I went to the gym this morning, which I’ve begun doing on Sunday mornings because it’s not very crowded. I’ve also been walking on the treadmill lately and that’s been going well. I can handle speeds in the 3.5-4.3 range without discomfort and I also enjoy choosing programs that randomly incorporate hills (incline changes). What I do not enjoy is people who take calls on their cell phones while on the treadmill.
My gym used to have signs explicitly prohibiting this but I haven’t seen any recently. To me it’s just common sense that you don’t take calls while on the treadmill as it’s incredibly annoying to the people around you, but not to this lady.
“No, it’s fine, I’m at the gym, I’m just doing cardio.”
“Yeah, I’ve been on the treadmill for (some amount of time)”.
I tried to ignore her, but when I hear a conversation in close proximity to me, I have a hard time not latching on to it, no matter how boring it is. Thankfully she got off the treadmill after a couple minutes of chit chat and took her conversation elsewhere.
I’ve encountered this many times at my gym and it never ceases to be annoying. My usual strategy is to send subliminal messages of judgement and the occasional stare of annoyance, but some people are just oblivious to the fact there are other people sharing the same space they’re in. When you’re sharing space with so many people, you quickly realize how annoying people can be. I have to include myself in that grouping, because I realized I do some stuff at the gym that likely annoys others:
Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, here are my top ten gym annoyances (that I’m not currently doing):
10. People who hold on to the front of the treadmill while walking, or worse, running. Are you under the impression you’re waterskiing?
9. People wearing jeans as workout attire. Are you here to exercise or are you here to play mahjong tiles? (Lots of elderly people at the YMCA.) In my time at the YMCA, I’ve also witnessed patrons wearing pajamas to exercise. This makes a bit more sense to me as at least those fabrics allow for movement. Another time I saw a woman wearing a trench coat during Zumba class. In her defense, it was chilly.
8. Men in the hot tub with hairy backs. We all have our own grooming habits, and I’m sure it’s a challenge to get to that area, but it would be best for society if there was less hair visible when we’re communally soaking. That said, I’m pretty sure I have some male friends who are into hairiness on other men, so maybe I just need to get over myself and live and let live.
7. Poorly behaved children in the locker room. My YMCA has a family locker room but most often parents take their kids with them in the men’s or women’s locker rooms. I don’t know if it’s the acoustics or what, but these kids are always screaming. I wish there was a separate kids only locker room. It could be like Lord of the Flies. What could go wrong?
6. People who don’t shower before getting into the pool. I witnessed an entire family do this today. It was pretty awesome knowing I was swimming through their filth.
5. People who use the locker room as a waiting room. I’m not sure what these people are waiting for, but there always seem to be some people just sitting there. And of course these people are always sitting in front of my locker.
4. People who use a machine and continue sitting on it while they recover, oblivious to the fact that people are waiting.
3. People who walk side by side with friends on the track. This blocks all lanes and forces people behind them to say “excuse me!” in order to get past.
2. People who get naked in the locker room and then try to have a conversation with you. The past few months I’ve been changing in the locker room. I always used to change in a bathroom stall but then I decided I was being ridiculous and now enjoy the efficiency of changing at a locker. But the deal is, I don’t look at you and you don’t look at me. Talking to me while pantsless? Are you kidding me? Where am I supposed to look?
1. People talking on cell phones. Obviously this is the worst offense. It’s a good thing there’s no cell phone reception in the locker room or else I’d probably be witnessing a lot of naked phone calls, and nobody wants to see that.