Avoiding Germs at the Gym
By Donna Stark
Chances are, there are several people you know who are fighting some sort of virus at the moment, and whether it's just a simple cold or its more serious cousin, the flu, you are doing your best to give them their space. But it's hard to stay away from everyone who may be contagious, especially in public places like the gym. Nobody wants to be around others who are unwell, but as much as you don't want to get sick, you also don't want to skip your workouts. So what can you do to protect yourself?
Healthy Gym Habits
Since we are still in the throes of cold and flu season, you need to take preventative measures to reduce your chances of catching what the person next to you has. And as enticing as a protective bubble sounds, you know that realistically, bubbles don't work at the gym. So, you may need to take some other steps to keep yourself safe. Take a look at the following suggestions.
- Wipe down everything - Wiping down all of the equipment before and after you use it is a must at the gym during cold and flu season. Some gyms may provide wipes for everyone to use, but if yours does not, bring your own.
- Use your own mat - Sure, it's one more thing to carry and that can be a pain, but it will be to your benefit if you bring your own mat to the gym. Gym mats are known to be breeding grounds for germs, especially if they are cracked. If you don't own a mat, the second-best option would be to bring a towel to place under yourself.
- Bring your own towels - With that being said, you may want to consider bringing your own towels too, even if your gym offers their own. Like everything else, towels can carry germs and if the employee who is in charge of folding them is under the weather, it increases the chances of you becoming sick too.
- Look for signs - Machines, weights, lockers, and towels aren't the only things to pay attention to. Look for signs of sickness in those around you. You may want to move away from the person coughing in your yoga class or you may decide to cancel your workout if your trainer is constantly sneezing and blowing their nose.
Surviving the Cold and Flu Season
No matter how hard it is to completely protect yourself from the cold and flu, there are plenty of preventative measures you can take. So go ahead and stick to your fitness routine. Just be smart about it!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Culver City, Calif.