Gym rat (plural gym rats)
1. (colloquial) a person who spends an unusually large amount of time at a gym
The term ‘gym rat’ has been around since the advent of the modern fitness movement. It has become a badge of honor amongst those who pride themselves on their dedication to fitness. They are the ones putting the most work in and spending the most time in the gym. It is assumed that all this hard work and time is going to deliver the results that they crave.
Isn’t this backward thinking? Should we pride ourselves on spending the most time exercising or getting the best results in the shortest amount of time? I love working out as much as the next guy. Actually, I love it much more than the average person but I have a lot of other obligations. I have a career and relationships to maintain and a need to sleep. I would love to spend hours in the gym because I love it there. But I can’t devote that amount of time to my daily workout. My devotion to fitness has to be in balance with the rest of my life.
I don’t want to be a gym rat. A rat is an omnivore, it will eat anything that it comes across. Rats typically live in close proximity to humans, hoping to live off our castoffs. A rat will spend its life hanging around and hoping to get a good meal that day. Does this sound like the animal that you want to identify with?
I identify with the wolf. The wolf is a hunter, it doesn’t hope to find some food. The wolf wakes up every day with a goal: a successful hunt. Wolves don’t pride themselves on spending more time in the pursuit of food, the goal is to acquire sustenance as quickly and efficiently as possible.
This is how I pursue my fitness goals. I don’t have the time to hang around the gym all day hoping for something good to happen. Every time I walk into the gym, I have a plan for what I’m going to do that day and I’m going to accomplish it as quickly and efficiently as possible so I can move on to the other things in my life. I am not a gym rat, I am a gym wolf.
gym wolf (plural gym wolves)
1. (colloquial) a person who achieves unusually good results while spending as little time as possible in the gym
I have found that one hour a day works for me. It’s sustainable and it allows me to be consistent. When I was younger, I was an athlete and I devoted more time every day to my fitness. But my life is busier now and I’m in this for the long haul. I take no pride in time spent, only effort given. When I walk through the doors of the gym, I am a hunter and I am hunting for results. I know exactly what I am. There’s only one question that you should asking yourself right now.
Are you a gym wolf?