By Lauren Lodder of Mommy Owl
I love the gym for innumerable reasons, not the least of which is it provides reliable childcare for two whole, glorious, kid-free hours. For two hours, I have the freedom to exercise (or not), take a shower, catch up on work, read a book, or stare off into space. It’s cheaper than therapy, and these visits make me a calmer, happier mom.
Until they don’t.
Occasionally, I have the misfortune of interacting with another gym member who doesn’t demonstrate what, in my eyes, constitutes proper gym etiquette. Normally, I can roll my eyes and move on. Other days, when I have banked less than 5 hours of sleep and my toddler has thrown her 20th tantrum of the day, these 10 behaviors leave me utterly unhinged.
1. Going to the gym to leer at and/or hit on other members. If you ogle and/or proposition other members (irrespective of wedding bands or pregnant bellies), you’re making the gym experience awkward for everyone.
2. Providing members with unsolicited advice. Even though the gym does not technically employ them, these people give other members unwanted feedback on how they might improve their fitness regimens or lose stubborn belly fat around their waists.
3. Hogging equipment. Even though people are hovering, these pesky gym members are in no rush. No amount of staring or heavy breathing will encourage them to finish their sets any sooner.
4. Not wiping sweat off equipment. You might leave your sweaty butt imprints on equipment and think no one notices, but we do.
5. Taking up all the mirror space. It doesn’t matter that the gym is busy. Nobody better come within 2 feet of their yoga mats or else.
6. Talking on the phone within earshot of everyone. These people have super important, loud conversations over the phone while exercising on the treadmill.
7. Leaving clumps of hair in the shower. These gym-goers wipe strands of hair on the shower walls and clog up the drains so that other members get to stand in two inches of foul water.
8. Playing with their cell phones in the locker room, including sending their friends messages and take gelfies (a.k.a. gym-selfies) in an area where everyone is naked. Let me repeat that: NAKED!
9. Lifting heavier than necessary and letting equipment slam. These fitness buffs are not worried about damaging community equipment, injuring their bodies, or scaring the crap out of anyone nearby. They will press 250 pounds no matter what.
10. Selling a protein powder—and this is their target audience. These salespeople have decided the gym is the perfect platform on which to promote their weight loss supplements or to recruit other saleswomen. (Helpful hint: it’s not.)
Out of respect for tired moms everywhere, please behave at the gym. We aren’t asking for much—just, you know, to move about our days without losing our sanity completely. K? Thanks!
This post was originally published on Mommy Owl.
About Lauren Lodder
Lauren Lodder earned her BA from UC Berkeley and her MA from CSUF. Before becoming a work-at-home mom and a freelance writer, she taught writing and literature classes at the college level. Her essays have appeared on Scary Mommy, Mom Fuse, and I AM Magazine. You can find her blogging on Mommy Owl and on Facebook.