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How To Be A Terrible Training Partner In A Private Gym

By: Brian Carroll (written in Feb 2016)


Chances are if you are training in a private gym, it’s not because of money issues, lack of dedication to your goals and or lack of training desire. It means whatever your goal may be; it’s not going to happen in a commercial box gym where there is no intensity, rules out the ass, and more clowns than a Barnum and Bailey’s circus, which is not conducive to lifting big weights and getting jacked.

Adam Driggers founded team Samson in 2003, and I joined right after in the middle/end of 2003. The mentality was a little bit different back then with newcomers to the gym, but most things have remained the same. Want to get run off faster than you thought possible? Try these things out when you are trying to make an impression on the gracious people that are giving you a chance to be a part of something scarce. A gym that helps you get better at what you love and all that it requires is commitment.

Be Selfish

This one is pretty simple. Only worry about yourself and your (most likely) crappy and mediocre lifts at best. Don’t ever come early, and don’t ever offer to stay late, and most of all, only worry about your lifting and nobody else’s. Team camaraderie is overrated anyway. Worry about your lifts and make sure that’s all that is on your radar as soon as you walk in the gym. There is no such thing as support as a team and being a part of the team. That is only for nerds and team sports.

Be Hard Headed

Whatever you do, don’t listen to expert or experienced lifters advice (if you are lucky enough to have them around) and do your own thing at all costs. Get an online Bro coach with a 1200 total at 220. No matter how many times you repeat the same mistakes, don’t ever take advice from seasoned vets. Learn everything the hard way and hope that you have enough time doing it alone and your style. It always works out well for these types, so why change?

Be An Askhole

Ask everyone in the gym about their opinions and for their help; follow either none or all of it at the same time so you can have no clue what works or not. Then go on the forums and social media polling random opinions on something they have zero investment in and listen to (some of) them too and implement it all at once. Or never change anything and never have results you look for. This is great for gym morale and vibe, so be sure to do this. Oh, and make sure that you bash them online with either overt or passive remarks. This is always great.

Be Cheap & A Mooch

Don’t ever volunteer to pay for lunch, chip in for equipment, pay your dues late, and use other lifters’ shit non-stop; let everyone know how broke you are at all times and how many people have helped you in the past. Make sure never to offer your handlers dinner or to comp their room when you travel. They should be paying money to help you succeed. It is an honor to be able to watch you dive into average lifts at best and to observe you struggle day in and day out. A real celebration for all of us! All this aside, training with our team doesn’t come with a monthly fee, but it is certainly not ‘free.’ Nothing with value is free.

Be Late Often

We know that shit happens where you are simply behind, and things come up. Not this – but just come and go when you please. It helps the morale of the team to have you creaking the door open in the middle of a big set or to short your team adequate spotters on a big lift day. It also means that you don’t care what time we ‘start,’ you will get there when it is right for you, and the time established doesn’t work for you. This is all good stuff and will help you become accepted by the team.

If you want to make your stay in a private gym short-lived, then follow the above, and I can promise you that you will not last long.

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Brian Carroll

Brian is a world-class powerlifter with over two decades of elite and pro-level powerlifting under his belt. Coming back from a devastating back injury in 2012 that broke multiple bones and that most experts said he would never recover from, he has returned to the pinnacle of world-class lifting (while 100% pain and symptom-free) and is now dedicated to helping others avoid the same mistakes that he made in the past through private and group coaching in Jacksonville, FL. Brian’s impressive recovery has given him the opportunity to teach and deliver talks to physical therapists, chiropractors, medical doctors, professional strength & conditioning coaches and experts from all facets of sport, on how to avoid injury, while building anti-fragile strength and resilience in athletes.
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