I am not a gym person.  It's a bit tough to be when I am a bit of a germ-a-phobe.  Which is sort of weird because some germs and dirt I am ok with.  Gyms though have far too many people exercising, sweating and dripping on things I will have to both purposefully and inadvertently touch in my quest for health and fitness.

In January 2012 my husband and I decided to mix up our exercise routine a bit and add a couple of classes at the local YMCA to our fitness rituals.  It's good to do from time to time - a bit of muscle confusion to help keep the body guessing and reacting positively to new challenges.  Eventually I had to stop going to the YMCA, even though I loved the fitness challenge mix-up to my routine, because I couldn't stand picking up a weight or ball in a hope-you-don't-die cardio class  that someone just laid down when they exited the class before me.  I also had to stop because, on top of overly used and not cleaned equipment, there were just too many sweaty bodies in close proximity to me in a room designed for half that amount of people. 

I am a touchy-feelie person.  It's actually one of my love languages.  You can hug and kiss me and I love it.  You can stand close to me in my personal space.  It doesn't bother me at all.  I really don't get grossed out at blood and gore either.  I can see things that would turn most people away and be perfectly fine.  What I cannot do is have your sweat and fluids flying through the air for me to breath or touch.  That is my limit.

I went to the gym after work today.  It's a low-budget, no-frills gym called "Fitness For $10".  The name speaks its premise - you can join for 10 dollars a month.  Period.  There are a few higher packages I believe, like $19 a month which includes unlimited tanning.  Which, based on that price, clearly indicates those tanning beds and bulbs are ancient!  I think there is one more level that added some sub-par feature intended to deceive you into thinking that the place was some sort of country club.  It's not!!!!  It's like driving a Ford Fiesta compared to an Audi.

I don't chit chat with others at the gym.  I get in, get focused on running and get out of the world of C-rated fitness clubs and hyper volumed bacteria levels.  If I could wear an OSHA mask designed to filter dust and toxins during major construction, and still run and not scare the crowd, I would.

Very convinced I am that a small amount of bleach needs to be added to whatever is in the spray bottle of liquid that you are supposed to wipe down the equipment with when finished using it.  What is in that bottle anyway - Sparkle glass cleaner?  It has no smell and has not taken the color out of my clothes either, which clearly indicates it probably isn't powerful enough to destroy something-something-cocus!

This gym is so bare bones that when I signed up online and then drove there to get my swipe key card, the woman at the counter gave me no information.  I had to ask if they had a locker room - no.  I had to ask if I needed to wipe the machines down - yes.  I had to ask if there was a bathroom - yes, one person bathroom.  I had to ask if I needed to know anything else - yes, you get one free personal trainer session

There is usually a man the size of someone from the show, "The Biggest Loser" on the elliptical machine.  Kudos to him!  There are of course a handful of women that use the treadmills at about 2.5 MPH.  Not sure it even raises their heart rates.  There are without a doubt a bevy of can't-stop-looking-at-myself-in-the mirrors-while-doing-my-reps younger stallions whose lives revolve around themselves.  They are pure entertainment for me!  Age will get them too!!  And occasionally, you will see a handful of people who are shoving themselves to some next level of fitness in there.  I love that crowd and consider myself to be in that group.

Gyms and YMCAs I thought were designed to help bring health, fitness and hopefully a longer life to those individuals who partake of them. I though Purelled my hands in the car after exiting the gym.  I washed them in hot soapy water upon entering my house.  Gym fitness comes with a cost - BACTERIA!!!!  


  1. And THAT ladies and gentlemen is why I don't's my way of staying healthy! I'll keep doing my leg lifts in bed...much cleaner there, only bed bugs to worry about.

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