Sunday, January 10, 2016

Shut Up Already!

I love January time in the gym.  I know that for some "regulars" they hate the crowds of the New Years Resolutioners, but for me I love it.  They bring an energy to the gym, they're all so full of hope, even if they don't have the slightest clue how to attain their goals.

That's okay, that's what we're there for, to instruct, mentor and encourage these newbie's to a healthier, fitter version of themselves.

I will say I do enjoy people watching too.  It's amazing how much complete and utter nonsense you'll see and hear.  I was in working out last week, doing some bicep curls and watched a 20-something working on an elliptical machine going like a crazy mad person at a velocity that had she not been wearing a low friction fabric she might have ignited her own pants. Just down from little miss hot pants was another young woman that was "working" on a recumbent bike at maybe 10 RPM.  Later while I was running on a treadmill I watched people stroll and meander on the track that encircles the 2nd floor.  I know that some of those folks were going to go into school or work the next day and share with their colleagues about how their workout had gone and how long they were at the gym.  I'm sorry but if you're walking at a 2 MPH pace holding your phone and talking to someone (not exercising with you) then you shouldn't consider it a workout.

The entire thing reminds me of the YouTube video that's been floating around social media.  It's a fairly long video but well worth the time.

Which brings me to my recent classes.  My studio is a round room; I don't know what fool came up with the idea of a round room but regardless this is what I have to contend with.  The acoustics of a round room are bizarre and I find I hate standing in the middle of the room as you get a lot of weird echos (remember I get off the bike and coach a lot).

Back to the Newb's in class. They all come to class with their friends and find that they have to talk; not realizing that the acoustics make it so that everyone hears their hushed tones.  I'm not concerned about the occasional grunt, or a "Let's do it!" outburst of encouragement from a participant.  It's the long discussions about how they're feeling or doing during or after class.   This week I actually had someone taking pictures and tweeting during class.  
Historically I've imposed the "telepathy rule".  I'll remind everyone that as a courtesy to the class that I'm the only one that should be talking during class, but feel free to carry on any conversation that you like as long as you use mental telepathy.  I then remind people during class "remember mental telepathy."  That usually works.

If I'm coaching an interval session, where it's acceptable to go anaerobic I'll have the class keep adding until they just run out of capacity to pedal and talk at the same time.
This week during a strength ride however, I came up with one for someone that was particularly chatty.  We hit a down hill segment and I used the visual about the wind blowing in your face, and then I told everyone to shut their mouths so they didn't catch a bug.  I even went on a bit enough to tell them how bad the bug might taste.

Aside from the straight forward addressing the chatter, what creative ways have you addressed your Chatty Cathys and Talkative Toms?