Beating the gym germs
In most gyms, mine being the exception, bacteria, fungi and viruses may flourish due to the environment of plenty of heat and humidity, plus the accrued germs that come from everybody that touches the equipment. My trainees certainly aren’t exercising with excessive heat excessive heat that helps keep part of the problem in check.
Many of the viruses and bacteria can survive for hours on the equipment and other surfaces in the gym. This can be a threat to you because of the chaffing and scratches on the skin that regularly occur while using the equipment. This makes it easier for these germs to enter your body. Even though this is a risk, most gyms and strength coaches spend a certain amount of their time keeping your equipment sanitized.
Frequent gym users are well aware of the problems that may present themselves in the way of athlete’s foot and jock itch. However, these are easy to treat, unlike community acquired methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (CA–MRSA) which can be dangerous to your health. MRSA, is an antibiotic resistant bacteria and can be life threatening if not caught in time and didn’t treated with high potency antibiotics.
Certainly, the threats are out there, but there are simple steps that you can take to avoid some of the germs that are prevalent in the gyms. The first up should be common sense in that you wash your gym clothes after each workout. The days of the filthy socks, stinky sweatshirts, and dirty gym shoes are long past. These are simply an invitation for health problems to pop up in your life.
Some people take their gym clothes to the gym in a backpack and change when at the gym and then change out before going home. By doing this, they are allowing the disease causing germs to have a place to rest and regenerate. There are also those who wear their gym clothes back home. These people are spreading the organisms to their car, to their home, and anywhere else, they happen to go while in them.
Once these microbes populate enough, they are better able to penetrate the skin barrier through the aforementioned scratches and chaffing.
Therefore, the simplest solution is to not wear your gym clothes out of the facility but instead take them off when you are finished working out. Put them in your gym bag, wash both clothes, and bag as soon as you get home so you are ready for the next session.
If the bag is one that is not washable, then make a mild bleach solution of one part bleach and 10 parts water and scrub it out.