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Skip’s Handbook for Newbie New Year’s Resolutioners

Just Sayin' with Skip Hill

Is this the year you finally follow through on that New Year’s Resolution and start hitting the gym? Here’s your guide to proper gym protocol!

By Skip Hill

This year, instead of just bitching about the New Year’s resolution crowd, I am instead going to do my part and try and help these poor bastards out. This is going to be another one of those charitable rants by yours truly. Your job in reading this is to make a copy of this rant and take it with you so that when you run into a newbie-resolutioner, you can do your part and try to help them like I am. Dealing with these newbies is going to have to be a team effort.

I am NOT going to go the route everyone else does this time of year and bash on New Year’s resolutioners. I guess I want to kind of cut them some slack for even trying to get into the gym in the first place. Who knows? If even a few of them stay around and turn it into their new lifestyle, the sport will have another douchebag that I can find fault with, judge and humiliate publicly with my keyboard. Egoistic hedonism at its finest!

Consider this “Skip’s Handbook For Newbie New Year’s Resolutioners”. If you want to become one of the cool and popular guys in the gym that walks with his arms out to the side due to imaginary massive lats, here are my pointers on how to get there. But before you make your way to the workout area, there are some things you need to know:

It is important to understand that you have every right to use any piece of equipment on the workout floor. This rule is only nullified when someone bigger than you wants what you are using. FYI: Fat and height do not count as “bigger”. Just as in life, the smaller, weaker guy always loses. I don’t make the rules, I am just helping you to understand them.

Never curl in the squat rack. Why? Because bodybuilders on Facebook say so! I am not sure why this rule is in place because only a small fraction of these complaining bodybuilders actually squat anyway. If you stay out of there you won’t have to hear it from the big guys.

After you pull a set of dumbbells off of the rack, do not do your set so close to the rack that it appears your dick is resting on it. If you do this you will be in the way of others. Big guys need to see themselves in the mirrors and if you are in the way, that is not the fastest way to get accepted into the “in” crowd.

If your gym has a basketball court, do not bounce that damned ball until you get to the court. It is incredibly irritating, ranking right up there with shadow boxing in the mirrors.

Do not shadow box in front of the mirrors (see previous entry). I have trained in the same gym as fighters like Brendan Schaub and Shane Carwin. If they want to shadow box in front of the mirrors they can do it. Why? Because they are badasses and you are not. When you shadow box in the gym you are basically saying: “I am not going to impress you with my muscular size so I am going to pretend I can kick your ass if I wanted to.” No you can’t. Please stop.

Leave your phone in your car or at least leave it in your bag. I have two businesses and clients emailing me and contacting me from all over the world every day. I still do not check my phone even once when I am in the gym. I also have four kids and I figure that if they catch on fire when I am not home, they don’t need to call me, they can just stop, drop and roll. I will find out the house burned down when I get home. There is nothing more enraging than watching a fat little twenty-year-old with a backwards flat-billed hat, basketball shorts down to his ankles and more bling than Hammer, check a cell phone while sitting on a piece of equipment that someone else is likely waiting for.

Chalk is meant to help with grip, it is not an interior decorating tool for the gym. If you can’t use it without making a mess, don’t use it. It ain’t rocket science. Rub some on your hands and grab the bar and go.

Do not wear Under Armour anything unless you have the physique for it. If you are not sure, trust me on this one, you don’t.

If I happen to look at your girl and smile, in passing, it is because I am a nice guy. I have no desire to bang her. If that were the case, I wouldn’t have smiled at you. Quit mad-dogging me.

Lastly, and these might be the most important rules yet. Do not, under any circumstance, walk around with your junk hanging out in the locker room. I don’t want to even see an ass cheek. Most people think towels were invented to dry you off – wrong! I am convinced they were made so that I don’t have to see your junk in the locker room or the sauna. Plus, don’t you have a shower at your house? SHOWER THERE! Oh, and FYI: hand dryers are NOT for your bush and balls.

If you master these principles, you will be graduating to the status of full-fledged gym douchebag soon. It will take a lot of work but in the end the payoff will be great. Soon you will be judging other newbies. Now, go out there and show me what you’ve got!

Ken “Skip” Hill has spent 30 years in the trenches of bodybuilding. He owns TEAM SKIP Nutritional Consulting, where he specializes in conditioning for bodybuilders and high-level athletes. You can reach Skip through his website, TEAMSKIP.net and follow him on Twitter (@IntenseMuscle).

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