To the clueless gerbil next to me:

I go to my gym to primarily lift weights. I like the gym because it has much heavier weights and more varieties of equipment than my small home set up. I tend to do my cardio at home either on my spin bike or in the living room in the form of aerobics/kickboxing or tabata protocols. To mix things up sometimes I will do tabata style sprints on the treadmill at the gym.

So I was at the gym the other day and had just done a good full-body strength session and was feeling good so I decided I could handle one tabata worth of sprints on the treadmill to finish up. So I hop on and get my gymboss all set while at an easy walk to begin with. At this point the lady on the treadmill next to me was pretty much ignoring my existence doing her own thing. (Which is totally fine. I like to focus on my workouts too. I don’t require a hello and good-bye from every person I happen to walk by at the gym.) Then I start my timer and begin increasing the speed. I start my first sprint and when the timer goes off I end my sprint (any sprinters out there know how that works). The lady next to me sniggers and gives me a look I would describe as derisive. I was a bit confused. What was this lady’s problem? On my next sprint and rest she was still giving me the sideways look. Did she think I was trying to run continously on the treadmill and failing at it? I was starting to get angry with this lady for being so rude.

On my next rest period I took a quick peak at the stats on her treadmill. They indicated she was doing long steady state cardio at a low/moderate intensity. So it occurred to me that maybe this women was not aware of the HIIT style of training. There is a lot of dated information pertaining to exercise and fitness that is still being peddled around out there and a lot of this dated information is marketed specifically to women (or rather the people society expects women to be) like the myth that women shouldn’t lift heavy and shit like that. After I recovered from my tabata I opened up a conversation with the lady and explained what I was doing and pointed out some of the benefits of HIIT training. I was right, she really had had no idea what I was doing. She expressed some interest in what I was saying and seemed to like the idea of swapping the long duration low/moderate intensity workout for the short duration high intensity workout. I told myself it was good thing that I turned this into a learning opportunity rather than a bitchfest between two strangers at the gym.  It was a happy ending in that regard except . . . .

. . .all I really truly wanted to do in response to the rude ignorant cardo bunny was to tell her to go fuck herself and stomp off.

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