Generally speaking, those who live outside of the city have fewer social venues. In my own experience, I have found that the result of this is that gyms become gathering spaces for a large volume of eccentric characters who don't seem to just be in it for the fitness. I'm tempted to believe that they gather just because it's something to do.
This lack of definitive purpose means that people are doing some weird shit not exactly conducive to their workout.
As an avid people watcher and gym enthusiast myself, these are some of the people I most look forward to being annoyed with when I go to the gym:
1. The Nightclub Stray
A guy or girl with impeccably groomed hair given the task at hand. They are having the time of their life walking around talking to people, and not-so-much working out. My assumption is that these folk are here on a Saturday night because they are too broke or too hungover from going out last night in the city.
2. The Hoarder
A classic gym asshole. This person won’t make eye contact until they’ve done 45 sets in a row without letting go of the machine or letting you work in. They stay put and text in between sets instead of acknowledging you and the fact that you’ve been waiting for a while. Hey, I know you see me, look into my eyes so I can ask you who fucking raised you.
3. The Gym Alien
This is the person who has no idea how to use equipment but completely commits to however they choose to use it. Although admit it, you’re often inspired by their creativity.
4. The Cirque de Soleil
You're engrossed in your iPod seeking a good beat for crunches, and when you look up again, the person in front of you is in a fucking handstand. Now she's doing pushups in a handstand... now she's doing one handed pushups in a handstand... is someone filming this???
5. The Elders
Just to be clear - elders don't annoy me. But they are a distinct addition to any gym. Often they are alone and working harder than anyone else. And they are absolutely wearing it on their face. They’ll either motivate you to work harder, or make you feel guilty for not doing so. They’ll give you great life advice in the sauna later.
6. The 15 Year Old Girls
They bought a membership and seem to believe it's an all-inclusive ticket to their dream body. They come in their high school gym shirt with 5 of their friends and walk at 2.0 on the treadmill beside their besties, whilst taking snapchats.
7. The Grunter
Please. I beg of you. I know you’re addicted to attention because you also walk around with your arms almost perpendicular to your body in an attempt to convince people that there is too much muscle to let them fall by your sides. That's fine. But the grunting often turns to yelling and it has got to stop. A grunt is an uncontrolled sound effect on par with a burp or a fart. Therefore, be embarrassed. The more you grunt in pain, the more likely the people around you are going to picture you take a painful number two.
8. The Training Hounds
Do not accept advice from anyone whose shirt matches the building. Sure, they might be fit, friendly, and qualified; but they will treat the tidbit of advice they're giving you as a sample for further services that they're going to insist you pay for.
9. The Body Builders
God bless your discipline and your physique and your seemingly abundant joy to live in the gym, but try to understand that the gym isn’t the centre of everyone’s life. Therefore, you're not holistically superior to everyone just because in this building you are.
10. The Stink Bomb
This individual has forgotten the D.O. for the B.O. and now his treadmill neighbours are paying for it as they try to jog whilst only breathing out of their mouths. Don't bother wiping your yoga mat once you're finished, just burn it.
11. The Creeps
Guys who only come to the gym to see girls in spandex. They'll somehow confuse your scowl and headphones as an invitation to start a conversation. Sometimes, they'll just watch you without saying a word, which can actually be worse. These guys can be found beside that inner-thigh crunch machine desperately trying to make eye contact.
12. The Competitive Treadmill Neighbour
This person will usually be of the same gender as you if you feel the tension. If they notice you are both running at 6.5, they'll tick theirs up to 6.6 just for a petty edge. They are more interested in your speed and calories-burned than you are, and probably want to race.
13. The Insta-flexer
You’ve seen her. You can’t miss her. She’s got fake eyelashes and a killer bod, but you haven’t actually seen her work out yet. She’s too busy holding up the pilates class so she can take full length mirror pics in the all-purpose room.
14. The Unsolicited Advice Guy
Please do not automatically assume that girls cannot be experienced gym-goers. It is obnoxious to assume that you’re entitled to advise anyone you don't know, because they may be more qualified than you. It is especially unwelcome because Unsolicited Advice Guy thinks he's awesome and helpful and probably pats himself on the back afterward.
15. The Flexi-Bella
This girl is never in an isolated corner, where doing the splits would maybe be acceptable. Because girls who do the splits at the gym usually aren't doing it for their own benefit.
16. The 'Still Counts' Guy
People who slowly trod on the elliptical for 5 minutes, walk around to see if anything else looks appealing, and then leave. I'm not sure if this really still counts, guy.
17. The Cross-Fit Pro
Both exhausting and inspiring to watch. You are tempted to ask what she's training for, but you're worried she'll say "life" and then you'll have to feel bad about training for your own life with a brisk walk and two crunches.
18. The Locker Room Nude
Every gym has one, if not more. And it's never the person you'd think would be proudest of their naked figure. You'd like to give them a towel, but you should give em kudos for their confidence instead.
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