Today, several of us were working out in a local gym. Nothing fancy, but a nice facility for here.
Something happened today, though, that jolted me into the reality that I am not, in fact, in an American weight room.
During a break, I bought a Gatorade from the front desk. Pretty standard. Opened it without noticing the favor and poured it down my parched gullet.
Bam. . . reality reared its ugly head. Green tea flavored Gatorade. Wow! Not good.
I like green tea. Don’t love it, but definitely like it. I love Gatorade. Put the two together and it is repugnant. Seriously. One slight sip was all I could take. I needed to brush my teeth to get the taste out. Not good.
Then, it was as if my eyes were opened. The weight room here really does have some funny differences compared its counterparts in the US. I pulled out my phone to take some pics so you could see some of the sites on a random weekday in this Asian weight room.
First, the posters on the walls. Weight rooms the world over have motivational posters on the walls. It might even be a requirement for weight rooms. In the States, they are generally Mr. Olympiad winners and/or equivalent meat heads. Here. . . not so much. Here are two examples.
There are several posters with dancing people scattered throughout.
Honestly, most of the time we go to the gym, at least a few men are simply practicing dance moves in the corner in front of mirrors. That is their workout. Guess the posters make sense.
The second poster here is so creepy that its awkward to even walk by it. If I took a picture of this entire poster you would see the depths of the creep factor with this one. Trust me. Seriously weird to have on the wall of a weight room. Definitely not motivational.
During the next rest break from the workout, I walked outside in a sitting area. It is on the roof of the building.
People generally go here to catch their breath. Today I found this guy sitting in a big chair. He was actually taking a “smoke break” during his work out.
This is not unusual, as guys often smoke just outside of the gym. He was just sitting back taking a few drags on his cig in the midst of a workout. Just trying to recover to push forward with the remainder of the time. You can’t see the cigarette in this picture, but it was there.
I then walked down the hall for the bathroom in the gym. Here it is a little below and on the right.
Not the model of cleanliness. Actually, the smell is much more pungent than the picture would lead you to believe. Not exactly a spa at the athletic club. Let’s just say we try to get our business done prior to going to workout.
One of the other things I love about this weight room is that it shares a wall with a massive Internet Café. If you are not familiar with these, they are places where people will blow hours and even days on end playing on-line games such as World of Warcraft.
Massively popular over here. Depressing to see how many people pull all-nighters in places like this locked in digital battles with oarks, goblins, and under lords.
We usually get to the weight room at 7am, only to find the Internet Café filled with gaming warriors that are yet to go home for the evening. I guess things got so intense for this one guy in the picture that he had to pull his shirt off. We often joke that someone has to keep the imaginary gaming world safe from evil while the rest of us sleep!
Finally, below are two of the guys I work out with, Chris Musgrove and Hughes Lowman. Throw in Michael Gregory and you complete the group.
Alright, hope you enjoyed a peak into our fitness situation here. All in all, I am very thankful for both a place and people to work out with here. Definitely makes a naturally stressful environment more livable when you have stuff like this available.
Have a great weekend!