Yesterday, I went to the roommate’s gym (a review will be up soon) to do some cardio. My roommate has a trainer and the trainer developed a 30 minute cardio routine that she wanted me to do with her. We’re at two different fitness levels but we thought we could work out side by side and encourage each other not to get off the machine, go home and watch all of the new cable channels we ordered. The routine is super high intensity but I’m supposed to tri-anything right? Right!
The routine starts with a quick stretch and then hop on the elliptical. Don’t get too comfortable on the elliptical because your only there for 10 minutes for a warm-up. Make your way to the stair climber and get to stepping at a rate of 65 steps per minute. You take single steps for two minutes and then you skip a step for one minute. You alternate these intervals
until you die 10 times. You should try it if you are feeling suicidal want a good workout.
I was already feeling a little bad about how out of shape I was because after the first minute I slammed on the emergency stop and clutched my chest because I was sure I was having a heart attack. Once I convinced myself that I didn’t need immediate medical attention, I started back up at 60 steps a minute. I hit the emergency stop again because I was sweating like a horse and my glasses had slid off my face and I didn’t want to break them. I then got sweat in my eye momentarily blinding myself. I hadn’t even made it to the skipped step portion of the interval and I already had two health scares! My roommate told me that the feeling of impending death was normal and that I could do it. I lowered the speed to 40 steps per minute and kept stepping.
I’m sure the emergency stop slamming, the clutching of my chest, and the loud and rapid breathing are worthy of a few quick glances. What I don’t appreciate is the dude on the machine next to us, unabashedly staring with contempt and judgment! The stair climber has a television. Watch that not us! What pissed me off even further was that Judge McJudgeFace had HORRIBLE form. Sure he might have felt superior doing about 85 steps per minute, but he was slouched over and had most of his weight on his arms and shoulders. How are you all over here, openly judging me and you’re not even doing the exercise right? He’s lucky I didn’t have the strength to flip my middle finger up at him!
I hate gym judgers because they make what is already an uncomfortable and vulnerable experience even worse for me. I’m not athletic and I sweat and jiggle and I don’t enjoy people seeing me be less than awesome. Gym judgers and the fear of being judged are one of the reasons I become apprehensive about trying new fitness classes that don’t explicitly list “Beginner’s” in the title. I know that eventually I need to block all the haters out and concentrate on what I’m doing and why I’m there, but until I reach that place of enlightenment, I will silently curse gym judgers with shin splints and chaffing.
Have you ever felt judged at the gym? Was it in your head or was it a genuine judgment?