Ewww… you do what at the gym?

By Siew Ching

Love your workouts on the treadmill? You might want to stop these disgusting gym habits for other gym buddies to love you too.

Ah, the gym. The possibilities of a body you’ve always wanted. Hanging out and learning with like-minded individuals. Sweaty, dirty, sweaty bodies all around.

If you’re a regular gym goer, you know that with sweaty bodies doing their thing at all the different machines, it’s literally a breeding ground for nasties. Not to mention that some members treat the gym like their own personal playground with no regards to rules, regulations, and respect whatsoever. From the grunters to the leave-everything-behinders, poor gym etiquette is not what you signed up for. Here are some nasty gym habits you don’t want to be caught guilty of.

#1 Not wiping sweat off the equipment after using it
Think about this for a second: Do you want to use the dumbbells straight after a really sweaty guy has had his turn? Do you tell him it’s ok, there’s no need to wipe down just hand it to me now. Yeah, we didn’t think so.

Then why aren’t you wiping down the equipment after every use? It’s courtesy for other gym goers, an act you hope everyone else is doing. The last thing you want is to touch equipment soaked with other people’s sweat and germs. Pack a bottle of sanitizer in your gym bag and a towel reserved for this specific use to wipe down your own sweat when you’re done with the equipment. You want to make sure you keep the towel separate from the one you use to wipe your face – you don’t want to be wiping off your sweat with nasty germs you picked up from the other equipment!

#2 Cleaning your gym bag
You’re done with your session, you stuff your dirty towel and sweat-soaked socks inside, you go about your day. You come back the next time and realise you’ve not taken your dirty clothes out of the bag.

No sweat, you say? No way! Did you know that your gym bag is a haven of germs, especially if you’re the type to stuff everything in and take longer than you should to clean it out of the used clothes and equipment? With it being damped and rarely aired out, your gym bag is where bacteria love to hang out. And when you bring it from gym back to home and gym again, who knows what you might have picked up along the way! So do yourself a favour – wash your gym bag regularly to limit the exposure to germs.

#3 Not washing your gym gear
Speaking of sweaty clothes, it's expected to be common sense but sometimes people don’t wash their gear after a sweaty session. The more gross of us even use it again at the next session – eww! Last thing you want is to stink up the gym with your used gym wear. You also don’t want to be that person going round the gym with clothes filled with bacteria, contaminating equipment and public areas. When it comes to the gym, only one rule applies: Keep things clean!

#4 Use the gym as a place to socialise
Not cool – a lot of people go to the gym to do one thing: Workout. They are not there to socialise and talk to you about their weekend plans. When at the gym, exercise your body, not your mouth. Don’t want talkers to disrupt your workout either? Put in your headphones and pretend to be really engrossed. Eventually, people will get the hint you’re not a talker.

#5 Don’t leave your deodorant at home
You may not realise it yourself but you could do with a hit of deodorant. Even if you rarely sweat or stink, applying deodorant before hitting the gym is the least you could do for yourself and those around you. It’s really not pleasant trying to do squats while holding your breath.

#6 Use the space
Sure, you want to use the equipment next to the only other person in the gym but before you plant yourself right next to him, maybe consider using something else? Nobody likes working out with someone literally so close to them. It’s uncomfortable and makes you feel self-conscious, regardless of how confident you are. It’s the same as sitting right next to a person when the train is empty. So space out – give some breathing space between you and the other person so both can enjoy a more comfortable workout.

#7 Go easy on the selfie game
Sure, everyone’s on that post-workout ‘gram but are you literally just snapping photos of yourself in every possible moment, every possible angle? No matter how subtle you think you’re being, you’re not.

#8 Walking barefoot
The gym is not clean, repeat after us! You don’t want to go anywhere barefoot, even if it’s the locker room or the shower where you think it might be ok. It’s not! Bring your shoes and slippers so you have the right footwear to change into every time.

Photo by Victor Freitas on Unsplash.

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