Confessions of a Fitness Junkie

When is it ok to speak your mind?

Posted on: July 31, 2011

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Normally, my time spent at the gym is a relaxing time. A time for me to concentrate on something I have a bit of control over (my fitness), a time for me to focus, and a time for me to feel like I’ve accomplished something during the day.

Yesterday was a little different.

The lifting area was a little busy for a Saturday morning, but I’m used to finding alternative ways to complete my lifting routine for the day if the equipment I need is being used by someone else, so the crowd there didn’t bother me very much.

It was a different story in the cardio machine area.

It wasn’t very busy there, which was nice. I was easily able to step on my selected machine for the day (ARC Trainer was the machine of choice). I put on my iPod and started my workout. Then I heard it…loud talking and laughter. I turned up the volume on my iPod. But, the talking and laughter got louder. Was there a group of women talking behind me? I turned around – no one was there. I looked down the line of cardio machines.

Three machines down from mine was a woman doing her workout, talking on her phone with a hands-free device. And she wasn’t just making a short, I’m-checking-in-with-my-girlfriend-about-today’s-lunch kind of call. This woman was so into her conversation, when it got heated (which happened a few times), she came to a complete stop on her machine so that she could wave her hands in the air and get louder, making her point to the person on the other end. She proceeded to carry on a conversation for the full 30 minutes of my workout. She was so loud, I couldn’t turn the volume on my music loud enough to drown her out. I tried giving her the death stare (as did many others in the gym) to get her to realize she was disturbing others, but she was oblivious to anyone else.

I thought about stopping and moving to a different machine, but why should I disrupt my workout because someone else was being a jerk? I thought about walking over to her machine at the precise time that the “Be courteous to others and don’t talk on your cell phone” message appeared on the gym’s televisions, but that would disrupt my workout, too.

So, what was I to do?

I ended up just finishing my workout, brooding the whole time, staring at her, hoping she would realize her rudeness. She didn’t. I left the gym workout complete, but feeling angry and annoyed.

What should I have done? I’m not good with confrontation, especially with strangers and in public, but what this woman was doing was a 9 out of 10 on the rudeness scale (IMO). Even 24 hours later, I’m still annoyed and appalled.

What would you have done? Am I right in being annoyed, or am I just being overly sensitive, irritable, and overreacting (which I have a tendency to do)?

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5 Responses to "When is it ok to speak your mind?"

Ooh… the gym staff should never let that happen! You shouldn’t need to do anything!! Bad gym staff… bad.

Thanks, Natalie! I was wondering if the gym staff would do anything, but they didn’t seem to notice (or didn’t care!).

Yeah, I would have asked a staff person to do something about it. I find it unbelievably rude when people talk on the phone in the gym. Does your gym have a no-cell phone policy? Maybe talk to them about creating one if not?

Unfortunately, my gym doesn’t have a cell phone policy, they just “strongly discourage use on the floor.” 😦 You better believe I’ve made my opinion heard on that now!

you are right about being annoyed, look at the situations that go on train rides, etc, where people can’t get off the cell phone. I don’t understand when people, I mean average people became so important. It’s not like we are doctor’s or saving someone’s life by taking call immediately. My gym has No policy on cell phones, and really she wouldn’t have been any different than 2 women being there talking. Glad you pushed on with your workout.

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