I’m well aware that my opinions are tainted by my previous experiences in life. This however does not change them.

While working out today I noticed something unusual (for the Y). An incredibly ripped young guy working out on the free weights. I’ve previously been a member of a large-always-open-meat-market type gym – and guys like this worked out THERE all the time. But at the YMCA it’s more mom-types and older folks. Anyway. I looked down the row of treadmills and saw him just getting off the leg press machine heading to do some bench presses. The second thing I noticed (after the smug look on the guy’s face) was that he’d left four 45 pound plates and a couple smaller ones on the leg press machine. “Jerk” I thought. Then I remembered my pastor’s words from Sunday – something about loving those around us and it being a demonstration of who we are in Christ to do so. (sigh) As I turned my attention back to my treadmill (“how can it only have been 11 minutes?”) I thought to myself “Maybe he’s doing more sets and so he’s not re-stacking his weights yet”.  45 minutes later he’d done several things: Walked up and down (for no apparent reason) the row of treadmills several times, read a magazine (or two) while sitting on the bench press bench, stared at himself in the mirror a while, and done some additional arm exercises. He had NOT re-stacked his weights, nor had he done any more leg presses.  Still attempting to find some “love” for this fellow human and not be incredibly irritated I said to myself “He’s just waiting until the end of his workout, or for someone else to come to the machine before he re-stacks those plates”.
I continued my workout.
About 20 minutes later it was time for me to do my leg presses. His weights were still stacked on it, and he was just a foot away reading his magazine again. I walked up the the far side of the machine and started re-stacking his weights – he looked up from his magazine and saw me doing so – “Ah, I thought. Now he’s going to prove my initial suspicious of his jerkiness wrong and help me get all his weights off this machine” NOPE! He went right back to his reading while I unloaded the machine and then put my petty 25 pound plates on it. I channeled my irritation into my leg presses and they flew by much easier than they normally do. But obviously (since I’m blogging about it) I’m still annoyed by this guy. I mean, come on. What’s the point?

I’ve never found guys who look a certain way to be particularly kind or considerate to their fellow man (or woman) – but I wish these guys wouldn’t continue to prove my prejudice justified. I’m trying to let it go. I’m trying to feel compassion for him (and guys like him). It must be a pretty lonely existence to be so wrapped up in yourself that you can’t see how your actions affect others, but I’m still annoyed. I guess I should just consider that he did me a favor. He forced me to add 4 squats holding a 45 pound plate into my workout today. Lucky me.


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