Gym observations: a second look

After my last column, many patrons and employees pointed out many things I did not include. I want to take this opportunity inform everyone else of other issues that arise in the gym.

If you think you smell a little bit, to everyone else you smell a “lotta bit.” Switch your shirt clothes, take a shower or apply deodorant.

The fitness room staff does not control the music in the room. If you do not like the music, bring your own. There is no way that we can make everyone happy all of the time, so we attempt to find stations where most people at the time will be happy. Your annoyance is in no way intentional. This is no different at any other health club.

When requesting a spot from someone on staff or anyone else in the room, don’t delude yourself into thinking you are going to lift all of the weight in the room. After you are unable to complete the amount of repetitions, don’t make up a phony excuse. The situation usually unfolds like this: “Can I get a spot?” “Yeah, how many reps?” “About six.” After completing three: “Man, my shoulder is starting to hurt again.” Don’t make up a story because you were unable to achieve your goal-accept it and continue your workout. Also, people do not enjoy spotting you for long periods of time. If you have over four sets and you are not trying to lift a maximum amount of weight, you need a workout partner.

This goes along with strange workouts. Just because you read Musclemag and saw a workout that Ronnie Coleman is using, there is no reason to believe that exercising for hours on end will result with a body similar to his. Strange workouts do not always equal better results.

When using accessories from the fitness desk, know that the workout gloves we have are never cleaned. When borrowing straps or using your own, remember that they are used for pulling, not pushing. Your priority should be to develop grip strength and not rely solely on straps to continue an exercise once you reach fatigue.

My purpose is not to humiliate those individuals who do these things but to help them realize what they are doing and how others interpret their actions. If you are one of the people mentioned in these two columns you should understand that you are not doing yourself any favors by not seeking correct information or having complaints before realizing why a policy is in place. We want your experience in the weight room to be as stress-free as possible. Just remember that you play an important role in this process.

Vontilla Steven can be contacted at