FOR THE BOYS
It’s your first day in the gym. Your new shorts with matching vest and blindingly white trainers stick out a mile. You have just entered a whole new world, one with its own set of unspoken rules. So, how do you know what to do?
Here are some examples to help you fit in to your new environment.
The Changing Room
Never choose the locker right next to the ‘gym giant.’ These guys have been training for years. Post shower, they will endeavour to take up as much area as possible to dry themselves. This may even include a spontaneous ‘lat-spread’ to deter you from getting your flabby body anywhere near him. You will also appreciate this piece of advice when you see the size of his towel!
The hairdryers are meant for drying the hair on your head, NOT any other part of your body. Blow-drying your chest hair into a ‘quaff’ or putting your foot on the sink whilst you ‘give the boys an airing on low,’ is not acceptable behaviour.
Once you have built your body to Schwarzenegger proportions, try to avoid becoming the guy in rule 1.
Used plasters should be ‘binned’ immediately. In other words, NOT to be added to the used-plaster collage on the changing room wall.
The Gym Floor – Consideration For Others
Leaving a sweat-patch on equipment is not hygienic. Neither is picking up the nearest sweatshirt (not yours) and using it to wipe down the bench! BRING A TOWEL.
Wear deodorant – A quick sniff of your pits before leaving the changing rooms should ascertain whether you need a quick spray. However, if you need a shower after a day’s work, take one. This will not have any significant effect on the environment and will go a long way to keeping any gym buddies you have.
Don’t sing whilst listening to your Ipod. How hard are you working if you are still able to sing ‘Eye of the Tiger’ at the top of your voice?
Don’t leave your weights on the bar for others to dismantle – Although watching a 9 stone guy trying to heave 100kg off the squat- rack bar is hilarious, it’s just not on, fellas!
Respect personal space – This means NOT looming over someone bench pressing to ask
“ How much longer do you think you’ll be?”
This is intimidating for a beginner who will probably jump off and declare “finished” half way through his sets. Or you could just have picked the wrong guy and end up pinned to the bench with a loaded bar against your neck.
Proper use of equipment – Using the adjustable bench for keeping your new training top off the floor, is not classed as ‘ proper use of equipment.’ Neither is using the squat rack to lean against whilst you check out the girl in the hot pants attempting a bent-over barbell row!
Pool and Spa Area
Shaving in the jacuzzi is not to be encouraged. The management do not care if the steam is great for opening the pores! The same applies to getting out your ’scrubby mitt’ to slough-off dead skin.
Unless otherwise stated, swimwear should be worn in the steam room. Not adhering to this rule can often lead to embarrassment and could get you banned from the club.
If your body makes you look like an extra from ‘Planet of the Apes,’ have some consideration for the guy who has to clean the jacuzzi. A back, crack and sack waxing is not at all painful. Ok, it may sting a bit!
Sticking to these suggestions, will improve your gym experience. It also means that you will always have someone who won’t mind spotting you when attempting you personal best on the bench press.