An Open Letter To “That” Guy At The Gym
Dear That Guy At The Gym,
I’m onto you.
I have been at this gym since May, and it usually does not take longer me than a week or two to figure out who the regulars are.
The regulars are a couple of dozen guys (always, guys), usually in their 20s and 30s. They know each other. They grunt. They text. Some of them even lift.
And then, there is you.
You are older. You have enough arm and shoulder definition to “pass” for a gym rat. A strategically chosen tank top highlights the biceps, while draping over the tell-tale high cortisol belly.
You seem helpful. You share your knowledge of equipment and training, even through it is clear that you are not a trainer. Only yesterday I overheard you sharing your “expertise” on how women should train – light weights and cardio. Obviously.
However, I’m onto you.
You are at the gym when I arrive, and you are still there when I leave.
I have never seen you actually work out. In fact, every time I see you, you are chatting up yet another woman. She sits on a piece of equipment, and you tower over her in that ever familiar power stance.
You have tried striking a conversation with me couple of times, when I just started coming to this gym. These attempts at communication did not last long. Why?
Because you realized that 1) I was there to train, not chat, and, more importantly, 2) I knew what I was doing. Playing friendly predator did not quite work.
Your “clientele” fits into a very specific category – women in their 30s and 40s, who seem newer to the gym. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the machines and free weights, and this is where you conveniently swoop in to demonstrate a deadlift.
The best part for you comes next, as you get to closely examine “the posterior chain” of the woman, attempting the same movement. You lay your hands on the small of her back to show exactly how flat her back should be. You check our her behind, as she does leg curls on a machine facing away from you.
Every time I witness this pseudo-training session, I get a vague sticky feeling. Like the feeling I got, when a shy socially awkward guy I went to university with told me that he goes to nightclubs just to grind up against women.
I’m onto you. And it’s creepy.
And not in that cute Radiohead-kinda way.
Please don’t be That Guy.
No hugs for you,
YOUR TURN: Do you have That Guy at your gym? What would you do? Or, perhaps… Are you That Guy?