Sure, there are some valid excuses to skip the gym. They look like something like these: I’m injured, I’ve hit the gym every day this week and I need a day to rest, I’m dying of the flu, my BFF is in town for 24 hours and I’m going to spend every millisecond with her and a few bottles of champagne (Okay, we’ll call this one borderline), etc. But there are also those totally invalid, my-dog-ate-my-homework excuses that we all know are BS, but use anyway. They look something like these:
It is the absolute worst when you get to the gym, only to realize you forgot something crucial, am I right? Besides the obvious—shoes, socks, sports bra, etc.—there are three things I consider absolute gym necessities: dry shampoo, face cleanser and hair bands.
We’ve all been there: You’re basking in the post-workout glow, still dripping with sweat, as you ride the bus or train home from the gym. Then you smell something rancid and think to yourself, “I don’t understand people who don’t wear deodorant,” only to realize that, YIKES, THAT SMELL IS COMING FROM YOU.
On the one hand, this smell is a badge of honor: You’ve sweated your brains out, torched some serious calories, and totally earned it. But on the other hand, well … that stench is nasty, girl.
A friend who’s gone to a few RowZone classes in the past forwarded me a string of emails that went out to the studio’s Rittenhouse and Newtown Square members this week explaining a new towel policy—that effective immediately, towels, which were once handed out for free, would now cost a dollar.
If the idea of working out in a gym sends you into a full-blown panic attack, you’re not alone. I mean, it’s a building crammed with very sweaty, muscle-y strangers and machines that resemble Medieval torture devices. Pretttty intimidating stuff.
But, let’s face it: In the dead of winter, the options for staying fit tend to dwindle. (Jogging along Kelly Drive kind of loses its appeal once temperatures dip down into the single digits.) So if gymtimidation has put a kink in your workout routine, this list is for you.
We talked with some of Philly’s best trainers and got their advice on how to conquer gymtimidation once and for all. So study up, follow their know-how and kick gymtimidation’s ass. And then celebrate with a spiked peppermint smoothie, because it is almost the weekend, after all.
Guys, can you feel it? It’s about to happen: Your gym will soon be overrun by the post-New Year’s crowd. While I’m thrilled that more people are trying to get on the fitness wagon (go you!), the influx of bodies can be cause for, well, more than a little annoyance. Like, suddenly there’s a long line for treadmills. And don’t get me started on how long it takes to find a free locker.
So while I have the attention of the class, I’d like to take this opportunity to review a few Unwritten Rules of the Gym. These are rules of conduct and implicit understanding that you won’t find plastered on a plaque in the locker room or next to the cardio machines. These are gripes about unseemly habits and behaviors that everybody wants to say to everybody else, but nobody actually has the guts to.
Well, Philly, I have the guts. And I asked a bunch of local trainers and gym owners for their input, too, so consider what follows to be straight from the horse’s mouth. Capisce?
Josh Dixon, who’s been on the fast track toward representing the U.S. at the summer Olympics this year in London, addressed his personal life recently after finishing second out of more than 70 gymnasts at the U.S. Men’s Qualifier in Colorado Springs this weekend.
The Stanford undergrad told Outsports: “This would never affect how I’m judged or my position on the U.S. Olympic team.” And while he says that he once felt pressure to stay in the closet when he was younger, the reactions he’s received over the years have been mostly positive – especially from fellow gymnasts at college.
Dixon, who comes from a diverse background – he’s both black and Japanese, and was adopted as a child by parents who are white and Japanese – says he was inspired by his adoptive sisters to pursue gymnastics.
He’s also among very few male Olympians who have come out prior to participating in the games. Most people might think of Greg Louganis or even Tom Waddell (who died from AIDS complications many years ago), but even they had not been open publicly while participating in the games. For Louganis, it was only after people learned that he was HIV-positive (after hitting his head during a competition) that he ever addressed his sexuality, eventually becoming an advocate for LGBT rights after retiring from diving.
Johnny Weir, however, has been remarkably open about his sexual orientation – camping it up on the ice at times to the chagrin of plenty of critics. And David Pinchler and Patrick Jeffrey – both divers – have also come out as gay. But there has never been an out male or female gymnast to compete in the Olympics. If Dixon qualifies, he could become the first.