I know 1001 blog posts have been written on this subject, but I felt the need to add my own. First let me say that overall I love my gym. They have great babysitting (WOO!), two locations that are convenient for me, all the machines that I like to use, great classes – especially yoga, and friendly employees. BUT, some of the people who use the gym just cannot get it through their heads that it is NOT their own personal space and that just maybe, other people would like to use the equipment too. Here are a few of my top gym etiquette pet peeves:
– Don’t leave plates on the machine. Yes, you are a super he-man lifting your 3 45lb plates on the incline chest press. You rule. You leave me in awe. But for f’s sake put them back on the rack when you’re done!!! By the time I’ve lugged 6 45lb plates back to their proper place I have nothing left in me for the actual workout! (Exception here for the leg press. You can TOTALLY leave one 45lb plate on each side there. If you aren’t using that much weight on the leg press you might as well skip it.)
– Don’t lift RIGHT IN FRONT of the weight rack. I cannot stand it when someone uses the weight rack as if it were a piece of equipment. I can’t get to my dumbbells if your ass is standing in front of them doing curls. Take 4 steps back and make life easier for everyone. If the weights are too heavy for you to take 4 steps back, perhaps you should lighten it up a bit.
– This is a big one for me. PLEASE, PLEASE don’t use 87 different benches/machines/weights at the same time. I realize that you have some uber-awesome workout routine going on here. I respect that. But you have got to let other people work in. You can’t call dibs on half the gym and expect everyone else to stand around waiting patiently for you to finish. Pretending you can’t hear anyone over your music is not an excuse. As an addendum to this one – if you are taking 20 min breaks between sets get your ass up and walk around or something so someone else can use the equipment.
– And to the dudes at the gym three things:
First, please wear proper undergarments. Loose boxers ain’t cuttin it under those mesh-y athletic shorts. When I’m lying on a bench your junk is at eye-level and it is NOT a pleasant sight. Keep that sh*t in check!
Second, you may actually be having an orgasm as you get that 150lbs into the air, but can you maybe keep it down? It’s really hard for me not to laugh out loud and drop my weights on the floor.
Third, pregnant women working out are not putting on a show for your entertainment. Exercise during pregnancy is perfectly safe and is in fact very beneficial to both mother and baby. There’s a whole magazine devoted to it http://www.fitpregnancy.com/. Preggies working out already feel awkward and it does not help to have 3 guys blatantly standing around watching them with their mouths hanging open. This goes for women too, I’ve seen you staring.
I try my best to think about other people when I work out at the gym. I put things away, clean things off, share equipment, etc. It’s not that hard. Just try to be mindful of others and I won’t have to alter my routine enough to be able to kick your ass.