I hate the fitness industry. Hate is a strong word and I’ve used it correctly here. There are few things I truly hate – The Amarr, and the fitness industry. Have I mentioned how much I hate the fitness industry?
I had just finished another grueling workout and was leaving the free weights area to head to the showers. I felt satisfied with my performance, though there was always room to improve – more weights, more intensity, less rest – getting stronger, faster, better was always the goal. I was covered in sweat, still breathing heavily, when I was stopped by the fitness staff supervisor. There had yet to be a time when her speaking to me was a good thing. Every single time it had been to interrogate me as to whether I was training others in her gym or not, or correcting people’s form, etc, etc. For your own curiousity, the first answer was a resounding no, though I couldn’t be responsible for others mimicking what I did, and the second answer was yes, because obviously her staff didn’t give a rat’s ass if someone seriously injured themselves.
“Colonel Wieler, we’ve received some complaints from other patrons. They say your workouts are too intense.” she began.
“I’m sorry, what?” I said incredulously, knowing I must’ve misheard her.
“Your workouts are too intense for the other members. I need you to tone it down.” she replied.
I’m sure you could imagine the thoughts running through my head as a raging, unforgiving, white water river. Or perhaps as a volcano, over-pressured, ready to explode. I have no doubt you could string together the colourful expletives that went along with these thoughts, all directed at this half-pint, would be dictator, this same woman who sat at the front desk in the morning eating donuts and chatting on GalNet instead of paying attention to health and well being of her clientele. I had less use for her than I did for an ingrown toenail.
Instead, I exerted my strength of will and practiced remaining calm. It was always important to practice.
“Am I too loud?” I asked.
“Well, no. There were no complaints of that nature.” she wavered, showing her weakness.
“Am I dropping weights? Or leaving them around the facility instead of putting them away when done?” I continued, not relenting.
“Not that anyone has made mention of, no.” she replied, her voice softer.
“Do I not wipe up for the next person when finished? Am I hogging any piece of equipment?” I continued, my voice getting louder and louder.
“The only complaint has been about your intensity.” she replied, realizing perhaps for the first time just how stupid that sounded.
I closed my mouth and glared at her for a moment, gathering my thoughts.
“I’ve had enough of this harassment. I’ve endured your inquiries repeatedly, am I training people, blah, blah blah, but now this is just ridiculous. I will not apologize if I am interrupting their social time. I will not apologize for pushing myself harder while at a gym. I am here to workout. That is why anyone should be here. If you of all people cannot understand that then perhaps I need to complain to station management itself and have someone put in your role that actually understands what a healthy lifestyle is actually about.”
With that I turned, rudely I know, and walked into the men’s change room. I truly, honestly was going to leave it at that but I heard her mumble under her breath before the door closed.
“I wish he’d just go back to his own kind.” is what she had said.
My practicing was done for the day. I stormed back out into the hallway. She had turned to walk away but heard me coming.
“Repeat that to my face.” I said with complete and utter rage showing through my body language.
“Sorry?” she asked, trying to play it off.
“You will be.” I warned. “Say it to my face. Tell me how you want me to go back to my own kind.”
Her face drained of colour. She knew how serious racial allegations were. She would lose her career in a heartbeat and I would make sure of it.
“I didn’t mean it like that.” she stammered. “Please. I meant because you’re a capsuleer. Why do you even come to this gym?”
I diffused. She wasn’t attacking my Minmatar heritage. She was simply another norm biased towards pod pilots.
“I’ll find another gym. This one smells of bigotry.” I said before returning to the change room.