The gym is a solo errand for me. Just me and my kicks. I go in, earbuds cranked and game face on. Ok, it’s more like my music is just loud.
In the past, I’ve only run, and I did that a lot. Any strength training I did was only bodyweight kind of stuff—scissor kicks, push ups, Russian twists, planks. I go to the occasional class too. (I’ve tried several, but hip-hop is the only one I frequent regularly.) I got into weights (small, small weights) a little while back. The cardio side of the gym feels more like home, but thanks to the help of my brother, I branched into uncharted territory—the weight side. Many thoughts go through my head as I workout, and my guess is, we’re all having some of the same ones. So, to bring the workout community together, I’ve explicitly shared mine below. Be honest: you know you can relate.
1. Where should I stand with these free weights?
2. Am I too close to this guy on the weight bench?
3. Remember to breathe.
4. But don’t breathe too heavily.
5. I think that was ten.
6. Close enough.
7. I can hear this guy’s cries of agony through my music, which is a saying a lot.
8. Why isn’t Instagram loading?
9. I’ve checked every social media app and my mail; I guess it’s time for another rep.
10. I wonder how much longer that lady’s going to be because I need that machine next.
11. Wow! Look at how much weight that man is bench pressing!
12. Is she gone yet?
13. Do people really watch themselves in these mirrors?
14. That guy is.
15. That lady definitely is.
16. I hope I can lift these weights to put them back on the shelf.
17. Who was lifting 120 pounds on this machine?
18. Or pulling. I guess technically you pull on this one. But still.
19. When did they put in that ski-pull-leg-press machine?
20. Wonder when I’ll quit shaking so much?
21. Does everyone else shake?
22. Is that man shaking?
23. I’m too far away to tell.
24. Why did my music just cut off?
25. She looks like she might be going to say something to me.
26. Please don’t ask if we can swap out.
27. Better start another rep and fast.
29. What are these workers always doing walking around with their little clipboards?
30. What are they writing down?
31. Ok, where’s the other attachment thingee?
32. Is that lady done with it because I need it on this other machine.
33. Why is this clip so difficult?
34. I should have just left the first attachment piece.
36. Wonder how long my strides look on the treadmill.
37. Oh yes, lady, we are going to race.
38. This song isn’t fast enough.
39. This song isn’t workout-ish enough.
40. The first two tenths are always great.
41. Two miles today.
42. Maybe I’ll just do a mile today.
43. No, I said I’d do two.
44. Why is it I always feel better the last half?
45. If I had said I was going to run three miles would I still feel better at one and a half?
46. No, definitely not.
47. YES DONE!
48. Now walk it out.