Acts of Gym Kindness
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
So since the ballerina comment from my last blog post, things haven't necessarily gotten much better. I've still been feeling remarkably unwelcome in "boys club". In fact, when doing an upper body circuit last week, some guy came over and took the bench I was using. I had just stood up from it, was doing curls with my legs still touching the bench and the rest of my weights all around it, and he sat down and took it without even asking me. I was sad.
We've changed the time when we visit, going a little later when it's less crowded. All that seems to have done is make our evenings very very busy. I can accept that.
I'll admit that I'm not enjoying the gym like I used to but I still love working hard and I've still been pushing myself hard.
And I look for ways to be happy at the gym. Like last night.
Last night I needed to do lat pulldowns but the wrong bar was attached to the cable machine. I knew that I couldn't attach the long lat pull bar I needed without help. It's too unwieldy while also holding the cable down. I scanned the room to see who I could ask. There were a lot of very large men around, most of whom had headphones on. And then I spotted him.
I've seen this young chap before. He comes to the gym with his dad. He's an adorable little weed, maybe twelve. Glasses. Sweetest face. His father was using a machine and he was standing next to him looking a little lost, waiting for his dad to finish. This was my guy.
I went up to him and touched his arm and said, "Hey, do you think you could help me out for a second?" His eyes got a little round, like maybe he was afraid I was going to ask for help with a weight he couldn't manage. But he nodded and said yes. I walked back to the cable machine and said, "Can you hold this down for me so I can attach the bar to it?" He smiled and nodded and held it down while I clipped the bar on to it. I smiled at him and said, "I can never do this by myself and I always look like such an idiot." He chuckled. It was adorable. I said, "Thanks man!" and he walked away.
But he was smiling.
It's nothing. It didn't mean much. But we both got a smile out of it. And that is all that matters.