I went to Planet Fitness for the first time last night since checking it out last week. I went to check it out during the day time and it seemed pretty calm. I learned something new last night: Never go to Planet Fitness at 8 o’clock at night. The place was jam packed. It was filled with people. Still there were enough machines to do my workout. What bothered me was the fact that the free weights were taken over.
Now, Planet Fitness has this thing about having a judgement free zone. And that it’s not a gym but a place to exercise. They have a big sign above the free weights saying “No Lunks.” And even has a Lunk Alarm.
So what is a lunk? According to Planet Fitness, a lunk is someone who at a “typical” gym would be there grunting and snorting, dropping weights, wearing one of those tiny tank tops, filled with muscles and telling people what to do in their weight lifting. And to tell the truth, I’ve met a few lunks in gyms in the past. One time at a gym, I was doing squats and a lunk came by and told me not only how I was doing the squats wrong but how I should be doing them right. I saw guys grunting and snorting trying to lift as heavy a weight as possible and then bragging about it. Some guys even were flexing in front of the mirror. And Planet Fitness is supposed to be a lunk free place.
Last night, I saw guys who might be lunks taking over the free weights area. Now, I’m not trying to complain here, but I love using free weights. But there were guys who were packing on the weights onto the smith-machines and grunting while doing squats and presses. I felt kinda intimidated going over there and trying to muscle my way in (forgive the pun) so I could use the weights. I felt pushed aside to the machines instead.
Now, don’t get me wrong, these machines were great. And they were made to work every muscle. I had a good work out with the machines. It’s just that I didn’t get to use free weights like I really like to.
Now, what’s the difference between a lunk and what I call a musclehead. In fact, musclehead is where I got the term originally for this blog. A muscehead can be confused for a lunk sometimes. But there’s a huge difference. A musclehead is wiling to spot you at a drop of a hat and then be an encouragement to you as you do your squats or bench press. A musclehead takes due diligence of what they are doing, how they are doing things, and doesn’t place their own expectations onto other people. And when you ask a musclehead for help about a muscle group or an exercise, they’re willing to assist without judging you. I like muscleheads. I’m not sure about lunks though.
So, all in all, I had a good work out at Plane Fitness. I’m looking forward to going again. I like the idea of having a judgement free zone. I like the idea of being free of not worrying about how much I’m lifting compared to someone else, or being interrupted in my routine because I’m not doing what someone else is doing.
This time I’m planning on going during the day so I can avoid the crowd at night. And hopefully I can avoid the lunks that took over the free weights.
Now, this gets me to thinking sometimes about what it means for me as a follower of Jesus. This is Spiritual Musclehead you know. How many times are we more spiritual lunks than we are spiritual muscleheads? How many times do we expect people to live the lives we live because we think it’s the only right way to live a life. Now, I know that there is a need to follow Jesus. And to stay with the teachings of Jesus. But when we start to place rules upon someone else because they aren’t fitting into our own set of rules, then we being to become spiritual lunks. We become people who tell others what to do when we haven’t been asked yet.
Instead, we need to live more like spiritual muscleheads. We need to be willing to be there at a drop of a hat for someone in need. We need to be willing to be ready to give the answer to the reason for the hope we have when asked. We need to live in a judgement free place while at the same time offering the hospitality of Jesus to others so that they might want to know more.
How can you be a spiritual musclehead?