Socializing at the gym

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 03, 2007 1:46 PM GMT
    When I go to workout (and now that I’m back to doing it twice a day) I have my headphones on from the locker room to the gym/cardio floor, to the truck. I don’t talk to people, relying on the universal sign language of “are you don’t with that bench/machine?” and the like.
    Yet I see people all the time who view the gym as a social club. There is nothing wrong with socializing at the gym, as long as you are not taking up valuable equipment when engaged in a lengthy conversation. Even worse are cell phone users. (Would it kill you to leave it in the car for and hour!?)
    What are your views on this, fellas? Do you talk to people at the gym? Do you discuss the latest gossip over dumbbells and protein shakes?
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    Jul 03, 2007 2:00 PM GMT
    I don't talk much to the people at my gym. Mainly because I go early in the morning and I just want to do my routine and get home for breakfast and a shower.

    It is very annoying when people are chatting and hogging the machines. And using mobile phones is also unnecessary. I always leave mine at home.

    My gym is not a glitzy chain, more spit and sawdust and I don't think any of the members see it as a place to socialise or hook up. That's probably more likely at these expensive places where they hand out free towels!
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    Jul 03, 2007 3:08 PM GMT
    Agreed, mobile phones are absolutely wrong in the workout areas. Most people who make calls go out into the lobby or outside the building itself, and I think that's appropriate gym etiquette. I don't mind conversations at the gym--it's nice to catch up with friends and acquaintances while I'm there--but we have those chats between sets and away from the machines so that we're not in anyone's way. It's really about being considerate of other people and their time...
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    Jul 03, 2007 3:18 PM GMT
    I'm pretty much the same with the headset I'm either listening to music or catching up on some news reports as the fm is linked at my gym to some tv's. That said though I HATE cell phone users at the gym their worst then when their driving down the road and not paying attention. As for talking well ya I talk when I job or between sets with people so long as its not hindering their workout and or mine and not stoping or slowing anyone else down I think its a good thing. After all the more people you know at the gym the more modivation it is to go.. see so and so or catch up with whoever

    One thing I like about the Y here that I go to is it has a lounge area to wait for people and inside a small place to relax and most people if their gonna talk are out of the way and or there.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 03, 2007 3:53 PM GMT
    Oh, I've heard of a few beefs with people at the gym and I agree with most of them...

    Cologne - why? why? why? You might as well have passed gas on the treadmill next to me. When I'm gasping for air after a few miles' run, I need it to be clean.

    Kahki pants to the gym - why? why? why? I really want to know what you wear to work. And not that what you wear affects me at all, but generally these people are more likely to have bad gym etiquette. Ask questions if you must.

    Leaving sweat on machines - What's more fun than sliding around on a slick workout bench? possible staff infections!

    Messing around and intentionally misusing machines - come on, once I use that machine I'm done with my workout; please don't break it. What if I had designed my workout to beef up my quads? How can I do that when the best machine in the gym for quads is going to be out of commission for 3-4 weeks?

    And socializing is irritating if the two are so busy in their conversation that you can't ask to work in with them.

    This is why I have a home gym.
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    Jul 03, 2007 5:52 PM GMT
    I'm curious as to why people are so averse to cell phone use in public places. As long as they're not hogging a machine or talking excessively loud, why is it a big deal? How is it different from the friends having a conversation at the gym, besides the fact that you can't hear the person on the other side?

    That being said, I'm not much of a gym socializer. I actually schedule my gym time to be the time when there are as few people there as possible. I like to work out in an empty gym. I don't really mind of others are socializing, however, as long as they're either using equipment while talking, or not taking up equipment while talking.
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    Jul 03, 2007 5:59 PM GMT
    Funny that this topic should come up. I was at the gym a couple of hours ago and this guy recognized my town since it was written on my old baseball team's tshirt I was wearing.

    So, naturally, having lived in the same part of NY state he struck up a bit of a conversation with me. Nice enough guy. I chatted for maybe 2 minutes; he was on the stationary bike, I was passing by (or trying to, haha).

    Once I saw the opportunity I chimed in, "have a good workout," and was on my way. Short, sweet, polite/friendly. I cannot understand those guys who view the gym as if it were a bar or some other context.

    On the other hand, I do chat a little with my trainer while I am working out. I guess the most important factor is whether or not your socializing is affecting your (or others') workout.
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    Jul 03, 2007 6:18 PM GMT
    I don't go to the gym to chat and respond badly when encouraged to do so. Most of the time, headphones and lip singing sends the message but every now and then, some older queen will wanna talk about something. Most of the people using cell phones at the gym should, ehhm, focus on their workouts. As far as the most annoying gym behavior, I'd have to say men/women who do 3 reps (of not heavy weight), rest for 5 minutes, then get an attitude if you ask em if you can work in/have the machine/equipment. (This happened this morning in fact: the guy was just sitting there so I gave him a good 10 min., then finally was like "Hey, do you mind if I borrow this for a few?" Of course he allowed it, but not without that look! Fuckers!)
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Jul 03, 2007 8:54 PM GMT
    You've hit on pet peeves of mine, as well. When I work out, I'm pretty much on a mission to get in and get out. Just the other day, I was working out across from a guy who was just sitting in his chest press maching gabbing on his cell phone. I just think it's a bit rude. If he wants to get out of the machine and move to the side of the room to carry on, I'd be okay with that. But, I don't want to know his business. But, even with headphones on I could hear him as I finished my last couple of sets. I suppose I'm a little more patient with guys who are chatting face-to-face, but I was recently working out at the straight gym I work out at (24 Hr. in Beverly Hills vs. 24 Hr. in West Hollywood), when two straight guys took over the only two angled benches and were two Chatty Cathies about some silly subjects. They were definitely not paying attention to their work outs. I finally asked nicely if I could work in, since they were oblivious to my hovering, and they finished their set. It comes down to general manners -- I think we're a much more selfish and self-centered society these days and people don't think about others.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 04, 2007 12:10 AM GMT
    When I go to the gym by myself I take my iPod along with me and play progressive house music (i mix it myself @ ) and this hi-energy music keeps me going for a long time at the gym. I can lift, do abs and cardio all in the same session. However, I constantly notice the hot guys at the gym and I find it difficult to make conversation with guys, not only due to my self-centered fear but also to the fact that I'm wearing headphones and jamming to techno! There have been times when I noticed a really hot guy and have been scared to say anything to him to strike up a conversation, but then again there have also been times when I had the courage to ask a guy if he had a workout partner, and if he'd like to get together to workout sometime. Where I work out it's not a gay gym, although I live in Fort Lauderdale which is a gay mecca. So, especially with some of these masculine jocks (that attract me), one can never be too sure who is gay and who isn't.

    Of course, my goal is to feel good about me and not to get obsessed with other guys that may be strutting their stuff at the gym. Hot guys are like my downfall--or just lust in general! I have all the willingness to stay true to my heart and be disciplined and lead a balanced life... maybe socialize with this one here or just jam out to my tunes some other time, but I have a tendency to go full force into whatever tickles my fancy at a given moment. For instance, there was this one really hot guy that I noticed at the gym and he happened to be a trainer. I started obsessing, fantasing, etc. and I decided to walk up to him and talk to him after about a month or two of my gazing at him. I asked him, "So, you're a trainer huh?" and he was like "yeah, so you looking for one?" and that's how it all began! He hooked me up and he even takes me shopping to help me get the right foods. He is "straight" but he says he's worked as a stripper before.. not at a gay club :( but in any event my purpose is, even after all this fantasizing, not to get in bed with him but to allow him to teach me how to train myself and show me how to eat right so I can have a body like him.

    Just last night I actually went to the gym by myself with my iPod and ended up jamming for awhile while I walked long and hard up a steep incline on the treadmill, and then i noticed this one hot guy who has caught my eye every time he's in there, and I couldn't take it anymore! I went up to the machine he was using and asked if I could "get in there with him!" haha but he wasn't there to socialize, and I respected that a lot although I was bitching in my head all night about how I wanted him! :) The same night this guy I know was with his friend and we socialized for like 10 or 15 min.! I was in the middle of my workout while we chatted and I started thinking, "Ughh I need to keep going! I'm getting tired and my body needs protein." But it is nice for a change to get out of my head and be with other people. My goal is to live a balanced life. I don't drink or use drugs so that seems to rule out a lot of the younger gay crowd around South Florida when it comes to socializing and "going out" and stuff. Lots of people down here just wanna party. I used to be that way, but I've changed and I don't want to go back to that mode. Sometimes I feel desperate though, when my eyes prowl in the gym and I want to meet a hottie. It can be frustrating at times, but I just keep working out and feelings pass in time.

    This is an interesting topic.. Of course, this is just my experience!
  • gymingit

    Posts: 156

    Jul 04, 2007 12:39 AM GMT
    UMMMMMMM I haven't been in the gym but six months now... but I don't see any problem in socializing as long as you don't hender someone from using a machine or a set of weights.

    Some of you guys, which this isn't a cut down, but it sounds like you need to lighten up and socialize. I for one prefer the gym over a bar or club because those are not my scene.

    It beats this computer and meeting profiles Online is great.... but hey, why not the gym and real people?

    Sometimes I think that's what's wrong in this world... we don't socialize enough. When I ask a guy to lunch or dinner when I first meet them, I get, I'm moving way too fast. Personally, I think the only way to get to know someone is to commune with them... but guys seem to be stuckup, shy or just down right insecure of themselves. Rarely extrovert or spur of the moment.


  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 04, 2007 12:39 AM GMT
    Balance is key.

    Going to a gym seeing the same people over and over for 4-5 years and not even saying hi is not normal. Nor is spending 2 hours at the gym talking to everyone.

    Balance is key.
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    Jul 04, 2007 5:24 AM GMT
    Even though im from tulsa ok a lot of guys at my gym will flirt with u..but its hard really hard to tell if a hot guy like u to chicken to find out..A guy could get his ass beat especially here.. but i really at the same time dont like to be talked to while working out...but honestly do like to be flirted with.... :)
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 04, 2007 6:20 AM GMT
    cutebicurious, if you look anything in real life like that profile pic, rest assured that the flirts do like what they see.

    As for socializing in the gym, a quick Google search on "basic gym etiquette" pretty much confirms everything said, thus far. However, I think EricLA makes a good point about our increasingly self-centered (narcissistic and hedonistic?) society, at least in North America. Heck, I'd fall over backward if someone actually said hello to me in the gym. At times, it seems like the gym is the loneliest crowded place on earth. Golden rule and all that jazz. However, I suck at taking the initiative to say hello, so I guess I'm a really a big wussy hypocrite.
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    Jul 04, 2007 6:41 AM GMT
    hey ruck_us yes i do look like my pic im into bodybuilding but at the same time guys r really different here..and yes the gym can be one of the loniest crowded places to be in...let alone leaveing u hot and bothered...if i saw u in the gym u would def catch my eye...
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 05, 2007 12:41 AM GMT
    Talking at the gym can be really detrimental to a lot of people. There are always going to be the groups of guys who act like the gym is a bar and will hog equipment because they talk more than they work out.
    Etiquette at the gym is something a few do need to brush up on, but that can be said for any other place. The best you can do is try to get your routine in while working around them. They will get the hint after a few times you politely interrupt them to get your workout accomplished.
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11648

    Jul 08, 2007 7:22 PM GMT
    I hate when guys yak and drape themselves over the equipment like no one else exists there
    I tend to be a little rude when I see this
    and barge right in
    I'm in the gym for a purpose
    and if you wanna talk fine...I'll talk for a min or two but then I have a workout to do or else I'm there for two hours
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 08, 2007 7:57 PM GMT
    To those of you who have a pet peeve about a little socializing at the gym, most of you come across as extremely frigid, mean and cold hearted.
    There is nothing wrong with a little human kindness and positive short conversation. How do we expect to make friends and maybe find a mate if we come to the gym with a negative, nasty attitude and with an ax in our hands ready to kill anyone who just wants to be a LITTLE friendly?

    The only time I bury myself in music is on cardio but that's ONLY because I need music to pass the time more quickly. Without my headset on the Cardio, I would go nuts!

    As far as hogging the machines, I hate that with a passion. People do this with or without talking to anyone. I've seen both.
    Do your sets and then clean off the machine and leave so someone else can get their sets over with.

    Cell phones: I hate cell phones in almost every place. People use cell phones as a status thing. It's not about neccesity or emergency. They use it to look popular. Leave the phone in the locker or at home. The car is a bad place to keep it do to a possible auto break-in.

    Final word on socializing. Go ahead and talk but keep the conversations to a low voice tone. Some men can be heard all over Bally's with loud talking and laughing and that's irritating.

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    Sep 11, 2007 2:49 PM GMT
    i usually only say hello to about a thousand guys at the gym. i'm a friendly kind of person and i can't see the point in ignoring guys i see 3/4 times a week for yrs on end. in fact ignoring them costs more energy.

    of course there are plenty of important hot jocks who ignore me because i'm not worthy.

    we have a lot of male models at my very ordinary gym, most of whom are too tied up admiring their perfection in the mirrors, but one of them is very friendly. we always chat. he probably caught me drooling over him so i had to strike up a conversation with him. (he was on the cover of 'mens'fitness' or something recently)

    there's another one who i've seen for about 3 yrs who has only just started saying hi.

    i agree with most of you though, once i start working out i just want to get on with it.

    things i can't stand? some ape using 15 pieces of equipment at the same time and won't share!
  • iHavok

    Posts: 1477

    Sep 11, 2007 3:02 PM GMT
    The gym I go to isn't a large gym. No showers or saunas to tempt, no free towels, just lots of weights, lots of nautical equipment and lots of cardio machines.
    That's okay for me right now. It's kinda where i'm at in my workout life, which is fine.
    My problem is the old people that get there at five am with me and MUST talk at the top of their voices. I turn my iPod up as far as it will go and yet I still get to hear about their grandchildren and respective spouses. They have to speak so loudly because they need to place fans at the base of their machines, so the air is blowing directly onto their old wrinkled skin. I guess they are too lazy to wash the sweat out of the wrinkles, so they try to dry it immediately (to avoid chaffing)... I dunno.
    It drives me insane. I've tried using a fan to help kill some of the noise, but that rarely works, and more often than not one of them comes up and tries to move the fan anyhow.
    I'm tempted to complain, especially since the gym isn't that large, and the shrill voices carry, but I don't want to seem like a whiner...
    it's insane.
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    Sep 11, 2007 3:23 PM GMT
    I can tolerate most socialization at the gym but it really gets my panties in a twist when they start that potluck dinner shit. NO THANK YOU I DON'T WANT TO SAMPLE YOUR POTATO SALAD!
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    Sep 11, 2007 3:24 PM GMT
    a few words is fine, being chatted up - no
  • art_smass

    Posts: 960

    Sep 11, 2007 3:26 PM GMT
    There are gyms that are more-social, and gyms that are less-social. The Y near my house has over seven thousand members and is considered to be a community hub. The philosophy of the Y is to build a sense of community. There are people who complain about other members talking too loud or taking too long on machines, but they are a minority. I tend to point them in the direction of Gold's down the street, where the atmosphere is defintely less-social.
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    Sep 11, 2007 3:37 PM GMT
    I'm completely anti-social when i'm at the gym. I glare and scowl and move fast from machine/station to machine/station. I am there for a reason and it's not to talk.

    PLUS i sound gay and i still have deep seated issues from gym class, so i dont want any of the meat heads to hear me talking. :-/

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    Sep 11, 2007 5:17 PM GMT
    It's more of a general etiquette problem. A little conversation never hurt anyone, and I'm guilty of striking some up between sets.

    Still, if it's getting in the way of your work out, just say so. If people get offended they really should remember where they're at...

    What really gets me is people swarming to benches when you get up to get a different set of dumbbells.