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Weight Lifters

Entertainment has been an established part of the American culture almost since its founding. The types of entertainment that most Americans enjoy in today’s world are going to the movies, going out to eat, and exercising. Different forms of exercise vary from running and playing sports to weight lifting. Those who enjoy weight lifting can choose to do so in the privacy of their home, in a community center like the YMCA, or in a health club. At a health club one can expect to find a wide variety of people; however, some of these people add to the downside of working out at a local health club because they can be annoying and obnoxious. Three types of these annoying, obnoxious people found at the weight room of a local health club are the show-off, the know-it-all, and the wanderer; these types can be identified by their physical appearance, their social behavior, and their attitude.

The first type, the show-of, is known by his flashy appearance, his misanthropic social skills, and his arrogant attitude. The show-off is a single male in his twenties who drives a European luxury car; he always comes to the gym wearing a tank top to display his deep tan and a pair of black and green spandex shorts. He is heavily built and all his muscles are well defined. But he is a man with poor social skills; he seldom talks to another soul and always works out by himself. He frequently ignores the greetings and good-byes of the health club employees; when he does answer a friendly “Hi, how is it going” or a “See you later,” he does so in a deep, blunt, morbid tone of voice. He also likes to emphasize how strong and masculine he is by working out at the very front and center of the weight room, where everyone can see him. He refuses requests for help from others like a cheerleader refusing to go on a date with an pimply, nerdy classmate. Most people who work out at health clubs are glad to do without the show-off.

The second type is the know-it-all; he is identified by his commonplace appearance, moderately developed social skills, and commanding attitude. He is strong and well built, but not to the extent of the show-off. He is a married man in his mid thirties to early forties who wears athletic shorts and a gray, short-sleeve T-shirt with the name of the health club printed on the front. He is not a hermit like the show-off; he engages in conversations with his friends and makes small talk with strangers at the gym. Unlike the show-off, he tends to work out with groups of two or three and is not reluctant to ask for the help of others. He can be quite unpleasant because he verbally reprimands others for not doing an exercise in the correct form; he never misses a chance to remind everyone that he is an expert at weight lifting and finds joy and fulfillment in showing others the proper ways to lift weights. Working out in the presence of a know-it-all is a very frustrating experience for most people.

The third type is the wanderer; he is a family man in his late forties who finds coming to a health club a way of escape from his life at home. He wears a white headband, a pair of casual shorts, a white, cotton T-shirt one size too big, and a pair of old sneakers. This guy’s strong point is his social skills because he is addicted to socializing. He talks to anyone—the gym employees, the lady on the treadmill, the guy doing squats—because he can’t live without hearing himself talk for more than a minute. As one would imagine, he has no work out routine; therefore he is overweight and out of shape. His attitude can best be described as free loading, because he relies on the help of other people when he is working out.  When he asks the guy doing the leg press to spot him on the bench press, he puts in as little effort as possible and makes the spotter do most of the lifting. The wanderer is by far the most dangerous to one’s routine because he constantly interrupts it by talking or by asking for help.

In conclusion, the three types of people that one needs to watch out for are the show-off, the know-it-all, and the wanderer. The show-off breaks one's concentration like a dry twig, the know-it-all lets all the air out of one’s confidence, and the wanderer interrupts one’s will to work out like a constantly ringing telephone. One should avoid excessive exposure to any of these three at all costs or the routine that one has put so much effort into to perfect, and the body one has worked so constantly to sculpt, will be a distant memory.

--Roberto Loucel

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