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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Gym, Rats!

The gym is a tough place for a woman, particularly the weight room--if you ever notice, most women stick to the cardio machines hardcore. If they can withstand the testosterone stench of the weight room, some ladies make it to the thigh ab/adductor machines, but that's about it. For the past four years, I worked out in an all-female facility at college and lived in a single-sex environment, so the wall of animal stink that hits you when you walk into the gym is particularly upsetting to my olfactory senses. At my new city-run gym, I have observed a veritable parade of weirdos and nut-jobs. Surely everyone else has seen similar cases, but it may be helpful to you the next time you're all set in a sports bra and tennies to categorize your new gym friends in some of the following ways:

1. The Too Old: Maybe it's my neighborhood, I don't know. The gym rats over age seventy, men and women, I salute you for your vigor and stamina. I hope to be as sprightly as you when I am your age. Older ladies, good on you for strength training, it fights the osteoperosis, but good god! Take it easy! Some of you older ladies are skinnier than greyhounds on the racetrack, lifting weights easily three times your body weight. I worry about your health, too, older men, but please stop talking on your cell phone earpieces while lifting weights, it is disturbing to everyone around you. Sure, men can father children at any age past puberty, but it is HIGHLY inappropriate for you to be eyeing the young women around as if they're chattel. Naughty, naughty!

2. The Too Young: Don't most gyms have rules about kids fourteen and younger being banned from cardio and weight rooms? Why are these tiny little girls who can't possibly be many years past menarche exercising like their lives depend on it? That can't be good for your growing bodies, children. Also, your little terrycloth pants and sweatshirts with things like, "PINK," or "JUICY" emblazoned on the ass, so cunningly folded down to show how perky and young you are, make me feel incredibly old at the ripe, saggy age of twenty-two. You stop that. And stop giving me the evil eye, yes I do have a few pounds to lose, unlike your stick bodies, that's why I'm here.

3. The FOSsies: Or, as I have dubbed them, the Fresh Off the Streetsies. This category mainly consists of young men working out with the heaviest weights of all, but wearing baggy jeans, sweatshirts, and regular old Vans shoes. Really? Jeans at the gym? Of course it is understandable that you are coming to the gym from work, school, what-have-you, but is it all that difficult to pop a pair of workout pants in your man-bag in the morning? Everyone else seems to handle it well enough. The bunch of you look like a teenage gang, in grave danger of getting your baggy pants caught between weight plates. BUY SOME PANTS, end of story.

4. The Exercisaholics: You. Yes, you. Stop hogging the machines, stop sweating up everything, why are you always here? The particular kind of exercisaholic that is frustrating to me are those gym rats who will yell at you if you so much as make a move toward "their" machine, take too long on a certain machine, leave their towel on the machine seat and then walk around, expecting that stinky, nasty towel to maintain their control in that small area. If you are lifting such heavy weights that you can't do your sets in one sitting, or that your body can't handle it without a long, strolling break, perhaps you SHOULDN'T BE LIFTING THAT MUCH. Also, you're using that machine the wrong way and you look ridiculous.

5. The Random Oddballs: Crazy Clown-Lips Lady. The Naricissus in Disguise as an Adonis (think a cross between Guy Pearce and Michael Vartan, only a GIANT ASSHOLE who peers at himself in the mirror and touches himself). Weird Old Lady Who Works Out in a Full Fur Coat and Jewelry (who are you?). The Boys I Go to School with Who Don't Acknowledge My Presence. Smelly Nick Nolte Lookalike Invariably Wearing Ugg Boots Without Socks, A Leopard-Print Leotard, and Daisy-Dukes.

Such characters at the gym! Who's at yours?

1 comment:

Jeanne said...

Speaking of gyms and of weight rooms, I highly recommend (for everyone!) to check out Stumptuous.com's section on weight training for women: http://www.stumptuous.com/cms/index.php

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