1. You have a beach towel.
This could be Mickey & Minnie, some Polo Sport one from the mid '90s or something loud, splashy and pink. Either way, you're just kind of dragging it around, not really knowing what to do with it, except that you know you should have a towel at the gym. Here's a tip: You wipe your nasty sweat off the machines with it.
2. You're wearing jean shorts.
Ah... this is one of my favorites. Ladies, yours are inevitably cutoffs because, let's face it, that's the last time you wore shorts. Fellas, it doesn't really matter what yours are; guys don't wear jean shorts anymore.
3. You are chugging Gatorade, Red Bull or Vitamin Water like it's your job.
And it's not like you're thirsty... you haven't done anything. But you're at the gym, so clearly you need to hydrate. Excessively. Like, more than any of us who are actually sweating and possibly working up a thirst. Free tip: All those drinks have many calories, so you're technically taking in more calories by going to the gym. Tip #2: It's called water.
4. You have a CD Discman.
I'm not sure I need to explain this one any further. But I will say that they have these really cool things nowadays called Mp3 players and iPods which don't weigh 17 pounds and don't even skip! Imagine that... no skipping!
5. You do a nifty quad stretch in between every exercise.
This is where you just finished "a set" on that cute machine where you twist back and forth at a feverish pace because you think it's going to get rid of your love handles, and then you stand next to the machine, death-grip it and pull your ankle up behind you. Editor's note: You did not just work that muscle.
6. You are gnawing away on a Powerbar.
See #3: Gatorade, chugging.
7. You get on the bike and don't understand why it won't turn on when you press the buttons.
I know, this one's a little tricky, and I almost feel unfair adding it in here. But, surprise, it's not broken! Oh, and moving to the next one won't help; it's not broken either. Tried-and-true tip: Start peddling, and the pretty screen with magically light up.
8. You are reading the instructions on every machine.
This is not wrong, and I don't fault you for it -- at least you're trying to do it right (see #5: quad stretch, nifty). However, you are taking up way to much of my precious time, and my nice, neat compact 30-minute workout is somehow now ticking and tocking longer and longer, and I'm not getting up earlier in the morning to accommodate for your decoding of the torture devices. Gym-goer tip: Please get a personal trainer. They're free for a session or two for new gym members, and they'll explain the scary machines in plain English.
9. You grab a smoothie from the juice bar on your way out.
Again with the healthy eating and drinking... Please, once again refer to #3: Gatorage, chugging and #6: Powerbar, gnawing. You know you're going to eat as soon as you get home, so what is this extra feeding for?
10. You are in the waaaay back of the class.
I understand you don't want to be in the front because people will see you, but here's one you may not have thought of: We can see you even better when you're in the back. That's right, those rooms have glass walls in the back, and you know what's on the other side of the glass? The entire rest of the gym... full of people who have nothing to do between sets but watch you almost bust your ass. Tippy tip: Try the middle for two reasons: a) You should be closer to the front so you can actually see the teacher and learn how to do it, and b) We're too busy watching the back people to find you in the middle.
Have any more to add? Please leave a comment. I love these.
Oh, and Happy New Year!