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My Gym Experience

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For over 25 years I worked out in public gyms, so I have a lot of experience with what to expect and how they function.  It was a great experience but one in which I never reached my full potential until I started working out at home with Beachbody home based workouts.  Recently, I was on vacation in Florida and the condo gym was not . . . lets say up to standard.  So, I began to research and found a local Gold’s Gym just a few miles from where I was staying.  It was a great gym, plenty of room for cardio classes/equipment, free weights and machine equipment.  Since I was a guest, I was given a week pass for 35 dollars ( half of what another local gym was charging!!).  On the first morning of my vacation I woke up at 4:30 A.M. as normal and was very excited to workout at a Gold’s Gym, it was a “dream” of mine since I started to workout at 11 years old.  When I started to workout I quickly realized why I prefer to workout at home.  Here is a list of what I realized during my week at Gold’s Gym.

1.) Too Much Talking – One of the first things I noticed as I was warming up was how many people were talking and how few people were actually working out.  I’ve experienced this in my own gym workouts, you start to workout and then someone, either your lifting partner(s) or someone else working out asks you a question, then before you know it you’ve spent 10 minutes in conversation.  This happens a lot in public gyms where people spend more time socializing than lifting.

2.) No body was sweating!! – When you workout you should sweat! Right?  After a few sets of my workout  I reached for my towel to wipe the sweat from my face and arms.  It was then that I looked around and realized that even though most of the people there had started before me, none of them were sweating.  By the time I had finished my 35 minute workout I was drenched in sweat and feeling great about what I have accomplished.  Still very few people in the gym were actually sweating.

3.) People didn’t know what to do  The next thing I noticed was that most of the people there really didn’t have a plan or seem to know what they wanted to accomplish.  For example, I watched a man start off on the Chest Press machine in which he performed 3 sets that took approximately 10 minutes because of the long rest times.  Next, he moved to the curl machine and finally did a few sets of shoulder press.  Personally he looked like he was trying out the equipment more than he was trying to workout.

4.) Germs, germs and more germs – I’m not a “germaphobe”, I work at a high school and coached football for 17 years, so I’m pretty used to it.  However, most people in a public gym will clean off the equipment when they are finished, even though I noticed they had sanitizing wipes all over the place.  In my home gym I clean and sanitize every thing after I’m done, so I know its clean, plus it keeps my wife from suggesting my workout room stinks.

5.) A lot of wasted time – I general I noticed a majority of the people in the gym spent more time talking, walking around, checking their phones, reading magazines or just sitting on equipment trying to decide what to do next.

6.) Vacant Squat Racks – Arnold Schwarzenegger mentioned this problem in the latest addition of Muscle and Fitness, too many people skip leg day.  He refers to it as a disease that’s spreading quickly throughout the country known as “chicken legs.”  The only time I saw the squat racks being used in the 4 days that I worked out at Gold’s Gym was when people were curling or shrugging.  I never saw anyone squat, lunge or use any other leg equipment.

I’m not advocating people skip the gym.  If you’re getting great results at your local gym, then I say keep it up.  But if you’re like some of the people I described above you need to seriously overhaul your exercise program and realize that you can get better, more productive and shorter workouts, if you have the right knowledge and the right information.

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