Forced to Change

Do you ever have a workout completely planned out and then you’re forced to change it because certain machines or weights are occupied at the gym?

This used to happen to me a lot more often when I hit the gym after work, but at 5:30 a.m., the weights or machines I want to use are usually available.

Today that simply wasn’t the case. Apparently it was Squat Rack Wednesday at the gym this morning because for the entire time I was at the gym, the two squat racks were occupied.

Ryan always says that when the weights or machines he wants to use are occupied, he takes it as a challenge to do a new exercise or think outside of the box. I look at it as a fantastic opportunity to walk by the weights several times, sighing in annoyance so they’ll stop hogging the machine and let me do my thing.

I’m just kidding, I promise!

I’ve tried to adopt Ryan’s tactic as well. This morning revamping my LiveFit leg workout a bit proved quite successful because I left the gym feeling like I got a great leg workout.

leg workout

Links to descriptions of some of the moves:

It was one of the best leg workouts I’ve had in quite some time.


When Ryan and I arrived home from the gym, we ate a quick breakfast before taking Sadie on a walk around the neighborhood.

waffle breakfast sandwich 050

I topped two toasted Van’s waffles with muenster cheese, raspberry jelly and two fried eggs.

waffle breakfast sandwich 055

For some reason the cheese tasted extra delicious this morning. Mmm!

Of Possible Interest

Question of the Morning

  • What do you do when you’re unable to do the workout you originally planned? Throw in the towel? Try out something new?


  1. says

    I do the annoyed stare too (and it’s something I’m trying to stop doing, because I’m no more entitled to the machine than they are)…but I understand the frustration! Since I have a limited repetoire of strength exercises, it’s hard for me to pick something else to swap in!


  2. says

    I really like planning and hate change… so it’s always tough for me when I have to modify my workout. I try to have the same attitude as Ryan, but it doesn’t always work out! Btw, I finally tried a fried egg breakfast sandwich with jam and it was absolutely delicious!!! Thanks for the great idea 🙂


  3. says

    I always get annoyed when people sit on the weight machines and aren’t moving or are sitting there texting and acting like they are working out. But like you said I try to move on and come up with something else to do! That breakfast is making me hungry!


  4. says

    I hate it when the treadmills at my gym are taken (there are only 3). Sometimes I throw in the towel and other times I switch up my running days and hope I’ll have better luck the next day. Wish I thought like Ryan did more often!


  5. says

    I hate it when people are on the weight machines and sitting there texting or not working out. It’s not a love seat! But I try to find something else to do like you said 🙂 By the way that breakfast is making me hungry!


  6. says

    So happy you were able to adapt to Squat Rack Wednesday (too cute Julie!!! hehe!!!) Seriously though, sometimes changing a workout we had in mind can be frustrating. Proud of you 🙂


  7. says

    I’ll just change it up. I’ll rarely throw in the towel. I workout at home so my machines are never occupied, but some days I’ll plan a hardcore workout and then I just feel like taking it easy so I change it to something easier or shorter in length. It’s no big deal 🙂


  8. says

    I admit, I do get annoyed for a few minutes but then move on and come up with a plan b. I might have to check out the live fit workouts mine are getting boring and I need a change!


  9. says

    I need to get better and adapt Ryan’s mindset!!! Squat racks and leg presses are my favorite machines so I really get bummed when I can’t get on one!! But I try to change it up as well. Gyms are so intimidating to me anyway (especially the weights area) that I hate wandering around trying to think of a new exercise to do!!


  10. says

    I hate when people dilly dally at a machine forever! If they’re legitamately using it, I don’t get annoyed but if they’re taking their sweet time and sitting for 5 minutes between each set I get a little peeved. But if a weight machine is taken usually I just give up on lifting weights for the day and just do more cardio 🙂


  11. says

    I like Ryan’s attitude! It does irk me a bit when the equipment I need is being used, but I find that since I work out really early in the morning, this isn’t usually the case. Squat racks seem to be the most in-demand though, and I like to get squats out of the way first. If the rack is taken, I usually grab a barbell that I can lift up onto my shoulders safely (so not as much weight as on the rack) and do a bunch of squat variations with more reps. Have a great day Julie!


  12. says

    ughhhh – one of my biggest gym pet peeves. There’s a guy at my gym that hogs the squat rack for, no joke, an HOUR! So many times I would just stand there looking at him which is usually the universal signal for “I’m waiting for your machine…hurry up.” but no…he just doesn’t get it. I always have to ask him if he’s almost done. “Two more sets!”, he always says haha.


  13. Emily says

    It drives me nuts! It’s one thing when someone is using the machine in a way that is appropriate but I get so frustrated when someone sits forever between sets or does a hundred reps as if they were the only person in the room, especially because unless you just stand next to them waiting, it’s not always clear that there are people waiting to use the machine.

    I think people should be mindful of the fact that there are likely others who want to get in and take a turn even if you think you’re the only person who wants that machine.


  14. Sarah says

    I get annoyed if a peson is taking an excessive amount of time on a machine. The squat racks are hard to get at my local gym, so I often have to change my workout because I will not see it free up in the hour or so I’m at the gym. The problem with the squat rack is often we have several guys working together on it leaving it near impossible to even get in between sets! And I often go to the gym at 5 am-I can’t imagine trying to get it after 4:30 pm!


  15. says

    There have been a few times I have gone to the gym and had to change up my plan. One time it was so packed that I actually went into the basketball court and just did my Nike Training Club app.


  16. says

    i hate when that happens! i try not to get frustrated but i’ve found myself going to the gym later in the evening to avoid this. unfortunately, going to the gym at 10pm leaves me wide awake for hours after.

    I think I may have to adapt to Ryan’s methods.

    i’ve never tried cheese on waffles. kinda freaks me out a bit. 🙂


  17. Sara @ The Foodie Diaries says

    If the machine I want to use is occupied I usually try to improvise as well and come up with a new workout. For me it’s really been hit or miss. Sometime’s I’ll come up with a replacement workout that kicks my butt and sometimes it just doesn’t do it for me and I end up waiting for the machine anyways. The great thing about the gym I go to is there are several different versions of every machine spread out all over the gym so that even if the machine I want to use is taken, there’s an alternate machine that works the same muscles that I can jump onto. Win win!


    • Sara @ The Foodie Diaries says

      P.S. This may sound extremely strange/weird/fillintheblank, but Sadie was in my dream last night. Yes, I dreamt about your dog. I promise I’m normal? Hahaha I was taking my dog for a walk and all of a sudden Sadie came sprinting towards us and started playing with my pup and they became best friends. Basically, Sadie is famous taking over blog readers dreams one dream at a time 😉


  18. Angela says

    I’m laughing out loud reading everyone’s responses. If they are sitting on a machine and not using it, my technique is to tap them, usually a male, on the shoulder and ask them if they are using the machine. They always say no and move right away. : )

    But if I have to improvise, I always do lunges or some sort of free weight since it’s not a machine.


  19. says

    Last summer I was at the gym and the power went out during BodyPump! The instructor did a few tracks without music — just counting the beats — but we all agreed it just wasn’t the same. I hung out & did some weights on my own, but it wasn’t long before I called it quits!


  20. says

    I really like Ryan’s idea to use it as an opportunity for change! I really never have that problem, because the majority of my workouts come from teaching group exercise classes, and I do my bootcamp workouts at home. But, my husband goes to the gym every morning at 5 am- and the weight room definitely has a few people in it at that time. I hear him come home and complain any time that anyone monopolizes a machine for too long (but he is a creature of habit!)


  21. says

    Try something new! Our gym is always crowded, even at 5:30 am. Usually it’s a specific weight machine that’s occupied. Since I tend to hop around anyway, I’ll just try something else.


  22. says

    I have actually had some of my best workouts when the machines I was planning to do are occupied. If definitely forces me to think outside the box, and when you are making things up in your head as you go, you don’t have time to get intimidated about you workout. Simple “feeling out” how much of a workout you are getting is so much better than planning a workout, then dreading every second of it.


  23. says

    Don’t laugh but I finally broke down and googled Muenster (cheese)!LOL. At first I thought maybe you were just using a slang word or maybe it was some fun name you and ryan gave the cheese but then I quickly came to realize that probably wasn’t the case:) Next time I go over to Buffalo I might have to look for this tasty sounding cheese!


  24. Sandy says

    How funny, we are on the same program/same days. Since I am not talented enough to come up with my own workout I simply move on to the next activity until the machine is empty then I will do the excercise I was suppose to do.


  25. says

    I used to get so frustrated when all the treadmills were in use, especially if people were walking super slow on them since there was a track too!
    In regards to the above comment, I had never heard of Muenster cheese either until I started reading your blog!


  26. says

    I get a little wigged out when things don’t go according to plan. Like when planned summer runs get nixed by downpours or extreme air conditions. I don’t have a gym or treadmill to turn to. But I will always have yoga. Yoga makes my mindset all better 🙂


  27. says

    This almost happened to me yesterday. There’s a group of three people at my gym who like to do a mini “group” arm workout in the free weights section, but they take up the whole area! I was going to just throw in the towel and just do my arm workout at home, but then I decided “nope, not gonna let that happen” so I just moseyed my way over and stood on the outskirts and did my own thang. Haha.


  28. says

    I have to be honest, I’m guilty of seeing it as the perfect excuse to skip that machine that particular day. Or at least, I used to. Now I tend to do my strength workouts at home so it’s not a problem!

    Machine hoggers are the worst, especially when they’re just sitting on the machine texting!


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