works out,” you reply. Once you’re in the clear, you rush to the squat rack and immediately wear headphones for the remainder of your workout (without the singing, of course).
The Woman You Secretly Compete With
There she is again, wearing a cuter workout outfit than you with her hair up in the perfect messy gym bun. How does she do that? You think. Your hair could never do that. And how is she this tan in January? You can’t even tan in the summer. You make a note to yourself that if you ever find a boyfriend, you’re never bringing him to the gym when she is working out because he’d definitely leave you for her. Maybe she has a horrible personality, you hope. But she doesn’t. Everyone likes her and she has no obvious flaws. Now that your self-esteem is destroyed, you have to somehow power through another 20 minutes of high intensity cardio.
The “Is He Flirting With Me?” Guy
He asks you if he can “work in” while you’re using the leg extension machine. He’s very attractive, but you can’t tell whether he’s trying to start up a conversation with you or if he’s in a rush and doesn’t have time to wait for you to finish your set. You share the machine with him, but he doesn’t stick around to talk. Maybe he’s shy, you think. You over analyze every form of communication you have with him for the next few weeks, and you are enthralled when he finally asks you questions about your life. You’re enjoying the conversation with him when he casually mentions his girlfriend. Your heart sinks and you feel like a fool. I guess he’s just a friendly guy, you conclude. On second thought, however, how would his girlfriend feel about him striking up conversations with women at the gym when she isn’t there? You’re glad you’re not his girlfriend. He’s clearly a womanizer.