I hope that the title was enough of a hint. Otherwise, this post is about gyms.
Just get on that treadmill and you will look like a superstar!
No my dear. It is not that easy. It takes hours upon days upon weeks and so forth to achieve that super-fit body, not to mention all the photo-editing, lighting and special effects. Chances are you’ll never look like Megan Fox or Brad Pitt. And be glad for it! Because this way you’re probably still gorgeous but people will appreciate you for more than that; your wit, your personality, your skills and craftiness, and you just being you. If you were ridiculously attractive (and no offense, you might be) people will never get past that and they will always swoon a little in your presence because of that fact (no matter how much they tell themselves it’s not important. It’s like seeing a delicious dish of food, we want it even if we’re really full!)
You are perfect the way you are… but we’ll make you better!
Personal trainers are for real. There are people out there with the proper education and experience to help support you in the goals you wish to reach regarding your physical condition. But in very many gyms, these personal trainers are just fitness nuts that have taken a few courses (or one), gotten the certificate and then go on to take notes and use preset formulas and schedules to try and get you into “peak” condition. Of course, they won’t go into detail to make sure this actually works with your health, diet, lifestyle, job, family, mental condition etc. But they will make sure that you are up to standards and that they look good and get good references. And a lot of money. For doing something that anyone with an inkling of interest could sit down and do. Now there’s the real stuff too, people who have put many days (and long nights) into learning about this, who have tried this on themselves and friends and who have learnt from the best. I’m just saying considering how many there are out there (at least 10 at the gym I go to) they can’t all be doing the very best. And there’s too much self-interest involved. “Hey miss, I’m a personal trainer. Let’s have s**”.
The mutual zoo.
Few places will make you as painstakingly self-aware as a gym. Not only are you (I) constantly taking sneak-peeks at others to see if they are more or less fit than you are and how well they are doing on the machines. No. You (I) have that constant nagging feeling of that someone, out of those 20-30 people in there working out, is looking at you, at any given moment, giving you that same harsh critique in their head. “Hmmm, her ass is a little saggy but it seems like she’s got a nice flat stomach. She needs to hit the stair climber more. Guess she’s just too lazy. I mean look at those sloppy sweatpants…” and so forth. How are you suppose to be able to relax and focus on your own physical health and awareness when there’s a constant hum of negative and judging thoughts around you? (And in your head. Oh my do I ever judge myself when I’m at the gym. Mirrors, scales, fitness tests… there’s any amount of equipment to help you feel worse about yourself.)
So just sign here and here and your life will be so much better…
Money. So much of it, for such little time spent there, such little wear on equipment, so little use of the staff. Yet they ask for a considerable amount and ask you to sign up for a way longer amount of time than you’re likely to spend going there before you realize that, oh yes, gyms kind of suck. Of course you don’t read the agreement because well, they are probably nice and everything is fine, just look at the hundreds of people that go here, and then one day you (or a friend of mine) goes there to cancel the gym and finds out that the person who told her that she needs to come into the gym in person and sign something… needs to have an appointment scheduled with her to sign something, so I’m sorry, we can’t cancel that for you right now, but we’ll make sure that this lady gives you a call. And if in the meantime we happen to make another withdrawal of your membership fees that is too bad. And if we then spend an hour trying to convince you to stay then that is for your own benefit.
Gyms are evil corporations who do not care about the general fitness and health of the population (in that case they’d be government funded and we wouldn’t have to pay to go). They just want your money, and for you to tell your friends how great it is so they can also get your friends money, and for people who are already really fit to get even more fit and give them more money. And I am cancelling my membership when I get my next paycheck.