You guys are throwing this topic around of reacting to comments. The whole idea of reacting negatively and aggressively is really a wrong turn. And I'm a pretty aggressive and competitive person saying that. React the opposite.
It all comes down to confidence, you behave like you've looked like that your whole life, and that is truly you. People read that, and keep silent. Like a person with a disability or tattoos, or is really tall or short. They're like that, they know it, it won't change so accept it, and others accept it. Are you going to let others determine what you wear and how you act. No, you would just be yourself.
Some people that worry so much about what others think, I worry what would happen if they became disfigured in a car accident, would they become shut-in's? Never leaving home? Worried about what others think? I hope not, and I certainly don't wish any evil, but I want to stress that it's your life, not a practice run, not a rehearsal, your opinion is just as valid as the president's or that guy staring at you. What do you want as your epitaph? 'Here lays a guy who never wore shorts because he was afraid of what others would say. He even died on a 110F day in Pheonix with pants on. R.I.P.'
Don't worry if others will gossip. Why? Because they always do, they always will. You will find that you have to gain this strength, it takes work to be a true individual. Maybe I think this way because for a few years I worked with people with severe disabilities. I would go to the store and to the movies with them. Everyone would throw out glances and stares. Sometimes the disabled would yell and scream. It became no big deal. I learned that my response of cool and confidence is what got staring eyes to mind their own business. I just learned that human behavior was something not to be concerned with.
I was at the store yesterday in shorts and flip flops (we are lucky down here weatherise), These girls behind me said, 'Well, it's not so bad as long as he doesn't wear polish, you know.' I realized that I couldn't care less. I mean, I didn't care at all. A few weeks ago I also asked for a 4-pack of Venus Vibrance cartridges from this guy behind the counter. He held up the wrong ones, and I yelled across the store, 'Not those. Vibrance, in the red and orange package.' Some women were like snorting or something, but I didn't even care. I just wanted the cartridges. What are they going to do? Throw me in girl-prison for buying girl-razors? They can't. I can buy them if I want.
You have to be above it. Someone says: do you shave your legs. Say: Yeah, I shave my legs. I like to. You'll be amazed how fast they get over it, it'll be accepted, as you would want. Hide it, and they will think they have something on you, it becomes the very thing you don't want it to.
About weights. If somebody likes machines, more power to them. But I agree, dumbells and a good bench is where it's at. I did the whole gym thing for like fifteen years. I now have a good quality flat, incline, decline bench (PowerBlock http://www.powerblock.com/accessories.html
-the pro adjustable white bench only. I absolutely love it, and I've used many, many benches) and a set of plain hex dumbells going from 10 lbs to 80 lbs. Use a lot of knowledge and you can do a lot with this simple setup for the basics and staying toned. But I admit, if I used them as much as my keyboard, I'd be pretty buff by now.