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5 Gym Sins and How to Spot Them

>> Nov 11, 2016

With New Year's just around the corner, gyms are going to be more crowded than ever. Whether you’re experienced in the area or you’re just starting your first membership, it’s important to be respectful and aware of your surroundings. As a rule of thumb, you should always be considerate of trainers and clients. After all, you’re all working towards achieving health and fitness goals in the same space. Any weak link in this arena can distract others from reaching their goals. With that in mind, here are 5 gym sins and how to spot them:

1.   Not Re-racking the Weights
When lifting, especially with dumbbells, it is a major annoyance to go to do your exercise only to find that the dumbbells you’re looking for are missing. If you can spot someone using them, you simply have to wait your turn. But, if the person before you was too lazy to re-rack the weights, you may have to go on a bit of a hunt to find them, slowing down your workout. Plus, having loose weights on the floor can be very dangerous!

2.   Not Wiping Equipment
Let’s face it: if you’re working out hard, you’re probably also sweating pretty hard. While this is a good thing, nobody likes to lie down on a bench or sit on a bike that you just sweat all over. Do everyone else a favor and take a few seconds to go to a nearby gym wipe dispenser and clean it off for the next person. It keeps the gym clean and smelling nice, and helps prevent the spread of germs.

3.   Working Out While Sick
Although sometimes working out while sick can help you get through an annoying cold and get a better night’s sleep, for the most part you should really avoid the gym. If you have the flu, a stomach bug, or anything contagious, you should be responsible and do your part to prevent the spread of any contagious illnesses. The gym is a space where you’re bound to be in close proximity or have physical contact with surfaces that many people touch, which is prime for spreading bugs and other viruses. However, WebMD says you’re physically okay to workout so long as all of your symptoms are “above the neck.”

4.   Texting While People are Waiting
People have busy lives and usually try to squeeze a work out in the precious free time they have. If it’s busy at the gym or you suspect that somebody is waiting for any machine or area you’re using, be courteous and refrain from texting or talking on the phone. Even if it’s just a quick text, you will only annoy the person waiting. Get in, do your workout, and move on the next thing. It keeps the gym running smoothly and may even improve the quality of your workout.
5.   Talking to People with Earphones
On top of people squeezing the gym in their free time, a lot of gym-goers also use their workout as a time to decompress from the day. This means getting away from phone calls, coworkers, even family and friends and just having a little personal time. While you shouldn’t really be making conversation with strangers in the gym at all, especially avoid talking to people who have earphones in. Let them workout in peace unless it’s very important or you’re good friends.

If you’re new, going to the gym can be a really intimidating process. However, you have nothing to worry about the important thing is that you’re making an effort. People in the gym can be very friendly and usually are willing to help you along your journey, but a little respect goes a long way. Now get going!

Carl Turner has been training for as long as he can remember. If he’s not in the gym, he’s probably researching or writing about it.

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