Muscle Pains: The Seven People We Hate in the Weight Room

Matt SheehanAnalyst IFebruary 22, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 11:  Mart Seim of Estonia makes a lift in the Men's 105kg during the Weightlifting LOCOG Test Event for London 2012 at ExCel on December 11, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Julian Finney/Getty Images

Hello gym rats, and welcome to the last list you want to find yourselves on. Everyday, millions of Americans head to the gym to get their fitness on, and every time we go, we see people that make us want to throw the weight bench out the window.

These people make you shake your head and wonder how they ever made the decision of taking up irritating people as a hobby. We all have our own pet peeves, but in the House of Sweat we can all agree that these seven people are appreciated by nobody.


Hat Wearers

I’m going to kick off this list of hate with a personal pet peeve of mine: people that have no idea how to dress. If there are two clothing styles that grind my gears, it's people who wear sunglasses indoors and people who wear hats in the weight room.

Guess what people, the sun doesn’t shine through a drywall ceiling. I know, groundbreaking.

If you think you have so much swag that you can’t afford to take off your snap-back Marlins hat, you are instantly going to be labeled a joke by half the building. These people are usually the same people flexing in front of the mirror for 75 percent of their time in the gym, proving their swag-overlord is much too douchey powerful for anyone to touch.

Bottom line, if you want to wear a hat and not look like a jackass, step out of the weight room swagasaurus rex.


Treadmill Walkers

Now I’m not one for the treadmill unless I feel like passing out in five minutes flat, but I can only imagine this being worse than shin splints to all you runners out there. I’m positive about this because I’ve heard my runner friends bellyache about people who walk on the running machine.

Usually this is just a little upsetting, but since it’s close to spring break. it makes this offense more of a felony. Come on people, your fellow gym mates are trying to get their stomachs flatter than your laptop screen and their legs built like a statue.

If you need to walk, walk around your apartment, house or God forbid, you walk outside. You don’t need a black conveyor belt to walk on when you can do it literally anywhere else.


The Machinist

This is the guy who takes at least a five-minute break before starting his next reps. Yeah dude, there is no one else is in the gym but you, and definitely no one else is looking to use that machine either.

This guy also makes you want to throw the medicine ball through the wall if: They are not breathing heavily in the slightest bit, but instead just aimlessly staring into space; they are looking at their iPod as if they have been playing solitaire for the past six minutes; it is the only machine you are looking to use; they get up after their mini-coffee break and walk away like they just got out of a barber shop chair.

Don’t get me wrong, catching your breath during reps is fine. Heck, I do that all the time, but if you sit there long enough to the point where your shorts start binding to the machine, it’s probably time to give it up.


The Camper

This guy burns my soul. The camper is the guy who decides that the most convenient spot to do his free weight workout is no further than 12 inches away from the weight rack. In my head I can only think, “Yeah chief, the other 40 people in here definitely are not looking to use those 15 pairs of weights you are blocking off, keep on grinding.”

Could you slide in front of him to snag your weights? Possibly, but you run the risk of getting socked with a 10-pound weight as he frantically flails his arms while doing bicep curls. When this cat strolls on over to the weight rack, go get your water bottle, because no one works out until he says so.


The Guy Who Thinks He Owns Every %&$# Machine

We all know this guy. Usually clad in a cut off and oversized shorts, this gym rat thinks he owns the damn place and has his name on every machine.

This actually happened to me the other day, and the sequence of events went like so:

I’m waiting to make my triceps harder than concrete on that triceps pull-down mechanism, so I wait for this guy to finish up his duty. Fair enough, and he even rolls on over to another machine to look like the tan Incredible Hulk.

As I’m hammering out 20 reps on 180 pounds—and by that I mean 10 reps on 80—I notice he is doing considerable damage on yet another machine. Good deal, until he walks over and utters the words, “Uh, I was kind of using that, can you hurry up?”

Yep, go ahead your highness, I forgot you rented out this side of the weight room for your liking. Let me guess, you’re going to go to the café right after this and claim the tray you used six hours ago during lunch, right? And after that you’re going to kick the kid off of the bus seat you were sitting on two days ago, correct? Looks like someone never watched the Barney episode on sharing.


The Public Address Announcer

Lo and behold, the greatest athlete to walk the face of the earth is gracing us with his appearance today!

This self-titled Greek God is a weight room staple, and he makes sure you cannot miss him. This is the guy who talks to his buddy about his wondrous athletic achievements in high school and the weight room, which is nothing out of the ordinary.

What is out of the ordinary is the kid’s decision to talk about these accolades at a volume level never reached before in normal man-to-man conversation. He makes sure you hear his story, he wants you to ask for an autograph before you leave and his goal is to get you to throw yourself to your knees and bow before him.

Oh, and if you start to listen to this guy’s story, because it’s impossible to avoid, I have a spoiler alert for you: The story ends with him saying the reason he doesn’t play anymore is because of a catastrophic ACL injury his senior year. If it wasn’t for that, he would already be in the Hall of Fame.


The Schwarzenegger

Ah yes, this guy. This man needs little to no explanation, but just for kicks and giggles, let’s run through the résumé. The Schwarzenegger is the man who grunts loudly immediately after his first rep on the bench, walks around with his arms at least eight inches away from his torso, as if he is allergic to his own body, files under the category of at least three of the people already mentioned and makes sure that you notice him going H.A.M. on the machine your puny being just got left.

Well there ya have it folks, the seven people we can’t stand in the pumpetorium. If you fit under any of these categories, don’t be mad. Instead, you can probably find pleasure in the fact that you can bench at least double what I can. Good luck in your weightlifting and treadmill-running ventures everyone, and keep on grinding.