This is why we don’t have nice things

This week I’m in Louisville visiting with family and relaxing. While in this town I have about three different places to go train at and for my Monday heavy squatting I went to the gym where my in-laws have a membership. On the drive over I was thinking about what to write about this week and let’s just say I got some material on this day.

Walking in the gym

Now imagine you are a front desk worker at a respectable gym catering mostly to older white collar individuals and in walks a guy wearing oversized sweats, full beard, unkempt hair, and smiling like a person who is trying to con his way in to the gym. Over his shoulder is his gym bag that has a weight belt wrapped around it and a pair of weird black metal hook braces on the front strap (my gravity boots).

Needless to say I wasn’t surprised when the check in lady was a little less than pleasant, but the other guy behind the counter recognized me from my periodic drop-ins and got me in just fine. I just made sure to smile and be patient while it got worked out quickly.

Key point here is: just be nice. Be friendly and eventually the other person will have no choice but at least be a bit pleasant to you. No point in wasting aggression meant for the barbell on someone doing customer service.

Setting up

Once I got to the gym I started going through my normal warm up and ran in to one of the trainers there that I’ve known for the past few years and usually talk to this time of year. The guy has definitely filled out and has been doing a lot more pulling work. He was setting up for his small group that was doing some lifting and conditioning work in the corner of this gym. I started getting loose and set up a bar to squat with in their Rogue rack and utilizing one of their rogue bars. I wrote a post a while back on different barbells and given the age and spin on their other bars I thought the rogue was best even though it didn’t have any center knurling and was whippy as hell.

Warm ups went well worked my way up to my top set with 475 and got the aforementioned trainer to spot me and put the safeties up. The set went well and I hit the reps solidly, and then aggressively racked the weight.

This is where things went to hell.

The bar then bounced up and down sending the clip off the ending and jumped out of the rack on the right side. At this point the plates start flying off the right side slamming on the ground with all of the softness of 45lbs. hitting the floor. The guy spotting me with lightning fast reflexes caught the bar and pinned it under the hook so that the now empty right side of the bar (compared to the loaded left side of the bar) wouldn’t sail in to the next rack and possibly take someone out.

At this point I’m helping him out with reloading the right side of the bar so it won’t flip. Another trainer comes flying around the corner (since this is a big gym) to make sure everything is ok. The guy holding the bar did me a solid by explaining that the clip failed and it wasn’t my fault. Needless to say I thanked him for catching the bar and noticed a lot of people looking at us with looks of concern for the rest of the time I was training.

Afterwards I check the safety that caught the bar and realize that it is bent and probably needs to be hammered back in to position so it can sit appropriately on a rack. The bar and plates where fine, surprisingly didn’t bend the bar at all so that was nice.

But wait, there’s more.

Bonus: Don’t be that person

I was finishing up after doing the rest of my heavy squats and hit some other accessory work when a girl walks in and puts her stuff down directly next to my workout bag. I think nothing of it and just keep training. She is obviously doing some texting on her phone and sets it down next to my bag seemingly every minute.

I wrap up everything except for my occlusion work. So I walk over to my bag to grab my wraps to get this pain train started. When I lean over to grab my wraps out of my bag I notice her phone is face up and oh wait… she is definitely sexting with some dude and I just saw a whole lot of that guy. Thank god for strategically placed towels.

Now I don’t have the best poker face for when I’m surprised much less shocked. Maybe I shouldn’t have looked, but the dang screen was right next to my bag and I had to in fact reach over her phone to get my wraps. I stand up with my wraps in my hand and I’m sure my eyes twice their normal size. She notices my reaction and then proceeds to mean mug the hell out of me. I smile and laugh and go about my occlusion work while she mean mugs me some more, grabs her phone and scurries out of that part of the gym.

So the lesson here is when sending adult pictures please do your best to at least lock your phone, or face it down, or not be on the texting screen, or maybe not do it while you are in a public space. But, after you get awkwardly observed in this behavior by a random stranger please be sure to angrily look at them as much as possible.

Wrap up

So nothing like a fun session while on the road. When in doubt be nice and try not to break things (though I obviously fail at that on occasion). Also make sure you aren’t on your phone much at all and if you are sending certain photos try and be discrete. Have a happy holidays everyone.

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