There is nothing better than a great solo workout. I really can’t think of something I enjoy more alone than zoning out and breaking a sweat. It’s not that I hate working out with others, but I generally find that my patience for humanity is much lower if you decide to text after every circuit, or pause to dramatically talk about how much you are sweating. I guess what I mean is that your workout buddy holds a very special position in my personal life. This person sees you at your least glamorous, most smelly, and absorbs the often times obscene site of your ‘just did 100 burpees face.’ Clearly a great workout buddy is no ordinary pal. This is why when I was in the situation to workout with two dudes I wasn’t sure how this would play out. I knew all of the risk factors of hitting the gym with your girlfriend. The texting, the talking, the unwelcome sweating, endless butt routines, and the ever common ‘lets just go get food instead’ suggestion. Hitting it with some dudes was a different story. Would I even be able to keep up? I could already hear the ridicule of whipping out some 5lb weights. How would we all get a good workout from the same moves? Oh gosh not to mention the ‘gasping for air’ face.
Below is the best example I could find of this face…
After many workouts both alone and with amazing friends, I figured trying it out with the guys would at least be a guaranteed sweat session. Whether they were workout buddy material was still left to establish.
We all met up a tiny garage gym. I could hear the country music humming as I walked up, oh joy sob songs of women and tractors to get us motivated. Maybe a little judgmental I know, but hey when you normally get moving to Pandora’s power workout play list Garth Brooks is downright inappropriate. I walk in to grunting, pull-ups, and a box fan to circulate the air sweat…yikes, no more yoga mats and Lululemon for me.
So here is why I decided doing it with dudes is actually a great idea:
1. My kind of man talk: so maybe I didn’t have much to contribute here. I knew the man talk was coming. There was primarily talk of protein and working out, how huge your lats will look, the right form…yada…yada. Which makes a heck of a lot more sense than what goes on during a girl geared sweat session. No who has the cutest sports bra on, where has the best Pilates, how your butt got so perky, did the boyfriend really say that, why my yoga pants are better than yours…etc. While I am equally as guilty of LOVING to discuss these riveting topics (really I do…everyone wants a perky butt), the conversation was focused to the task at hand which made the workout feel more rewarding. I felt the focus of a solo session. Working out with your best friend demands a different mindset and is almost more challenging. You have to mentally be able to run and jump around while telling the dramatic story of what happened Saturday night, which in my opinion can be equally as hard as trying to juggle while standing on your head. Less talk=more effort elsewhere.
2. Sweat…everywhere: The group setting made for an extremely competitive motivation. I sure as hell wasn’t trying to be the slowest in the room which resulted in an extremely manly amount of sweating. Imagine droplets flying all over the room, the floor slippery with body stains (it sounds more gruesome than it actually was). There was no shame about the infamous swamp ass, or taking your drenched shirt to your dripping wet face, it was more a badge of honor…as dirty as that sounds. As someone who appreciates a good sweat it was a highly successful experience.
3. No mirror gazing: Apparently in garage gyms there are no fancy mirrors to adore how ripped your abs look after crunches on the Swiss ball. Putting the vanity aside was also a welcomed change. After many instances of seeing the meat head man flex after a round of bicep curls at the gym I was fully prepared for the gun show. Luckily these dudes kept moving too much to stop and stare.
4. Okay fine…let’s do push ups: Knew this was coming. I really did have to resist my feminine urge to turn every move into some type of squat. It’s like all of these Jillian Michaels flicks have conditioned women to this booty focused mentality. I really liked the challenge of even considering focusing on my arms. These little toothpicks are easily the most forgotten zone due to my having zero upper body strength. I would hang upside down from a pull up bar and do crunches before I attempt any sort of actual pull up. While we didn’t do an intense upper body routine, I woke up the next morning feeling like my back had cemented over night. Who knew after avoiding upper body strength for so long those muscles even still existed…I’ll take it!!
5. No bootys or bikinis here: Brazilian booty, bikini body (insert frilly workout series here)…instead of the girl power look good embellishments, our moves were basic and without fabulous adjectives to make them sound less miserable. Basic squat with weight and lunges did not need to be translated, what you see is what you get with dudes in the garage gym. The simplicity of the moves not only allowed for everyone to know what was going on, but isolated the specific regions that were being worked. It took out the forced Zumba fun that makes me cringe at the thought of shimmying for fitness.
|The two dudes themselves|
Possibly the highlight of doing circuits with these workout dudes was when they compromised to let me change the music selection. Literally Jamey Johnson “Lead Me Home” was playing…wait what did you say? Sorry I passed out mid squat. We experimented with Beyonce radio which needless to say is a classic. Whether they admit it or not I knew it was a hit.
Contrary to my anticipation these dudes were excellent workout buddies. Really I just enjoyed the chance to change it up a little bit. The sweating, push-ups, and bikini-less focused bodies proved to be an awesome workout. Next time I plan to suggest more workout jam classics…maybe Rhianna Radio? I know baby steps…