Scenario: You're at the gym, working your guts out on an elliptical and you notice someone wander out of the change rooms and hop on a treadmill. They spend five minutes walking at a slight incline, then move to the mats and spend another ten minutes stretching and mucking around with a foam roller.
You finish up your cardio workout and move over to the weights area and you see that this person has pulled out a resistance tube and is doing a couple of really basic exercises with it. You're getting sweaty in the squat rack, and when you take a break between sets a few minutes later, you see that they've put the band away. They do a few more stretches and then head back to the change room. You see them come out a minute later with their bag and leave the gym.
Pfft. What a waste of time. Twenty five minutes of walking, stretching and stuffing around with a band. Who'd pay for a gym membership, just to do that? You get back to your hard-core training (because you're a total badass) and forget about them...
Have you ever seen somebody at your gym do something like that and silently judged them? Hmm.
That person was me yesterday morning. I had exactly twenty-five minutes to spare between the school drop-off and my appointment for my cortisone injection. I could have gone home, sculled an extra coffee, then driven back to the radiology place, which happens to be in the same complex as my gym. Or I could have stopped at the shopping centre and had a coffee there, browsed the Spring fashions and then driven the 1km or so to my appointment. But I chose to use the time to squeeze in a quick workout instead.
I jumped on a treadmill to get my sore legs moving (Ouchies! Thursday's training had left me with screaming hamstrings, quads and glutes) and warm up a bit before doing the exercise that was my highest priority - my shoulder rehab. I added some extra stretching because I was feeling particularly stiff. The exercises I'm doing are not impressive - in fact to the untrained eye, it may look as though I'm not doing anything at all with a couple of them. But they are essential and they are having the desired effect.
I was having a little laugh to myself as I imagined what I looked like, and what that chick with the amazing glutes over in the squat rack was thinking...
There have been times in the past where I've noticed someone doing what appeared to be a no-effort workout and made snap judgements about them. But if there's one thing that injury teaches you, it's that you can't judge a book by its cover. Or a gym-goer by their workout. Whatever.
Now when I see somebody who looks capable enough doing an "easy" workout, I wonder what their story is - Are they recovering from an illness? Do they have an injury? Did they do a massive workout yesterday and today they're doing a programmed recovery day?
The moral of this story: If we don't know a person's story, we shouldn't presume to judge them.
Are you sometimes guilty of being a judgey-judger?
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