Women don’t go to the gym to socialize

Apparently I’m unfriendly.

It has been brought to my attention that I am less than friendly at the gym. I don’t stop and chat, wave, or drop my workout to listen to people talk on and on. I tend to give a slight wave if eye contact is made, otherwise I am going about my business. If I need something that someone seems to be done with but I am not sure I will ask about it but I don’t ask about their day, introduce myself or talk about anything else.

  • The comment about my unfriendliness was made by a man. 

The other women in the weight area seem to be just as ‘unfriendly’ as I apparently am. We are there to do work, heft some iron and get on with our day. Even in the change room we are hurrying to shower, get our hair done and get our makeup on to get to the office.

Hairdryers keep conversation down and focus high.

side trackedPhoto

Many men in the morning stop and chat with each other and do more meandering than training which is fine for them. There is a place for chatting and meandering in your day, but for me it is not in the gym at 6:30 am when I have to finish by 7:45 so I can leave by 8:20 to be on time for my 9:00 appointment.

Some rationale for my ‘rude’ behavior.

  • Gym time is ‘me time’. I train because, well, I love it.
  • Being friendly to a meandering gym guy  gives him permission to talk to you while you’re doing decline sit-ups, which is just awkward and tends to make you nauseous after about the 8th sit-up.
  • I only have a small window of time to get my training in.
  • Having them park themselves next to you on a treadmill and talk to you while you’re doing HIIT sprints is frustrating and talking during the 15 second rest period is pretty much impossible.
  • Warming up more than once because you stopped training to talk is a waste of time. Time I just don’t have.
  • Taking out my earbuds has resulted in more ‘coaching and help’ from men who know nothing about training than I want to experience in a lifetime.

I have been friendly in the past, but it seems to do more harm than good for my workout. I suppose I will have to embrace being seen as cold and heartless to keep my workout intact.

  • Maybe the gym is a social outlet for men and a task for women?

Is it actually rude to keep to yourself at the gym? I want your opinion!

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  1. totally not rude at all!!!!!!
    im the same way. most of the time im all business in the gym. ill occasionally nod my head and wave,sometimes someone will ask questions about workouts and nutrition or shows but a majority of the time,my head is down,hat pulled low,shoulder to wheel and I push along…..
    i don’t have time to sit around and shoot the s***. !
    and while at my gym there are a lot of females who meander, guys are just as bad if not worse .. actually the guys are more the gossipers,and the gals are the meanders . usually the girls will group together and act like they are working out so they can either just talk or gawk at the guys-the guys will do an exercise,sit on the bench forever and talk about girls or girl problems or who did what or who over the weekend. but there are the “serious ones”,and can easily be spotted by their said “rude behavior”,lol!!!

    • Serious and intense aren’t bad, just some people don’t understand it at all I suppose. 😛
      In the morning, the women that are there are all trying to get to work or get back home before their husband goes to work so they can be with the kids. It isn’t social hour so I guess that is why I was severely annoyed by the comment. I mean, seriously!

  2. No! No! No! Absolutely not. This idea that women are expected to be nice and chatty JUST BECAUSE A MAN IS TALKING TO THEM is complete and utter nonsense. You’re in charge of you and that includes when you chat, when you smile and when you’re “nice”. Keep hefting that weight, and if they get too close – chuck a dumbbell at them, that should help them get the hint.

    • I just pictured me hucking a 20 lb dumbbell and then sweetly saying, ‘Oh..you didn’t want one? Sorry. I had my headphones in, I thought you wanted me to toss this your way. Sorry!’ hah!

  3. THANK GOD I own my own studio and this is a non-issue for me. When I do find myself in a public gym though, I stare at the ground, never make eye contact with anyone, keep my headphones in (I even do this if I don’t have a listening device), and if anyone speaks to me, I know just enough Hebrew to sound like I don’t speak English.

    The key is I plan…

    • Darn. I only know Spanish…too commonplace. I suppose I could just say, ‘No English’ and shake my head. Hmmm…this could work for when I travel. 🙂

  4. Hmm? Is this really a guy thing?

    I’m no where close to the level of fitness as you or your readers and this makes it even worse when I am at the gym because people love to talk to fat people at the gym. No one talks to the slim women who are toned from head to toe. Friends and acquaintances are thee worst for this.

    This is why I intentionally chose a gym that was not in my neighbourhood and one where no one that I knew would be there to chat with me.
    I find that women love to chat while exercising. I, as a fat girl, can’t talk and exercise. I”m usually half blind from the sweat dripping into my eyes and I am breathing so heavy that I am unable to carry on a conversation. This would be a safety hazard for me.

    Male or female, one must put on the face that says, “I see you, but don’t talk to me. I got work to do!”

    • Lady! It has nothing to do with your size that you can’t chat and train. You’re kicking butt and that ALWAYS makes it impossible to talk and train. Keep the work HIGH and you will always have that problem and it is a great problem to have. Awesome.

  5. So true. I too, train at 5:30 am, I am there to work hard in my allotted time and get out. I’ve been told, “We really thought you were a B the first two years you were here.” A small group of us have gone out socially and they’ve since discovered I’m not a B, just serious in the gym. Oh, thanks. I’m not up at 4:45 to chat, I’m there to work and get on with my day. I believe it shows in the physique changes I have experienced and others have not. 🙂
    Thank you, once again. You rock.

  6. Nope, not rude at all! Gym Time is not Social Hour; it’s time to work! That’s not to say it’s not enjoyable; but it’s definitely not the time to have a conversation about the new iphone or who saw who at the grocery store last night!

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