Junior Gio Ruiz once thought the Rec Center was a friendly place to get his pump, but now he is afraid to even step foot inside. “I used to love working on my swol bod,” Ruiz said, “but now I can’t even go in without feeling objectified.”
The problem began this semester when Ruiz began wearing cutoff shirts to the gym. “I did a lot of curls this summer and sleeves were just caging the pythons,” he said. But he didn’t expect the reactions he got to his clothing choice. “When I would come in in a sweatshirt, people treated me like I meant business, but now girls won’t stop staring and it makes me uncomfortable.”
Ruiz hoped this wouldn’t continue, but as he kept working out women continued to stare. “Some try to be discreet, looking at me lift through the mirror, but most just stare like I’m a big, jacked piece of meat and wolf howl at me when I pick up a weight,” Ruiz said, almost in tears, “some even come over to me while I’m benching and try to give me advice, touching my pecs without even asking.”
Distraught over his harassment in the weight room, Ruiz attempted to bring the matter to the Rec Center administration. Reportedly, when approached, Rec Center employee Lisa Schumann told Ruiz that if he didn’t want the attention he shouldn’t wear such revealing shirts.
When asked what he planned to now, Ruiz said boldly “I’m not going to let them make me ashamed of the way I dress, or my body. I wear cut-off shirts because they are comfortable; I’m not asking for attention like girls with their short-shorts.”