Several reasons to avoid gym

Probably, there are a good many people who go to the gym regularly, love it and can see no problems with it. Good for them. For the rest of us, there’s something toxic about gyms (other than that awful chemical they make you wipe down machines with), something that effectively and repeatedly squashes our aspiration to look like.

Personally, I detest the following:

1. The smell

The scent of a gym is as distinct as it is hard to place. I think of it as a bold recipe combining the years of sweat that have been absorbed into the cinderblock walls, the mats and rugs on the floor, the seats of the machines and the insides of the lockers, PLUS the sweat currently being sweated and soaking every molecule of air in every room PLUS the slow the rusting of machines due to – you guessed it – sweat, PLUS body spray, PLUS hair gel PLUS piss. It’s scrumptious.

2. The TV channels

When I’m running on the treadmill, and my body’s mutinying against this new and entirely unnecessary stress, I want to watch none of the following: the Food Channel (it reminds me that there’s a world where people never exercise and eat cheese and bread and polenta all day), CSI (it makes me nauseous), cars (, news (it seems so silly when you’re finding it difficult to breathe) or music videos (why would I ever want to watch music videos)? But then again there’s really nothing I want to watch while exercising. Something about the simpering placidity of televised programming—perhaps its failure to keep up with my heartbeat—makes me anxious.

3. The employees

Consistently brainless and obnoxious. Every motive someone might have for working at a gym is a bad one.

4. Mirrors

Gym mirrors provide visitors with unwelcome blasts of self-consciousness and are probably the major reason people cancel their memberships. Everyone who walks into a gym is looking to either gain more confidence or maintain a fragile ego – chances are they’ve spent ample time loathing themselves in their bathroom. Mirrors are also completely unnecessary for working out. The only thing I’ve learned from this that I look like a radioactively-enlarged baby when I run.

5. Time distortion

Time doesn’t really exist in gyms, and I’ve been on both ends of this deception. I’ll think I’ve been working out for an hour and be startled to find that barely ten minutes have passed. Other times I’ll think I’ve only been working out for an hour and realize – OK the opposite never happens. It’s always the really-ten-minutes thing.

6. Music/Muzak

Like with the 9aman‘s channels, almost no song is perfect to listen to when you’re exercising. Unless you’re a masochistic health-crazed freak working out is no physical pleasure for your body, and the dismal mental state you’re in while quaking under enormous (!) 10-pound free-weights can ruin almost any song. Perhaps that’s why gyms are resigned to playing the ass-end of the top 40 list.

7. Getting hit on

It’s just the worst. You sense them looking, meet their eyes in the mirror and then tense up for the next hour feeling like everything you do is being watched.

8. Getting rejected

Worster. You wait for them to look up, meet their eyes in the mirror and then for the next hour

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