T Nation

Good Things in Your Gym

It’s fun to rag on the strange/weird/mind-boggling things we see in our gyms, but I thought we could balance it with the cool things we’ve seen or experienced.

Last night was definitely a case in point. I personally was having a crappy lifting day. Nearly every time my friend and I would weight the bar to do an exercise, I’d do my damnedest, but in the end we’d have to take some of the plates off, 'cause I just couldn’t handle the weight with anything near good form.

Even just the bar felt heavy. Despite that, it was a fairly cool night.

My gym is pretty definitely metro and sometimes it seems like the all cardio or machines channel. But, last night I met a guy who knew what the jump box was for - I don’t use it, cause that would be a one-way ticket to a knee-capping, but it impresses me that others do.

Then, there was a trainer who had a client doing farmers’ walks with those barrels with handles. I suitcase deadlifted one of them at the weight he had on it and I definitely thought carrying both of them would be pretty intense for a newbie. I didn’t think trainers in a commercial gym would ever have someone doing that.

I also saw another trainer having someone do dragon flags, which definitely surprised me.

And, finally, and best of all, a guy came up to us as I was finishing SLDLs (with a not very impressive weight, but the best I could do at the time) to comment to my friend and me how great it was to see anyone doing serious lifting and especially to see women doing it. Going by the arms on him, he’d put in more than a few hours in the gym himself.

In retrospect I think he may have been coming over to check out my friend (who is married), but still it’s nice to have hard work recognized.

I also realized something that’s probably useful to remember - having headphones on doesn’t make you invisible. As I was getting set to do my first set of push presses, there was a guy who’d finished whatever cable set he was working on. He the proceeded to stare directly at me from about 6’ from the platform.

At first, I was like “what the hell” esp. since I wasn’t using the sort of weight that someone might be like, “oh, I want to see this.” But, then I realized he was just zoning between sets and probably didn’t even realize he was staring at me. I was pretty sure he wasn’t going to ask if he could work in, so, I just ignored him.

There’s one area of my regular gym that I really like for active recovery days. In this little 10’X 10’ spot there’s a really nice dual pulley station w/ pullup attachments, dip station, adjustable bench, lat pulldown machine, and a nice array of dumbbells.

Plus, right nearby there’s a nice long “runway” to do walking lunges/farmer walks/etc. On these off days, I can just use this stuff and not have to bother myself with the shenanegans going on in the free weight area.

That really is the only thing that’s somewhat cool at my gym. :frowning:

I’ve seen a guy doing 600+ lb squats and deadlifts in my gym.

There are two or three competitive women who workout regularly and it’s a good role model for women in the gym.

A couple of trainers in the gym are fairly on top of things, using plyos, bands and other techniques as well as the usual gym fare.

I don’t know if it’s a good thing but they just put in a whole bunch of new cardio equipment – I’m thinking it’s preparatory for a big membership drive for the new year.

As a “personal trainer”, I have my clients (male and female, old and young) do Farmers, tire flips, sandbag carries, sled drags, keg c&p etc.

In fact, I was practically forced out of Gold’s (I opened my own place) for dragging my sled in the parking lot even though the members all seemed to be interested in it.

It’s nice to hear it’s catching on here and there.

I actually saw 2 women doing squats Thursday. I was so impressed I had to comment. I’ve never seen any female but me do squats.

She looked at me like I was retarded, but whatever. lol!!

The owner of my gym has squatted 1000 lbs. His total, a state record, is 2330 lbs.

So the powerlifters have their own room, with some fancy powerlifting schtuff like belts, chains, some crazy squat rack with hooks that come out to grab the bar, and a little beat-up foot stool to box squat to… Actually, the hip belt squat machine, glute ham raise and chest supported t-bar row are in there too. I’ve also gone in there to operate the hooks on that crazy squat rack thing for a guy squatting 2 reps of 400-some to the stool.

And the best music typically filters out from there (Disturbed, Marilyn Manson, Rammstein, etc.), into the regular weight area. Heavy bag hangs between the two areas. We’ve got dumbbells up to 190 lbs. Every machine you can imagine, including a standing t-bar row and the hammer strength four-way neck machine, two pec decks and a bunch that I’ve never used.

Two types of grippers and two wrist rollers. Two cable-crossovers. EZ-curl bars preset with weights up to 150. Weighted dip belts, of course. All types of bars, including two trap bars and that funky thing Dave Tate used in that picture, with the rotating handles. There’s even a long wooden dowel for doing behind-the-back shoulder hyperextensions with. And whatever else someone drags in.

Cardio room w/ cable tv, dry sauna, women’s only workout area (darn). All that for only $30/month.

Nothing is lacking. My gym fucking rules!

I hate you all…

[quote]Kailash wrote:
some crazy squat rack with hooks that come out to grab the bar,[/quote]

It’s called a “monolift”.

  • An older guy(55~) who looked just average build came in and loaded 405 on the bench and hit it out FOR REPS. Then increased the wieght unitl about 600lbs.

  • An middle aged married couple who are both freaky strong, Iv seen the wife push 2x 100lb Db presses. Both very very nice people .

  • Alot of Canadian and Albertan competitors (BBing)train in my gym and I have never met one that hasnt been one of the nicest people there.

-My training partner, odler than me , bigger than me and amazingly strong . I learn something new everyime I train with him . He gives me motavation and always has a new excersise to try.

[quote]Kailash wrote:
The owner of my gym has squatted 1000 lbs. His total, a state record, is 2330 lbs.

So the powerlifters have their own room, with some fancy powerlifting schtuff like belts, chains, some crazy squat rack with hooks that come out to grab the bar, and a little beat-up foot stool to box squat to… Actually, the hip belt squat machine, glute ham raise and chest supported t-bar row are in there too. I’ve also gone in there to operate the hooks on that crazy squat rack thing for a guy squatting 2 reps of 400-some to the stool.

And the best music typically filters out from there (Disturbed, Marilyn Manson, Rammstein, etc.), into the regular weight area. Heavy bag hangs between the two areas. We’ve got dumbbells up to 190 lbs. Every machine you can imagine, including a standing t-bar row and the hammer strength four-way neck machine, two pec decks and a bunch that I’ve never used.

Two types of grippers and two wrist rollers. Two cable-crossovers. EZ-curl bars preset with weights up to 150. Weighted dip belts, of course. All types of bars, including two trap bars and that funky thing Dave Tate used in that picture, with the rotating handles. There’s even a long wooden dowel for doing behind-the-back shoulder hyperextensions with. And whatever else someone drags in.

Cardio room w/ cable tv, dry sauna, women’s only workout area (darn). All that for only $30/month.

Nothing is lacking. My gym fucking rules![/quote]

What gym do you go to?

I work at a university and my 39-year old colleague just did her first chin up plus several assisted ones. She’s only been training 6-months and had never attempted them before.

She was getting a few stares.

[quote]Digital Chainsaw wrote:
Kailash wrote:
some crazy squat rack with hooks that come out to grab the bar,

It’s called a “monolift”.[/quote]

Yeah, that’s it exactly. Thanks!

[quote]StevenF wrote:
What gym do you go to?[/quote]

Strength Beyond, in Kalamazoo

[quote]bboybean wrote:

  • An older guy(55~) who looked just average build came in and loaded 405 on the bench and hit it out FOR REPS. Then increased the wieght unitl about 600lbs.
    [/quote]

wow, that’s almost up their with Bill Kazmier in his prime. Does this ~55 year old have a name?

My gym is awesome. It’s owned and operated by an ex-competitive powerlifter.

It has a deadlift platform, several power racks, a monolift, competition bench (plus several more benches), specialty bars like a safty-squat bar, dumbells up to 130 lbs, a shitload of machines for people into that stuff, a bunch of cardio equipment for that crowd, and a chalk bowl for all members to use.

Rock music is played in the gym unlike the elevator-type easy listening music that’s played in most ‘fitness’ centers (who the hell can get a good workout in listening to Nora Jones?).

And best of all, people complaining about hearing the occasional grunt would have their money refunded to them and be asked to not come back.

The other day I gave my strength coach a liftoff for his bench press day. He benched something like 365 at a bodyweight of around 160. That inspired me to work a little harder.

[quote]
StevenF wrote:
What gym do you go to?

Strength Beyond, in Kalamazoo[/quote]

Howdy neighbor. I used to go to that gym myself. This man speaks the truth. One of the best gyms in the country to get freaky strong at it seems. It’s kinda like pics I’ve seen of Westside but with normal people mixed in, hahaha. At any time you can see guys setting new PR’s, and it’s an awesome gym. Not kidding either- the owner Mike is a beast.

I train somewhere else now because after all the other gyms closed it got super busy when they took all the new clients in. Has it settled down any since? I’ve still got another 8 months on my other gym membership, but I was just curious. I like my new gym, but I do miss the energy of Strength Beyond. It was a ton of fun.

Kubo

[quote]Kailash wrote:
The owner of my gym has squatted 1000 lbs. His total, a state record, is 2330 lbs.

So the powerlifters have their own room, with some fancy powerlifting schtuff like belts, chains, some crazy squat rack with hooks that come out to grab the bar, and a little beat-up foot stool to box squat to… Actually, the hip belt squat machine, glute ham raise and chest supported t-bar row are in there too. I’ve also gone in there to operate the hooks on that crazy squat rack thing for a guy squatting 2 reps of 400-some to the stool.

And the best music typically filters out from there (Disturbed, Marilyn Manson, Rammstein, etc.), into the regular weight area. Heavy bag hangs between the two areas. We’ve got dumbbells up to 190 lbs. Every machine you can imagine, including a standing t-bar row and the hammer strength four-way neck machine, two pec decks and a bunch that I’ve never used.

Two types of grippers and two wrist rollers. Two cable-crossovers. EZ-curl bars preset with weights up to 150. Weighted dip belts, of course. All types of bars, including two trap bars and that funky thing Dave Tate used in that picture, with the rotating handles. There’s even a long wooden dowel for doing behind-the-back shoulder hyperextensions with. And whatever else someone drags in.

Cardio room w/ cable tv, dry sauna, women’s only workout area (darn). All that for only $30/month.

Nothing is lacking. My gym fucking rules![/quote]

i guess im in the wrong place bro ! training at ballys really suck compared to what you got !

I have one squat rack. Just one, mind you. But no one else seems to know what it’s for so I am Lord and Master of it. I never have to wait to use it. There are also maybe a double handful of people in the gym at once. Maybe two or three besides myself with the free weights. I rarely, if ever, have to wait.

Best part of my gym has nothing to do with my gym: as a teacher, I get in there by 3:15 at the latest and it’s totally empty.

Just me and the cleaning lady.

Is nice!

[quote]storeydp wrote:
bboybean wrote:

  • An older guy(55~) who looked just average build came in and loaded 405 on the bench and hit it out FOR REPS. Then increased the wieght unitl about 600lbs.

wow, that’s almost up their with Bill Kazmier in his prime. Does this ~55 year old have a name?[/quote]

No idea, he came in … didnt talk to anyone … pressed heavy then left. I suddenly felt very very weak after watching him.