Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Blinky Bellybutton Rings and other things NOT to wear/do at the gym

A while back, my wife, Michelle, and I were doing our morning workout when a young women walk pass with a blinking LED bellybutton ring. It may not have been so bad, but I was doing dumbbell military presses and she walk right in front of my face. Blinky, blinky, blinky. I am known to be easily distracted by shiny things, flashing lights and so on. It is usually not a big deal or dangerous, but it isn't very safe when I have two large dumbbells over my head (I think they were 75s, but I could be wrong). Some of you might think 150lbs coming down on my thick skull might not cause much damage; you may be right, but still it would cause a bad headache. THE POINT: Don't wear blinking LED body jewelry to the gym!!! You cause a mentally hyperactive person to get hurt.

So, LEDs are out. What else is a bad idea, or inappropriate at the gym? For starters, don't run around the workout area in your underwear. Ladies, this mainly applies to you. Short spandex shorts and a sports bra are underwear not workout clothing. Yes some guys are guilty of wearing really skimpy tank tops and bike shorts. this is wrong, and as my old First Sergeant used to say, they should be "PUNCHED IN THE HEAD!" Conversely, GUYS wear some kind of underwear. Spandex works. No one wants to see it while you're bench pressing! Also don't wear street clothes, like jeans or any button-up shirt. They can restrict movement, and you'll look like a dork.

OK, we have some basic ground rules for dress (wear clothes), but what actions should be avoided? Well, don't complain about "Mr. Sweaty" dripping all over the cardio machines. If you are not sweating while doing cardio, you need to work harder. The machines are not there for a gab session. On the other hand, if you are "Mr/Mrs/Miss Sweaty"  clean up after yourself. No one wants to use a machine that looks like Swamp Thing or the Creature from the Black Lagoon just used it. So, work hard, sweat like a nasty pig, and then clean up after yourself.

Another DON'T is carrying around your cellphone. OK, so I have a certain amount of disdain for cellphones, but do you really want your spotter to say "One sec, I got to take this call!" while you're halfway up on your last rep of a heavy lift. Think hard. this is when you need that wonderful security blanket confidence provided by your spotter. If he/she is there, you know that even if you choke or have troubles racking the bar, you won't be smashed. So, what if you are not spotting? Well, I am still easily distracted, and I'm sure there are others who are too.

Now, the list could go on and on, but I think we all get the general part. Be polite at the gym and wear some clothes! Thank you.


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