Upon arriving at the gym car park I am met with the usual site of an empty car park to my right and a full car park to my left and, you guessed it, the gym is situated on the left. Yes, the people are going to the gym to try and get fit but expecting them to have to do that extra ten-meter walk from the other side of the car park is far too much. Sometimes I wonder if it wouldn’t just be easier and cheaper for most people to cancel their ridiculously expensive monthly membership and just cycle to the gym and back every day, I’m sure they’d get as good a workout.
Gyms in Oxford near where I live are full of the more affluent types, so when you go into the changing room you are bombarded with a mixture of designer clothing and expensive sportswear. The women then proceed to spend a good half an hour getting ready, making sure every hair is in place and their makeup is immaculately done (we are still at the gym right?). Once this has happened they then make their way into the gym whereas if in some kind of synchronized gym team they all step on to their individual treadmills, pull their iPods out, and switch them on.
Now that the 10-minute treadmill warm-up has been completed comes the ‘stretching’ and ‘yoga’ which is conveniently placed in front of the weights section where all the pumped-up, steroid riddled men can watch. Most people then take this opportunity to have a well-earned break by the water machine, a quick 15-minute chat, and drink to get over the 10 minutes of exercise they’ve actually done so far in the hour that they have been there.
Now, it should be noted that not all of the people who come to the gym are like this; this tends to be the attractive women who eat very little. You then get the women who do the complete opposite and put their bodies through hell, running for about an hour none stop on the treadmill followed by weights and go on the cycling machine. These are the kind of people who come kitted out in professional running merchandise with 5 sweatbands on, grunting, covered in sweat, and throwing water all over themselves. On second thoughts I think I may actually prefer the shallow, attractive women!
When the workout is over and I head back into the changing rooms again I am met with a more intensive version of the pre-gym routine. There is shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, moisturizers, you name it! I have never stuck around until they have actually finished getting ready, I tend to leave in between the sweaty march of the keen gym pros and the gym bunnies. I must say that I am fascinated by how people behave and it never fails to entertain me doing my ‘people watching’ whilst working out.