The gyms across the world are flooded with New Years Resolutioners (“Rezzies”) this week.  Most regulars at the gym roll their eyes when the subject comes up.  Yes, its inconvenient to have a crowded gym.  No, the Ressies dont know gym etiquette and can be a challenge.

Many regulars take it as a challenge to scare off as many Rezzies as possible by being hostile and intimidating, please dont do this.  This month is a great chance for you to give back to the community and help make fitness a part of these Rezzies lives as it has become part of yours.  You regulars are the mentors. I know its frustrating when people do curls in the squat rack.  If you want to do squats, explain to them in a nice way that you would like to work in and that this is the only spot in the gym available to do squats.   Be patient with Rezzies, remember that despite their macho exterior they are very fragile, and self-conscious.  A few kind words can help set someone on a path for lifelong fitness and health.

Remember, we were all beginners once.

The biggest challenge is to find a way to help the Rezzies without deflating their egos.  You have to be very careful about the way you offer advice because I have found that 95% of the time, guys take it as an insult if you offer them advice directly.  Often leading by example is the best way.  If the person next to you on the pulldown bar is thrashing like a swordfish who just swallowed a hook, start some small talk with them.  When you have a bit of rapport, ask them if they felt that in their lats or if they got a good lat pump.  Explain that it might be worth trying using less weight and using slow form because you get a better pump when doing it that way.  Find a way to suggest an alternative without telling them that what they were doing was wrong.  

With that out of the way, your Rezzie stories?

36 thoughts on “Rezzies”

  1. Hey Scooby,

    First off let me state my gratitude towards you for providing free information and a site that is as unbiased as anyone could hope for.
    I’ve been following this site as well as your ideas and belief’s on bodybuilding and life in general and have adopted an active lifestyle as well as strict nutrition and maintained a BF% of no more than 10% for 8 months now(and not slowing down anytime soon!).
    Anyways! I say all this to say that, while I am no English major, I have seen multiple grammatical error’s on this site and would love to contribute to the site by fixing them, or state them so that you can fix them… In hopes to provide better information content to your viewers,

    Thank you in advanced,



  2. or those who work on 3 or more machines at the same time…pfffttt..well thats why i tend to work at home instead and thanks again Scooby for your advices which really help all of us work at home… See ya. Vince.

  3. Leonidas Ventresca

    People are saying how annoying they are, but you guys have to be fair to the newbies. Okay, yeah they might quit but you should still be kind and polite like Scooby said, because we were all there at one point. Have respect is all I can say even if they are annoying.

  4. Here’s a different Point of View: When I was 16 years old, I was startig to hit the gym with a friend of mine. It wasn’t January, but we sure were total beginners and probably as annoying as rezzies. I remember one day, there were those 2 big as funk Pros, bald head, 120+ kg, you know the real deal. When we were finished, we met them again in the locker room. I looked at them and ask them: “What is your secret?” And one of them replied with a smile: “Do it nice and slow!” He wasn’t annoyed at all and he wasn’t preaching, he just wanted to give the best advice possible to a newbie.
    I really loved this advice, Scooby you know why, and to this day, no matter what exercise I do, I do it as slow as possible. I guess thats the spirit of bodybuilding!

  5. Is it frowned upon to use the squat rack for anything other then squats? Rightly or wrongly, I’ve used the squat rack in the past for various other exercises. Examples being, standing military press with a heavier weight (so that you can start and finish with the bar at just below shoulder level). Heavy (100kg) bent over rows. Heavy shrugs. All these uses are mainly to increase user safety and injury prevention. What are your thoughts on this use of the squat rack?

    1. I agree – they aren’t “squat racks” in my opinion. Why else would
      most of them have adjustable catch bars, racks, and even pull-up
      handles. They are used by gyms now-a-days to do exactly what you said, increase safety, on a variety of lifts.

  6. My neighbours are in their mid 40’s and decided to buy nearly $1000 in gym equipment for their basement on New years day. I’ve built a very practical scoobified gym in my unfinished basement over the last 3 years (hockey sticks screwed to ceiling for pull-ups, most exercises done on the floor with a towel and pillows, and truck tie downs hanging from the ceiling). I tried to discourage them from buying all that crap (they know better, I guess), but I also want to be delicate with them because I don’t want to deflate their enthusiasm. Should I just leave them alone?

    1. If they have money to burn, nothing wrong with it. If you want to help them I would hold off the advice now but ask them on a regular basis how their training is going and be ready with helpful suggestions should the occasion present itself.

  7. I usually try to be helpful. As you mentioned, people can’t get out of the ‘Rezzie’ mindset, or learn better habits, if nobody mentors them. I will usually ask to work in with a decent newbie (personality wise) & then I’ll ask them about what they’re doing. As long as you explain in a less offensive way, showing a genuine concern for their health, people actually listen. Most of the time people thank me and whenever they come in, they come over and talk, usually to ask for tips. :)

  8. What I really hate is the weight-rack blockers. Those people who pick up the 25’s from the rack move back 6″, then proceed to do 200 reps of curls blocking all access to all the dumbbells in the process. Aaargh!

    1. Or the ones that gather 4 or 5 different sets of dumbells and arrange them on the floor around their bench leaving a gap in the weight rack from around 25’s upto 45’s Grrrrrrr!!

  9. Totally agree here that the skill in helping rezzies lies in being able to offer advice without sounding condescending or overly critical. Noone, however huge or strong, should ever forget that they too were a beginner once, and I think almost everybody has benefitted from advice from more experienced people in the gym at some point in their lifting career.

  10. “I know its frustrating when people do curls in the squat rack”

    Soo true, but not only Rezzies do that; regulars also. Considering there is just one squat rack in the entire gym, its frustrating indeed.

  11. It can be quite annoying with the “Rezzies” as you call them. From my experience the best times to go to the gym during Jan & Feb is the weekend, Tuesdays and Fridays. Most Rezzies don’t want to give up any of their weekend to go to the gym so they all tend to go on a Monday. They then have Tuesday off and come again in force on a Wednesday. The best time to visit the gym all year round is still Friday night. Only the dedicated train on a friday night :o)

    1. Yeah, usually the end of the week (Fridays and weekends) is the best time to go to the gym because there aren’t so much people. On other days of the week I try to go to the gym before afternoon (if possible) because at that time the gym isn’t so crowded.

      At this time of year it’s quite a nightmare to go to the gym on Monday afternoon because there are the rezzies and most of the regulars. Gym is so crowded that it’s almost impossible to get a decent workout.

      Most of the rezzies quit in March and April so then the gym is again peaceful and nice place to train. :)

  12. My biggest problem with Rezzies is that I spend 45 minutes of what turns out to be a 90 minute workout putting their freakin’ stack away. Having to wipe up their man-juice, listening to them grunt like they’re passing a kidney stone, and watching them leer like someone who’s never seen a woman before is just icing on the cake.

    This is why I work out at home until March.

    1. This is part fault of the gym management and part fault of the members for allowing it. Leaving a bench dripping with sweat is NOT ok nor is leaving weights on the machines. If I was a gym owner I would strictly enforce the “rack your weights” policy.

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