How to Avoid COVID-19 at the Gym
If you are an avid gym-goer and the state you live in still has their gyms open, there are some COVID-19 precautions you need to be taking. Different states are operating on their own rules and choosing what to heavily enforce. For example, up north they strictly enforce the use of masks and require their members to wear masks the entire time they are in the gym. However, here in Georgia mask wearing isn’t as consistent. You will see some people wear their masks and others meander around the gym without a mask. It’s up to you to make sure you are doing your part as a gym member to avoid coming in contact with the virus. Here are some ways you can contribute to maintaining a clean, safe environment at the gym.
Wear a face mask.
The most basic precaution you can take is always wearing your face mask. If there is a time where you feel the urge to take it off, stick it out. By tolerating how uncomfortable it is to wear a mask, you are keeping yourself and those around you safe. People breathe heavily indoors and you don’t want to walk into people’s germs. For a more comfortable fit while working out, wear a face mask that is Nike Dri-FIT or any brand that uses polyester fabric. According to Runners Need, polyester fabric transports moisture, sweat and heat away from the skin to the outside of the garment where it evaporates. Staying dry as much as possible under your mask will encourage you to keep it on for the entire duration of your gym visit.
Bring your own essentials.
Make sure to bring your own towels, yoga mats, and water bottles to avoid using the intimates that the gym provides. There are gyms that offer heated towels, gym mats and cups to fill up on water. Although, there isn’t any guaranteed certainty that the gym that you subscribe to thoroughly cleans all of their essentials. You don’t want to use a towel that has been gently washed or a yoga mat that hasn’t been swiped down all week. To skip the anxiety of asking how these items are sanitized, bring your own from home.
Avoid peak times at the gym.
Figure out what the peak times are at your gym, and go in between those times. When you go to the gym during downtimes, you avoid coming in contact with a large number of people. You don’t want to go at high volume times like any time after 5:00 p.m. when people are getting off work. Another potential peak time is after 12 in the afternoon when a lot of seniors go to the gym. Ask the receptionist about the group classes on schedule and if they are taking COVID-19 safety precautions such as practicing social distancing and taking fewer members.
Sanitize equipment before and after use.
Before you use that machine or those dumbbells, make sure you spray it down with the sanitizing spray your gym provides. Clean and wipe all equipment down before and after you use it. It isn’t certain that the person before you sanitize the equipment after they used it. Don’t hold other people to those expectations because some people simply don’t care to maintain the cleanliness of the gym. You don’t want to assume people clean up after themselves like you do. Take that extra step and clean the equipment before you use it and after to ensure the safety of the person after you.
Wash your hands on the way out.
Before you leave, wash your hands! The CDC recommends that you scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Germs spread from person to person when you touch contaminated surfaces or objects, your face or other people. The very next thing that you touch when you leave the gym is the entrance and exit door, your car door, and your steering wheel. By washing your hands on the way out, you cleanse away the germs of any objects you may have touched during your time at the gym. On the way out, use your elbow to open the door and smile at knowing you did your part in the fight against COVID-19.
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