Let's talk resolutions. Let's specifically talk about other people talking about resolutions. You know all the capital-R Runners and muscle heads all get together drinking Michelob Ultras and smoking those Stephen Dorff electric cigarettes to shit talk on all the people who flood their gyms for the first couple of weeks of the New Year. You know it burns them up inside. They think the influx is an affront to the workout culture they have carefully cultivated. People making resolutions aren't legitimate gym brethren, they're Pretenders. New Year's is just an excuse to say you did something, anything, to make yourself feel better. Because New Year's is the ultimate Monday for the "I'll start on Monday" crowd.
I can hear it in my own head and it makes almost too much sense. New Year's Resolutions offer a clear starting point, a time to ween yourself from whatever bad habit you're trying to kick—for diet and exercise it's like a good-bye party for indulgence and sloth—and most importantly it gives you a plan. I will do [X] beginning on [day Y]. It's also bullshit; the easiest way to start anything new is to just do it and not give yourself time to think of all the ways it's going to be difficult and shitty because, guess what? It will be difficult and shitty for reasons you can't even imagine. But it's still possible to do things via the New Year's Resolution and if it makes you feel safe and comfortable to it that way, you should totally do it. Trying is always better than the alternative. Which is why these Fitness Types are such monumental assholes.
They will sit there and tell you that they think it's great that people want to take back their lives and get healthy, but these are lies. They are lies told by lying liars who are judging your for not only being fat and ugly but also...for making their gyms crowded? It's a little bit of that, but it's also a little but of the Indie Kid in all of us. Oh, I liked that band before they made it big comes from the exact same hole in your heart as these bandwagon New Years Resolosers are so annoying, crowding the gym for two weeks, making me come up with words like "Resolosers." I'm not very bright, I primarily lift weights, you see.
That is an actual thing I read somewhere, either here or on Twitter, I guess. Resolosers. For a while there, I thought no one cared about us chunky warriors. I thought they had their own shit to think about and focus on, like how to operate a door. Or how to talk with words. But It's become clear, at least during the busy Resolution Season at the gym, that these people are actually obsessed with our presence in their gym. The gym is apparently not neutral territory. It is some vicious West Side Story-style gang warfare scene. The Sharks in one corner, giving the stink eye running in place on ellipticals, the Jets in another, meaningfully dropping loose weights with a thud on the gym mats, also giving the stink eye.
To this, I say, fuck 'em. And the best way to fuck them is to un-fuck you. Keep going to the gym. Keep making them wait to use The Rack or Spanish Donkey every day for as long as you can. If you just can't seem to get on board with the satisfaction of personal gain, get on the spite train. Your body won't care about the motivation, it'll just be thankful you're using it at all.
I wish it didn't have to be all Us vs. Them, but it is. It's the reason I made a Michelob Ultra crack earlier. You know damn well you look at the people drinking a Michelob Ultra and judge the shit out of them. It's because you know that person isn't a real drinker. That person doesn't enjoy the silky smoothness of a Budweiser Light. It's fucking amateur hour at Murphy's Bar And Grille, you might say to your enabling and hammered friend who may or may not be the bartender. I bet he orders a salad, what's this guy's deal? And it's exactly why the gym rats get salty when their turf gets invaded. These chumps aren't real gym-goers, they're a bunch of phonies.
The reason for this is, obviously, insecurity. Virtually every single human action or inaction can be traced back to insecurity. Wars, murder, seeking political office; all of it because human beings are, incredibly, Flanderized sitcom characters. Fat drunks mock the healthy because it's a defense mechanism for being alcoholic slobs. Fitness psychopaths huff and puff and judge the Resolution crowds because they are psychopaths. So both sides passive aggressive each other to death. Let me grunt in peace, you animals, the psychopath's eyes say in the gym, while in the bar the wheezing laughs just want to be left alone, too.
Theoretically, the optimal human lies somewhere in the middle. The physically fit man or woman who can eat, drink and be merry without being an insufferable prick or intolerable drunk should be attainable but, theoretically, communism is a great system. So instead, we just have these two versions of the same psychosis, exercising varying degrees of control over the idiosyncrasies. Some people are able to hide their psychotic rage at the nerve of the fat guy at his gym, or the Michelob drinker at her bar. Others simply don't care to pretend they're lunatics.
So when you make the decision this New Year's, like every New Year's, to change your life know that it's going to piss a whole bunch of people off. You can either use this as an excuse to prove them right, or you can try to hold out as long as you can and really drive them nuts. Even if you make no physical progress and only manage to piss off the meatheads for a couple weeks, it'll be worth it.
Image by Sam Woolley