Gym Etiquette 101: What Not to Do


This #MySignatureMove shop has been compensated by #CollectiveBias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.  

As my readers should know by now, the last year and a half has been very transformative for me and my husband. We went from only really being active while playing with the kids to working out 3 – 4 times a week at the gym. This has been life-changing for both of us! Being new to the gym, however, I didn’t really know all the ‘rules’. There are the obvious do’s and don’t’s, but there are a lot of unstated rules gym-goers must learn implicitly through the responses of those around them. I polled my friends on Facebook to find out what gym-related behaviors drive them absolutely mad to create this mini-course titled “Gym Etiquette 101: What Not to Do”.

Gym Etiquette 101

1. Blocking the mirror: I gotta admit, this is my #1 pet peeve at the gym. You grab your weights, find a good spot to watch yourself, get all ready to go, and someone jumps right in front of you. Seriously? Because there’s no other place to exercise except for right in front of me? I really have to be aware of my form because of my naturally low-tone and my body’s inclination to compensate poorly for weak areas. Please, don’t jump in front of my mirror space.

blocking mirrors

2. Not returning weights: The gym can be a tight space when lots of people are working out together. I take group classes at Challenge Fitness, which can sometimes attract a large crowd. We move around quickly, so it’s really important that people don’t leave their belongings laying around for others to trip over. This is especially true of weights. When you’re done with the weights, please re-stack them.

restack weights

3. Taking too many selfies: Hi, my name is Carrie and I love to take photos of pretty much everything, including myself. But you know what? When I work out, my phone stays in my purse in a locker. Post work-out selfies, pictures of your protein shake, your running shoes, whatever. Those are all fine — after the work-out.

Taking selfies

4. Playing on your phone while on equipment: To tie into the last one, it’s not cool to monopolize the gym equipment, especially if you’re just chilling there on your phone, not using the equipment. If you want to mess around on your phone, go sit on a bench somewhere.

playing on phones

5. Leaving equipment sweaty: I have this crazy problem when I work out – I rarely ever sweat. It can be the most challenging cardio workout, the most strenuous ab workout, in the blazing sun, and it really doesn’t matter. I still sweat minimally. And even though I’m not generally grossed out by much of anything… people, if you sweat a whole bunch, please just wipe off the equipment. I’m not asking for you to get out the sanitizer to do so. A quick swipe of your gym towel is just fine.

sweaty equipments

6. Singing at the gym: The gym isn’t your personal opera house or recording studio. You want to sing? Take a shower…at home. Otherwise, buddy, keep it in your head. Nobody wants to hear you.

singing at gym

7. Talking loudly on the phone: Apparently a lot of inappropriate gym behaviors involve cell phones. Gym time is un-plug time for me. Sorry, I don’t really care who you are, if you’re not at the gym with me, I don’t want to talk to you right then. The gym is my “me” time. It’s the time to focus on my health and strength. If you choose to make phone calls at the gym, please do so quietly. Nobody wants the distraction.

talking loudly

8. Gawking and wolf whistles: Unbeknownst to me, the gym is not a place to check people out. (Who knew?) When I polled my friends, this seemed to be a real issue. They want to go to the gym to work out, not to be checked out. Bring your whistles and stares to the club, not the gym. A special “shout out” to my trainer Amy for allowing us to borrow her behind for this demonstration.

checking people out

9. Smelling nasty: There are a few problems with this one. It’s apparent that some people just do not purchase deodorant. Or if they do, they forget to actually apply it before heading to the gym. But there’s the other extreme – people who put on gobs of cologne to hit the gym. Sweat + tons of cologne = bad combination. Apply deodorant, but don’t go overboard with your cologne, lotions, etc.

bad odors

10. Going to work without washing up after the gym: This is quite possibly the nastiest post-gym behavior. It’s one thing to leave the gym, go home, and lay around your house. But if you exercise before work, please either shower at the gym or quickly head home and take a shower. Be respectful of the people who have to interact with you the remainder of the day.

Irish Spring for men

So if your hot man is looking for a truly invigorating post-gym shower experience, check out the new line of Irish Spring Signature for Men products. And now, purchase one of the new Irish Spring Signature products and get $5 off a VUDU purchase! Take a picture of your receipt and then click HERE to upload your receipt. Next step, enjoy watching!

Irish Spring at Walmart

The new Irish Spring Signature for Men products can be found down the soap aisle in the beauty section in Walmart. Try the body washes and soap 3-packs. And make sure that when your man heads to the gym, he learns to follow all the rules!

About Carrie Wells, Ed.D.

Dr. Carrie Wells is a college instructor, blogger, wife, and work-at-home mother to two children, Lydia {age 8} and Bryce {age 6}. Carrie earned her doctorate in Special Education in 2008. After becoming a mother in 2009, Carrie began blogging as Huppie Mama to share her passions for cooking, crafting, beautifying, and her family. In 2016, she rebranded as Our Potluck Family, and her husband Richard became a regular contributor.

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3 Responses to Gym Etiquette 101: What Not to Do

  1. mcbrock says:

    I always enjoy your posts….but I love, love these pics! Lol

  2. Summer Davis says:

    YES to ALL of these behaviors! I can’t even choose a favorite because they’re all so good. Having to work out next to someone who stinks is particularly heinous so I’m glad Irish Spring can help on all fronts. #client

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