I bit the bullet and joined a regular gym. This will be a supplement to my garage gym when I’m away from home in a secret, undisclosed location. My home garage gym has quite a bit of non-traditional globo-gym equipment. Clubbells, slam balls, medicine balls, rings, kettlebells, etc… For better or worse, I haven’t been following a “normal” lifting program. My swinging heavy clubs and jumping around on plyo boxes has fixed my back pain but hasn’t done much towards traditional strength measurements. So in anticipation of going to the regular gym, I searched the interwebs and found a pretty basic globo-gym lifting program.
It’s what you’d expect – every other day schedule of pulling movements, another day of pushing heavy stuff, one day of legs, repeat. Armed with a list of what to do, I took a deep breath and walked into the gym. Luckily it wasn’t busy, or I probably would have turned right around and left. I’m self-conscious just in general, so a gym environment is one of the worse places to be. It’s hard to hide all the jiggly bits. I have to wander around to find the right machine and figure out how to use it. And worse of all, I usually have some steroid monster watching me having to reduce the weight on a machine down to 10-year-old girl levels.
Anyway, I started in on my new lifting routine. It went pretty well. I didn’t drop anything and felt like it sorta looked like I knew what I was doing. I started thinking, this isn’t bad. Why hadn’t I done this before? I finished the last set of an exercise and pulled out the phone to see what was next. Lateral raises. I knew this would be challenging. I have a messed-up shoulder that hurts 24×7. Not to mention the aforementioned lack of strength.
I really wasn’t sure how much weight I’d be able to use. The gym had huge stacks of dumbbells against one of the walls. They were fancy dumbbells, coated with a rubberized material – each weight size a different color. I started picking up weights and experimenting to see what I’d be able to lift with my jacked-up shoulder. None of them seemed right. After picking through every color I could see, I was down to the final one. A big pile of shiny pink dumbbells.
I picked one up and, son of bitch, it was the exact right weight. Pink. It had to be pink. I glanced around the gym and nobody was paying attention. Deep sigh. I grabbed the pink dumbbells and went over to a mirror to start my sets. As I worked through the reps, I started breathing harder. Grunting a little bit. As I said, my shoulder hurts, so I was having to push a bit to complete each set.
I glanced at myself in the mirror. I had an awkward grimace on my face. Sweat was dripping down my brow. And then the worst scenario for a self conscious gym newbie happened. A couple of younger, fit, gym-bros came to the station next to me and started loading up big time weight plates. There I am, huffing and puffing, horrible form, struggling to lift up my shiny pink dumbbells. Of course.
Not much I could do other than bravely finish my set and then do the walk of shame across the gym to put away my pink weights. Sigh.
Working out gets expensive when you now have to join a second gym where you won’t be recognized. I checked; they don’t have pink weights.