Matt De Groot: Guys, here’s why picking up at a gym is not OK

Matt de Groot

He's not just Fitzy and Wippa's newsreader or a panelist for The Morning Show, FOX Sports, and the ABC – Matt de Groot is also Be's newest columnist. He'll be taking us on a deep dive into the world of dating and relationships... from a guy's perspective.

I read an article listing the gym as one of the best places to pick up in 2018.

I have so many problems with this claim I barely know where to start.

This is probably more for the fellas, but let me say this once, straight, and without confusion: Trying to pick up a girl at the gym is NOT OK.

The gym has been listed as the best place to meet someone. But Matt says it's not okay. Source: Getty

(The article by a ‘dating expert’ also listed the movies as another great place to pick-up. What?! Who is standing in the foyer of a cinema, looking for love?)

But I digress. Guys - trying to pick-up in a gym is a terrible idea.

It’s my experience that there is a sizeable-gulf between men and women when it comes to how they feel about themselves in a gym.

For men, there is body dysmorphia in one direction whereby they feel bigger, stronger, more ripped, more jacked and generally more impressive than they really are.

They go into primal mode, times a thousand.

Men feel

This is why men spend so much time grunting, dropping weights and preening in mirrors at gyms – because we feel that we are clearly awesome.

For women, the gym is a place to go and improve yourself in a safe, judgment-free environment.

(In fact, I fear too many women have body dysmorphia in the other direction whereby they feel the need to work on areas that are already looking great.)

And so, here we all are, inside a sweat box of a gym, guys feeling like legends and girls just going about their business…

Now to be fair, I can see why a guy, fresh of a max lift set, can look at a girl in the gym and think ‘Who wouldn’t want a piece of this? Did you just see what I did? I am a weapon.’

Let me tell you right now - they probably don’t.

If you think girls like being hit on in the gym, Matt says

As I understand, girls aren’t really into super-jacked guys as is, so don’t then try forcing that sweaty, inflamed - but still probably unimpressive - presence onto a girl who is mid-workout.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve seen them there for the third time in a week, and locked eyes twice, they’re not thinking what you are.

It also doesn’t matter that girls look great in active wear, their mindset walking into a gym isn’t, ‘God, I can’t wait for some guy to see me in this and hopefully come and have a crack.’

Just because they look great in active wear, doesn't mean they want male attention. Source: Getty

So don’t.

Now, if you just HAVE TO - and there is no way you can go on if you don’t make yourself known - there are a few things you can do to not come across as a total creep.

Don’t try to keep making eye contact by bouncing your eye-line between the 16 different mirrors on the walls, especially mid-exercise.

Don’t flex and lift heavier. You’ll look like a d**khead.

Certainly don’t shadow their workout or use their equipment straight after them.

And even worse, don’t ask to jump in between sets to ‘inadvertently’ start conversation.

No one likes guys that flex their muscles. Source: Getty

Just be casual, be patient, and if after a couple of days of generic harmless conversation about the terrible gym music, or the difficulty of the class, perhaps… perhaps suggest grabbing a coffee or a smoothie or something at some stage.

But go in there expecting it to be a no.

It’s January, and gyms are packed with people living out their ‘New Year, new me’ mantras, and so this warning feels timely.

Gyms, in particularly the weights area, are a pretty intimidating place to walk into, don’t make it worse by bringing your terrible game into a place it definitely isn’t wanted.

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