Serial Trainer

{July 31, 2008}   health club etiquette

This will probably be the first post in a long line of posts. Not only as a professional, do I write this, but as a fellow gym rat.

Today’s Lesson: The Importance of a Towel 101

Have you ever gone to the gym and picked out the perfect treadmill? It’s in the best spot in front of the monitor with your favorite TV show already to begin. It’s got the perfect amount of air circulation and there’s not too many people around it. You stalk it for a few moments with predatory glare, marking it for yourself and warding off any would-be, wayword, treadmill trekkies from making their claim on what is clearly..your treadmill. Only to stand, feet on either side of the tread that it’s filthy!?

I mean, who was on this thing? An entire track team of sweating, frothing, rabid gazelle?? Now, mind you I’m already a germaphobe. I carry wipes in my purse. I’m borderline OCD about it. Maybe a little more than I let on so people don’t think I’m a freak. But staring down at this treadmill makes me ill just looking at it and I certainly don’t want to touch it.

It takes but a minute. That’s it. Just one, measly minute to grab a paper towel and wipe down your treadmill. Even less than that to wipe your face and neck when you’re jogging/walking to avoid a Splashtown Park-fest on the treadmill. As a trainer, I even taught my clients to wipe up the equipment after they were done with the exercise before we moved onto the next one.

You may think that it’s the club’s job and if you do, let me take a moment to collect my spiraling skull cap from the next room.

This is a health, hygiene and respect issue. First of all, your club dues are for the facilities and the equipment to be there. It’s a courtesy that it’s clean. It’s what draws in more people. But if you treat your club like the slums, what does that say about you? It’s the proverbial finger to the next member whom also pays their dues. Not to mention, who do you think you are? Would you urinate on the treadmill and expect someone making 8 bucks an hour to clean up that human waste? What do you think sweat is?

I know, I know. This sounds harsh. But folks, this is how things like Hepatitis and other nasty little things are spread. My own four boys aren’t this dirty. And boys can be really dirty! At the very least, mop up your own puddle.

And if you’re sweating gallons, wipe yourself down before sitting/laying down on padded equipment and then kindly wipe it down when you’re done. It’s nothing more than asking you to make the gym your home away from home and keeping it clean for other guests. Surely you wouldn’t tinkle on your toilet seat and smile before offering the throne to a female (or male!) guest would you? At least, I hope not (gag).

It says something about YOU, the member if you can leave such a mess behind. We call you the Health Club Wannabe Divas. You’re too good to clean up after yourself and you expect someone else to do it for you. To be honest, you should be ashamed of yourself. It makes me want to call all your mothers and watch them drag you by the ear to clean it up.

Have some pride in yourself and your club. Carry a towel with you. Carry a few paper towels with you if you need to, to mop up any puddles of sweat you leave. Most clubs leave even the sanitary spray right next to them.

And most of all, enjoy your workout.


Cupcake says:

Can you please write a post on not SMOKING (!!!!!) while you exercise???

What is with people?!

Also, going the same direction as everyone else on the track!!

I think that’s all that’s bugging me today! ๐Ÿ™‚

unsaintly says:

Smoking while exercising, whaaat?! Where are you at when this happens? (Laughing!)

Cupcake says:

At least I was outside, but I was outside on the walking/jogging track at the Y that surrounds a playground and practice soccer fields. I was shocked absolutely speechless!

And can you believe that she had the nerve to give me the stinkeye when I walked around her and waved the smoke out of my face??


Ron says:

I was just reading about this today. Apparently there are a lot of fitness nuts (like marathoners and triathletes) who smoke! I know at bike meets they have ‘green’ versus ‘clean’ races, in which the pot smokers face off against the non-smokers.

Cupcake says:

Oh, she wasn’t smoking pot. Just plain old cigarettes. And also, she was no marathoner or triathlete!

Somehow, I feel like they have earned it…I don’t know why! ๐Ÿ™‚

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