Quelle surprise! You’ve discovered all those choccies you scoffed over Christmas have made you a little soft centred in the middle. And that means only one thing: wriggling into Lycra! Yep, it’s gym time and let’s face it, getting to the gym can almost be an achievement in itself, so the last thing you want to be faced with are ill mannered, or just plain annoying fellow gym goers. Gym etiquette is not only polite it’s essential and it pays to know which ones to avoid working out besides. Here’s my personal experience of gym stereotypes…
Blame Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally. She made it socially acceptable to grunt, groan and scream in public places. But enough is enough. Why do people think we want to hear their animalistic noises when lifting weights? Do they assume if they make enough grunts to revival that of
Wimbledon champions their performance can only be viewed as explosive in the bedroom? And to make matters worse, these noise polluters never return their free weights back to their proper resting place. They arrogantly drop them on the floor, leaving them for someone to trip over and twist an ankle.
Using the place as a social club to vent the ups and downs of their personal lives, you are privy to their very loud conversations. They cover such topics as the ending of the latest blockbuster movie you haven’t yet seen and the ‘she said, I said’ scenario of a mutual friend they’ve fallen out with. It’s enough to put you off female bonding for life. And let’s not even mention those that plug themselves into their iPods and give it some vocal aerobics. Out of tune.
THE CHANGING ROOM MAFIA (CRM)
First there are the showers abusers. They’ve squeezed the last of the shampoo out of their bottle and leave it to bob on a sea full of foam in the corner of the shower. The CRM also has the arrogance to leave the shower door open and proceed to wash all their intimate bits and pieces right in front of you. Once dried, the CRM is in no hurry to cover up. She parades around the changing room naked until she has squeezed her blackheads in front of the mirror and applied a full face of make-up. The bottom line is: we don’t love seeing your bootie as much as you do.
THE PERSONAL TRAINER
Yes, you have a body of a Greek Adonis and your biceps are something to be admired. But please stop flirting and flexing at every female that comes through the door. The mirrors were put there to check posture and form, not your hair. And I beg you to stop asking me if I would like to break a sweat with you for an hour – not at £50 a session anyway!
BIKINI TOP WEARERS
If there’s a sight that makes you want to head straight for the exit sign before you’ve even warmed up, it’s the girl with the body of a playmate working out in a bikini top. Guy’s heads swivel 360 degrees just to catch that tantalising glimpse of her full and pert breasts. Okay, so you’ve got a body worthy of Jennifer Aniston, but remember, you’re not on a beach in
, you’re at the David Lloyd in Hounslow. Hawaii
What is it about latecomers to a class that makes them act like D list celebrities? First off, it’s a Pilates class, not a date. It’s not cool to be late. Secondly, why the big entrance? Bursting in gushing their excuses, they proceed to distract the whole room by waving at other members of the class and generally acting like we should be grateful they’ve arrived at all. Another five minutes is spent unrolling her mat and trying to squeeze herself in prime position at the front of the class. That tight little smile from the instructor shouldn’t be misread as “glad to see you”, but “bloody get here on time.”
THE HEAVY PERFUME WEARER
Are we in the beauty hall at Selfridges? No, well stop spritzing. Perfume induced nausea at the gym should be classed as an infringement of our olfactory rights. Not only do you spend half your workout time trying to detect the origins of the scent (making a fragrant note never to buy it), but haven’t you caught on eau de gym doesn’t take away from the aroma of your perspiration?