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The Gym

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The Gym As I pull open the steel rimmed glass door on this warm summer evening, the coolness of the air conditioning sweeps past my face. The young, pretty receptionist sits behind the tall wooden desk with a big smile on her face and greets me as I enter with a cheerful, "Good evening!" as if she knows me personally or her boss is monitoring her actions. She asks for my membership number before tapping it into the computer with her long French manicured nails, my face appears on a monitor in front of me. Her heavily made up mask like face glows slightly orange from what I imagine is a considerable amount of fake tan. A strong sickly smell lingers around a large display of lilies, making me feel headachy and ill. She tells me "Go right through Sir have a nice workout." As I begin to step away my heavy gym bag falls from my shoulder and I become aware of my exhaustion, after a long hard day. Trudging up the carpeted stairs with heavy, wearied footsteps my eyes meet the images of the perfect physiques on the plain canvas walls. ...read more.


One swaggering individual whips off his T-shirt to reveal his tensed stomach muscles displaying a sculpted silhouette on the wall. His bulging biceps are a dense network of prominent, pulsing veins. Beads of perspiration decorate his forehead like drizzle on the windshield of a car; he wipes them off with his big meaty hands. Small rivulets of sweat roll down his puffed out cheeks. The other men in the group continue to ferociously pump their enlarged frames, hog-like grunts escaping from their straining mouths. Occasionally they turn their stout shoulders and scan the room in search of female attention. A red haired man begins to amble towards the imperious contingent. The superior males catch a glimpse of him, his eyes fall to the floor and his head drops. Cruel laughter pounds his scrawny body and his freckled face blazes red with shame. The man meets my gaze and I find myself looking away quickly to avoid sharing his humiliation. I then ask myself why I should care what those gorillas think of me. ...read more.


I feel an unexpected empathy towards the red headed man as I advance to the alpha male corner. Then the hubbub of their lively banter fades away as I nervously approach the expectant gathering. Interested looks flicker from one bulky body builder to another. I get onto the bench press, lying down on the smooth surface. Wordlessly, one of the giants passes me a set of weights to lift. His chiselled face contorts with the effort of handing the heavy iron weights to my outstretched waiting arms. The man assists me whilst the weights are placed carefully upon my expectant chest. I inhale and prepare to lift this mighty weight. I feel a slight tremor in my tensed arms and then I exhale all the air from my lungs. I lock my lanky limbs and push upwards with a gigantic effort. I shut my eyes tight and an involuntary guttural sound escapes from my straining throat. Elation wraps me in its warm embrace. 'Well done Mate' says one of the men hoarsely. Slowly, realisation and understanding tap me on the shoulder. This is my world and I have been accepted into it. My sense of belonging is here. Harley Allen English Coursework ...read more.

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