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Globo-Gym: A Guide

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Globo-Gym: A Guide

His stomach flops up and down, up and down as he gasps for breath five minutes in. The determination is waning from his eyes and the price tags on his new track suit are an obvious indication that he is not committed to losing the weight. Exhausted, sweat pores down his forehead as he tramples the treadmill. He is an example of an amateur, fair-weather exerciser. He, along with the super buff old people on the Stairmasters, health fanatics occupying the exercise bikes, hormonal boys filling up the weight room, and giggling sorority girls using the ellipticals, fill the gym. Certain types of people tend to stick to certain types of equipment and will rarely stray, allowing regular gym-goers to identify who will be occupying what machine and for how long, which is surprisingly helpful when arranging your workout schedule.

The fitness club parking lot is always the most packed in January. And who is causing this sudden influx in attendance? The wannabe weight losers. These are the people who have made New Year's resolutions to get in shape or slim down. They horde around the treadmills as if these machines can magically make the pounds melt off and the muscles bulk up. By February, these undisciplined exercisers seem to realize that this isn't the case and give up, never to be seen again until next January. For those of you who are regulars at the gym, the lack of determination in the resolution-makers is a definite benefit, as this leaves the treadmills deserted and open for your use. Another advantage of these out-of-shape optimists is the confidence boost they give you. Although their loud panting can be slightly aggravating, their lethargic speed always makes you feel good about yourself.

Once in a while, the "temporary gym joiners" will take pride in their newfound muscles and become a permanent figure at your health club. They have enjoyed exercising, maybe a little too much, and they tend to slowly morph into a fitness fanatic. Exercise gurus are addicted to working out and can be caught at the gym two or more hours a day, rain or shine. They are muscular and tan powerhouses with less than 5% body fat who prefer to take out their raging dedication on the exercise bikes; but beware, with their unwavering determination, they may be on the bike for a while. No matter how long the exercise junkies ride those stationary cycles, you will never see these stocky competitors dripping with sweat. No machine is a match for their strength or enough of a challenge.

The next category of people that are ever present at the fitness center are the super buff old people. Although you only find a rare few per gym, their constant downpour of sweat and soft moans and groans never fail to distract you from your own perspiring misery. Ripped and slender, they take up residence on the Stairmasters where their lack of youth, yet abundance of wrinkles and merriment, has no effect whatsoever on their stair stepping experience. They linger here for hours at a time, never exhausting, and slowly shredding down your previously gained, wannabe weight loser induced self esteem. To add insult to injury, this is only one stop in their day. Next they'll ace it up on the tennis courts for a few hours then head off to Mimi's Cafe for the Early Bird Special.

The weight room is usually the place most sane people aim to avoid. After all, the hormonal teenage boys that dwell here can get rowdy in a room full of heavy machinery. However, the adolescent boys are not alone in their quest to claim the prized machine in front the windows, where the passing girls can see them. Middle aged men join them in their pursuit of this coveted location. Differentiating the distinctions between the teenagers and midlife bachelors can be a challenge because no matter their age, these guys all look the same. In their baggy basketball shorts and skintight Under Armor shirts designed to impress the ladies, these guys think they are hot stuff. But cut them some slack, they are just trying to pick up chicks and get buff all at the same time. What great multi-taskers. If only we all had the skill to squat 60 pounds while flexing our entire body and winking at the lovely senorita strutting by those treasured windows.

Such situations lead us to the next group: the all-made-up sorority girls. It is a miracle that these females can work out without breaking a sweat. Even after an hour, their heavy makeup is still intact and their glittery, pink tank tops are pit-stainless as they flip through Teen Vogue. These girls are in the habit of using the elliptical machines but can be recognized anywhere because of their booty shorts and logos like "You Can't Touch This" or "Dancing Queen" that are printed on the back of everything they wear. However, the most frustrating thing about these girls is not their clothes, it is how they wear their hair. They wear it hanging down, loose, and straightened, like the real world has no influence over their perfectly coiffed locks.

May God bless the January joiners, the fitness fiends, the cut elderly, the single boys who are just looking for a lady, and the bubbly sorority members, for I would never be able to plan my workouts without their predictability.





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