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Illness Prevention at the Gym

March 22, 2016

The winter season is winding down, and the summer months are fast approaching. That doesn’t mean you should take liberties with your wellbeing when working out.

Illness Prevention

Catching the flu or other illness can disrupt your gym programme until you recover. Even then, you will have to make up for lost time. To reduce the chances of catching a nasty dose or bug, here are some tips for you to follow.

Observe your surroundings

It goes without saying, illnesses can spread from person to person. Other visitors to the gym might be training in spite of a cold or could be unaware that they are poorly. By keeping alert to other people, you can monitor if you need to keep your distance from anybody who might be showing symptoms of a flu or other illness. Minimising contact from hands or floors against your face gives you the best chance of illness prevention. If you are the one who is beginning to feel unwell, take time away from the gym.

Wipe down machines

It is good practice to leave machines like treadmills and cycles in the condition you left them, but don’t forget to keep them clean too. There is no harm in wiping handles and other parts down before you begin your workout. The most effective method to clean equipment isn’t a towel, however. Instead, anti-bacterial wipes or sprays do the best job in removing residue and dirt. Keep enough handy for a second clean-up when you are finished.

Bring your own workout items

When it is time to move away from the gym machines, you can reduce the risks of catching an illness by using your own equipment. Boxing a punch bag barehanded, for example, risks causing redness or cuts to your knuckles. Using a shared pair of gloves isn’t necessary ideal either as they can harbour illnesses too. If you have your own pair, keep them clean from time to time. Yoga mats can become very unclean without consistent care if you require one for your training. Finally, use or buy your own hygiene products.

Be mindful when you wash

Showering at least once every workout is ideal, but hazards may lurk around every corner even when you wash. If you have a cut or wound, bring spare bandages for reapplication in case the bandage you’re using becomes worn. Infections are more likely to occur if you have exposed cuts. Walking barefoot on a damp bathroom floor can result in fungal infections over time, so bring a pair of waterproof socks. Have a shower before entering a swimming pool or hot tub so your body doesn’t introduce bacteria to the water.