The 12 worst guys at the gym
Some guys go to the health club to, you know, get healthy. Others go to stare at ESPN, compulsively sniff their own pits, or just stand around in the nude drinking cucumber water and talking about mutual funds.
The Naked Shaver
How to recognize him: There he is at the mirror, meticulously denuding his beard line.
As made famous by: Ryan Gosling in “Crazy Stupid Love.”
Also probably made famous by: Ryan Gosling in real life.
Accessory: Towel. To be worn only over the shoulder so as not to interfere with the perfect "dangle."
You may also know him from: The time he super-patiently started asking you about the pluses and minuses of your new Asics minimalist sneakers while ... being completely naked.
The Zumba Giggler
How to recognize him: He's white. Like really, really white.
On his iTunes: All remixes of "Funky Vodka," Pitbull and Enrique.
No relationship to: Guy who can really isolate his hips well in Zumba, just as one would in the original sexy Latin dances on which it is based!
But possibly related to: The barbell sniffer, the yoga snorer, the shake-weight farter.
The Yoga Cad
How to recognize him: He'll be holding court with five women after Bikram, explaining his daily meditation practice.
Accessories: All-natural-fiber yoga mat, ponytail elastic, holy-water facial spritz, Tom's of Maine deodorant.
His go-to move: Lunging Proud Cock (called Warrior 2 in yoga parlance).
His other go-to move: "Can I help you square your hips? You're a little off-center."
Bing: Guys at the gym
The Elliptical Scholar
How to recognize him: He's the guy taking a leisurely stroll on an exercise machine with a towel around his neck and a leather-bound copy of “Paradise Lost” propped before him.
How else to recognize him: Converse
All Stars from 1983, lack of sweat.
Bonus fitness accessory: Vintage tartan scarf from Oxbridge.
Motto: Working out is a long read spoiled.
The Steam Room Stretcher
How to recognize him: Are you in the steam room? Is there a guy in there who's making weird groaning sounds? That's him.
Philosophy: No one can see me behind this shroud of steam, so it's a great place to do weird, private stuff!
Related to: The sauna zit-picker, the shower gargler and that guy who has definitely been doing something strange in the handicapped stall for the past half hour.
The Spin Class Ogler
How to recognize him: Find the yoga room, the StairMaster, the stretching mat, the spin class or anywhere else peopled by women in tight pants. Now turn around and find the guy who's watching what these women are doing like he's front row at a strip club.
How to know if you are him: Every once in a while you realize, Oh, they can see me, too!
Motto: No better place to be than behind the last row of treadmills.
Overheard saying: "Check out the talent over in the Nautilus room, dogg!"
Bonus accessory: Half-mast running shorts.
How to recognize him: Kinda fat, a little bit hairy; looks like a garbage man in threadbare workout clothes from the '70s. Can squat 5,970 pounds.
Why you avoid spotting him on the bench press: It seems like you might have to end up doing CPR. Maybe it's the pallid complexion or the cold sweat, but it's not looking healthy.
Accessories: Leather weight-lifting belt, knee brace fashioned from old radiator hose, tiny gym shorts, tube socks.
How to know if he's been in the area: Puddle of un-mopped sweat, scent of raw mackerel.
How to know if you're him: For breakfast you just had six raw eggs and half an Entenmann's cheese Danish.
The Ironic Sweater
How to recognize him: He's the guy in the shaggy hair and giant headphones you probably shouldn't sweat in who seems like he walked in here by accident while looking for a bar with cool vintage arcade games.
Uniform: Concert tee from the '90s, cutoff cords, retro gym shoes from the '80s that he likes to call "trainers."
Bonus accessory: Deep ambivalence about all gym equipment as pertains to actually using it.
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