While I do believe that Planet Fitness is somewhat of a cop-out for the lazy, I also believe that they are on to something with the “Lunk Alarm” concept: people should not go to the gym to show off, they should go to the gym to improve themselves while allowing others to do the same. That being said, I would like to see a gym somewhere in between Planet Fitness and the Marines Bootcamp; a happy medium, if you will.
Working off of the Lunk Alarm concept, I would like to see a small, slightly painful electric shock delivered any time someone does any of the following:
1.) Drops weights from a height greater than one foot. If you’re strong enough to lift it past a foot, you’re strong enough to put it back down that far again. I don’t expect silence, because gyms are a noisy place by nature, but everyone in the gym doesn’t need to be alerted every time you do a dead lift.
2.) Lets plates slam on a machine. Not only is it similar to the attention-seeking-lunkness of dropping free weights, but it’s also damaging to the equipment.
3.) Leaves a piece of equipment out of its proper place. If you can lift the 100 lb dumbbells to get them over to the bench, then you can lift them and get them back to the rack, because I sure as heck can’t when I need to use that bench after you’re done.
4.) Finishes using a piece of equipment, then doesn’t wipe it down. I’m talking to you, men in muscle shirts who leave sweat on the benches from your exposed flesh.
5.) Flexes in the mirror. It’s a gym, not a fashion show.
6.) Snaps a selfie. This is similar to #5, but is mostly done by women. Note: the shock should also be intensified if the selfie-taker is making a duck face.
7.) Spits in the water fountain.
8.) Leaves their sweaty towel on a bench while they go workout on a different machine. Ew.
9.) Makes fun of anyone else for the shape they’re in. The shock should be intensified if done directly to the person.
10.) Loudly discusses sexual conquests. I neither care nor want to know who you slept with last night, and I certainly don’t want to know how.
Something else I would like to see: a variety of offered training styles. Some of us (ahem) respond better to motivation that takes a positive perspective, things like “You’re doing great!” and “Keep it up!”. Others (usually those same people who would set off the shock device) prefer a more, shall we say, rigorous approach to their exercise motivation: “You can do better, you sack of lard!” and “I thought this was a GYM, not a day spa!” and “That’s pathetic!”. The trainers who use these methods should be identified by the color of their shirt: green for the positive people, and red for the drill sergeants. So those of us seeking congratulatory fist bumps can stay far, far away from the trainers who would rather give us congratulatory shoulder punches.
If anyone reading this would be interested in funding such a gym, I would be more than happy to capitalize on these ideas and improve the gym experience of human kind.