Gyms attract a wealth of different people and over time you will come into contact with some very interesting characters. Some of them will leave a good impression upon you but others might do just the opposite and have you starting in disbelief as they perform their 100th dumbbell curl of the day with a 2kg weight in an attempt to get ‘toned rather than big’. If you’ve frequented a number of gyms over the years then you will start to notice the same characters popping up again and again from the grunter to the incredible sweating man. Where do these people come from and are they as annoying in real life, outside of the gym or do, once they step through the doors of the gym and put in their spandex shorts, turn into the fools and idiots we recognise them as. Here are some of the trainers we love to hate from our years in the gym:
The Grunter. More often than not The Grunter will be a man although from time to time a female version does crop up to the horror of the patrons of the gym. As the name suggests The Grunter makes disturbing noises of the grunting variety when performing any exercise no matter how strenuous or not. Don’t get me wrong, a little noise when working out is fine. We all understand that pushing yourself that extra bit harder for that last rep can cause you to momentarily lose control of your bodily functions and let out an audible sigh or bellow but The Grunter takes it to the next level of self expression. The Grunter in my current gym makes ridiculous noises to accompany every movement he does whether it be picking up weights to put on the barbell or simply getting up off the bench. It is cringe inducing to hear and on occasions has forced me to leave the gym as his outbursts are so obnoxious. In very small cases, some Grunters can be forgiven for not knowing what they do but for the majority of this ilk they are guilty of a heinous crime and should be sentenced accordingly with a minimal punishment of a life time ban from all gyms.
The Expert. In all walks of life you will encounter The Expert but in no arena is he more comfortable and at home than in the gym. No matter what exercise you are performing whether it be the bench press or a lesser spotted movement like dumbbell pullovers, if The Expert is around you are likely to be interrupted which a call of “Don’t do it like that mate”. Shortly after your concentration and focus was punctured you will receive an uninvited stream of advice and comment that starts out related to the exercise you were in the middle of but soon moves onto topics close to your new friend’s heart such as the how his friends is loads bigger than you, his appraisal of the female patrons of the gym and ending up on any number of random topics nothing to do with the gym whatsoever. Now please note we are not saying we are opposed to getting advice from people who know their stuff and can deliver it in a concise way. After all, this is the best way to learn but that kind of advice is rarely given by The Expert and the reasons for their motivation to tell you how it should be done is more for their own benefit in order to stroke their ego and draw attention to themselves. Overall The Expert is relatively harmless and once he has burnt up a few minutes of your time he will be on to his next victim. It goes without saying that you should ignore and wisdom they impart and stick to what you know works.
The Incredible Sweating Man. Although one shouldn’t blame a guy for sweating too much as he was most likely just dealt a poor hand by mother nature it isn’t that easy to keep a cool head when using some equipment after he has finished with it. Some people with overactive sweat glands are aware of the effect this has and considerably carry a towel with them to mop up afterwards but this is not always the case and when someone neglects their duty to tidy up after themselves they are known as The Incredible Sweating Man and become a bane to any gym and its customers. There isn’t much you can do about this character apart from stay out of their jet stream and avoid using any machines or equipment after them. There is nothing worse than getting ready to do some dumbbell bench presses only to spot a round pool of sweat and hair just where you were about to place the back of your head.
I don’t Train Legs; I Play Football. When you started out in the gym you probably didn’t train your legs. Hell, I didn’t even train my back as it was all about the chest and biceps. I quickly wised up and started working the front and back muscle groups of my body before eventually adding leg movements such as squats, stiff legged deadlifts and calf raises into my training routine. But some people never catch on. We can all understand that training legs is more of an obligation than a treat but it has to be done in order to maintain a balanced physique, improve core strength and most importantly get that natural testosterone boost that only big compound moves like the squat can deliver. People come up for all kinds of excuses for not training legs such as ‘I want to be able to wear skinny jeans’, or ‘I don’t need to as I play football’. Running around might make your legs tired but it can’t be compared with lifting 100kg of dead weight on your back using the power of your legs and the muscle gains from these two different activities cannot be compared. So next time someone gives you an outlandish excuse for why they don’t train their legs just nod and refer them to The Expert.
Doing Curls in the Squat Rack. Now, if you are like the previous guy and don’t put much effort into training the lower half of your body then you might be wondering what that big rack in the corner is with an Olympic barbell hooked up in it. Well my chicken-legged friend that is the squat rack. As the name suggests it is for performing squats in and nothing else. Sometimes it might be combined with a power rack for doing bench presses and pull ups in but if it is just a squat rack then it is for nothing more than squats and maybe a few other leg exercises. But as lots of people neglect to train their legs they often have no idea what it is and use it for all kinds of activities much to the chagrin of the serious trainers in the gym. Having to wait for someone who is using the gym equipment
The Weekend Warrior. Sometimes known as the Weekend Millionaire this creature lives life to the full and wants everyone in their immediate and not so immediate vicinity to know it. If you aren’t having it as large as The Weekend Warrior then you are living life in the bus lane and he wants you to know exactly how great life is from up on his perch. This guy isn’t unique to the gym environment at all but due to the close confines of the fitness centre uses his time in the gym to tell his bros at high volumes exactly what he was up to at the weekend and who he did what with and where. Due to the loud nature of his call which is done entirely with purpose everyone else in the gym gets to hear how cool he is and how amazing his life is. The Weekend Warrior is pretty harmless and can easily be avoided by using earphones and keeping clear of the gym on a Monday when his weekend’s exploits are still fresh in his mind. It is very unlikely you will approached by this guy as it is likely you don’t even register on his radar.
Know someone who fits one of these descriptions? Met someone even more annoying? Leave a comment below and let us know what grinds your gears in the gym.