Gym Rats – the worst of the worst

Jonny Rothwell
Posted January 29, 2013 in Other, Uncategorized

The New Year’s resolution has a lot to answer for. Every year an annual stampede, lasting about four weeks, leads to throngs of new fitness-nuts clogging-up gyms like SATS and Friskis throughout the capital. Feelings of guilt brought on by excessive consumption during the preceding week’s festivities fuels their new found motivation. This trend culminates in a significant amount of new members, many of whom are hell-bent on unleashing unique ways of shedding weight on the unsuspecting public.

These annoying people can be found draped over equipment, lingering by water fountains, dangling from chin-up bars and naked more often than is strictly necessary. Below is a list of the worst offenders, a collection of scenarios you are likely to encounter and the spectacles you wish you hadn’t. You have been warned.

The Nude Old Guy
Have you ever described something that droops or sags as sexy? Yet the most out of shape people are also the ones who insist on prancing around naked. Gifted with blinding confidence the dressing room is a minefield of excessive nudity. From pensioners drying their balls with the hair-dryer to leg spreading in the sauna – I’ve had the pleasure of seeing it all.

Top tip: Do yourself a favor and shower at home or, if you must use the dressing room, keep your eyes glued to the floor at all times.

The Innovator

The Innovator

After an extended period stretching and warming-up the Innovator will proceed to use equipment in unorthodox ways. These clueless individuals mock basic human biomechanics and safety in their pursuit of superhuman strength and the glory of future chiropractor bills. Remember, no one is safe. If they see you lifting 50 kilograms, they’ll immediately hoist 80; if you’re jogging at 10km per hour, they’ll push it to 11.

Top tip: Have patience. When their luck runs out the chances are you’ll see them flailing beneath something heavy surrounded by dumbfounded onlookers. Sweet justice.

The Personal Non-Trainer

At first the Personal Non-Trainer seems friendly enough: an offer of a spot or a kind word about those cool trainers you are wearing. Don’t be fooled. If you encourage communication or worse – pause and chat – you’ll be stuck with the fitness coach from hell.

Lacking any outward indication of physical fitness the Personal Non-Trainer will inform you that your knee is bending beyond your toes, your hips are dipping below 90 degrees and basically, you’re doing everything wrong. Not that you asked, of course.

Top tip: The Personal Non-Trainer will leave victims confused instead of, you know, actually working out. Listen to music on your headphones and avoid eye-contact if you want to stay sane.


Gadget Geek

The Gadget Geek

iPad? Check. Oversized headphones? Check. Sweat bands? Check. Heart-rate monitor? Check. Virginity? Check.





The Grunter

The Grunter asserts his dominance over the gym by prowling in front of the mirrors, repeatedly looking over his shoulder to admire his traps and, above all, grunting loudly during sets.


Top tip: As if the bulging veins and gritted teeth didn’t give it away – he means business. Stay out of their stomping ground unless you want to get bench pressed.




The Eurodoll

Dripping with designer attitude and arrogance is the pouty, silicon enhanced Eurodoll. Consistently sporting a baseball cap and caked in make-up, these self-entitled women are usually found hoofing about on the treadmill. Invariably you’ll hear them before seeing them as they’ll have an iPhone stuck to their ear.

Top tip: Avoid all contact or you risk mental retardation.



The MMA Guy


Sporting a Mohawk, tribal tattoo and Tapout t-shirt the MMA Guy spends his workout explaining how to elbow-strike the shit out of a heavy bag to anyone who’ll listen. Can often be found doing a spot of shadow boxing on the treadmill.

Top tip: His vacant, murderous stare conceals a secret his tweezed eyebrows and waxed chest cannot. He’s gay. MMA Guy is still very much in the closet so don’t reveal this if you value your life.


illustrations // Sheena Malone


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