Four principles of etiquette to follow at Gregory Gym

Albert Zhao

The 40 Acres can feel cramped at times, but few places rival the congestion of Gregory Gym. Between the gym’s peak hours of 5–8 p.m., a combination of inadequate space, sweaty stench and competing hip-hop and electronic music blaring from personal speakers can be excruciating. Whether you are peacefully jogging or aggressively deadlifting, your workout can be spoiled by someone’s lack of consideration. Here are some rules to follow on your next trip to Gregory so you and your fellow Longhorns can peacefully coexist and exercise.

Put it in your cubby

When Gregory gets crowded, the last thing you expect is to trip over a stranger’s backpack because the person came straight from class and didn’t know where to put it. You need to put your belongings in a locker if you don’t have time to run home or back to your car before your workout. A number of campus buildings, from McCombs to Garrison, supply lockers for students to use. They usually require you to bring your own lock, so head over to GRE 2.204 to see which locker you can use. You can also place your things directly in Gregory’s $32-per-semester lockers or its daily coin-lockers, which cost a quarter each time. Remember, don’t blockade your fellow gym mates.

Be a sweetie, wipe the seatie

Gyms smell because sweat smells. The issue isn’t the liquid itself but your skin bacteria breaking down sweat secretions, thus releasing your unique blend of body order. This is a bit gross to think about, but picture the hundreds of people whose sweat compounds on gym equipment daily. Don’t be the person contributing to this collection after using the gym bench. Bring a towel to wipe down equipment after use. Exercise mats, the seats of exercise machines and displays on treadmills should all be dry and presentable for your fellow gym mate’s use. Gregory fortunately provides towels for students to borrow; however, they cost either $1 a day or $28 a semester, so remember to pack one with you beforehand.

Clean up, clean up everybody do your share

Failing to return equipment after using it is a novice mistake committed by people in gyms everywhere, but in one as crowded as Gregory, it causes an extra level of chaos. If you are using dumbbells, medicine balls or any other retrievable equipment, you should put it back right after use. Not only is it rude to hog shared equipment, but people who just came in will not know what’s available. This advice is particularly aimed at people lifting, especially those who leave a junkyard of weights at their feet.

Sharing is caring

If you’re new to exercising in Gregory, you may feel confused by what’s available for you to use since so many people are there. Don’t be afraid to ask someone if he or she is finished with the equipment. If the person is not, then ask for a time estimate. You’re as entitled to the equipment as the marathon runner in training. But if you’re feeling too shy to ask if someone is done using the treadmill, The Daily Texan has a useful video of routes around Austin to accommodate your jog.