Whether he noticed you struggling with a laughably-light bench press or you noticed his startling form in the squat rack, most gym ‘bromances’ start out casual. You offer to spot someone and boom: Monday, Wednesday, Friday—it’s a date.
That’s not to say it doesn’t have it’s upsides. In the honeymoon period, he’ll help you hit multiple PB’s. You’ll trade protein shake recipes. Your insta-stories become one and the same. Until one day, tragedy strikes. Suddenly: it’s not a PB—you’ve torn the pectoral off the bone. Also: he doesn’t like your coconut protein balls, and his girlfriend says he spends too much time at the gym. Oh and he’s taken up Crossfit.
To cut a long story short: he barely comes to the gym anymore. But when he does, he expects everything to be the same, insisting that you both follow his chicken leg routine. You don’t want to kill the vibe, but find yourself going through the motions, not sure how to tell him you don’t want to work out together anymore. But how do you do it without sounding like a heartless bastard?
You turn to this magnificent piece of literature, currently blowing up The Tasteless Gentleman—among others’— Instagram pages.
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“It’s not me, it’s you”: this is clearly Shakespeare by another name. Instead of hurting his gym-buddy’s feelings, the author of the above texts provides a masterclass in breaking up with your training partner.
First up: be upfront. No one likes a sneaky break up. Or being ghosted. Or confusion. If you feel like you are at different stages in your gym-life, speak up clearly and politely: “Hey bro, I’m gonna start going alone.”
Second: rub salt in the wound (a little). Although this seems counter intuitive, it is actually helpful to take a light jab at their ego (workout) so that they don’t try to talk you round. Also because it helps them understand why you made the decision: “I don’t get the same pumps with some of your workouts like I do alone.”
Third: provide a secondary excuse: “We have different body types,” (read: you’re not on my level anymore).
Fourth: remind them that you’re still happy to do some non-consequential workouts with them: “Arms, legs and abs are always f*cking amazing with you.”
Read it through. Then read it again. And again. That, right there, is a medicine ball to the ~feels~.
The good people of Instagram concurred, tagging each other with comments like, “I’m getting too big for you now,” “gym break ups are the worst,” and “why you gotta be like that, homeslice.”
Further standouts included tagging a now going-it-alone mate with, “How I feel when you tell me you have a program,” and “these bros ain’t loyal.” Oh and for those that got dumped, @doublejmma came up with the ultimate retort: “It’s not your chest bro… It’s mine.”
Use it wisely.