Why Judgement isn’t always bad
I had an interesting experience in the gym the other day. I was walking across the gym from the water fountain. As I walked through the centre a woman was walking towards me, as she got closer she viscerally adjusted her temperament. She turned a different way, clutching her gym bag into her and striding away with speed. To be honest I have no idea why she did this, clearly it was an instinctual reaction. It was early in the morning, the gym was empty, and I am 6”6 about 220 pounds so people that don’t know me could consider me threatening I guess.
While this wasn’t a particularly great experience for me, I understand her reaction. As a young lady around 5”2 and a 100 pounds, you have to be more considerate of your environment. The judgment she passed of me, while discriminatory could also save her from a potentially bad situation. By mentally and physically preparing herself for the worst she was trying to ensure her safety. I am a gentle giant, but that is not universal, so I would suggest that in this case judgement is very important.
This led me to an interesting thought, is judgement really a bad thing? Judgement is what propels us, it was a judgement that led me to pursue this journey. The judgement that people passed on me and the judgement I passed on myself for the way I looked made me want to change. Going in the every day seeing people lifting much more than me, leading me to judge them as better than me, motivates me, it gets me fired up. Feeling like people are judging me is what gets me through my hard sets sometimes, filming myself knowing I am going to upload it forces me to finish those reps. Ultimately, the motivation comes from inside but knowing there are eyes on you makes you want to achieve.
This is why I am so vehemently against places like planet fitness. You should not choose a gym because you know people won’t be judging you. Especially, at the entry level of fitness, you need people to encourage you to push yourself. When I hear judgement free I hear effort free. People that go to planet fitness go there because it is easy. Fitness is about putting yourself outside of your comfort zone, you have to do things you have never done to get where you have never been. Training environment is half of the battle, if you have a tonne of people pushing you or watching you, you will inevitably push harder. Look at CrossFit, in my opinion, the reason beginner fitness people find so much success in it is because they are surrounded by a group of likeminded individuals encouraging them to push harder.
People go to planet fitness so they can remove guilt from their conscience. They don’t go there to work hard, they simply want to feel fit. Judgement is important, people forget that too easily, clearly, there is a time and a place to pass judgement, and nevertheless it is essential to success in sport!!! Remember strength has no limit!