Weekly Wellness

Weekly Wellness

by Laura Dillavou

If you feel like your workout may be taking you down a notch or two, you may be right.

The workout equipment that you, as well as many others use each day can contain millions of bacteria that is just waiting to infect the body.

Here are some tips on how to avoid the cold or flu at your next workout:

* Make sure that the cardio equipment is sanitized. We all know that we should clean it after use, but not everyone does. If there isn’t any sanitizer available, bring your own pack of moist towelettes. Germs thrive in the moist, warm areas of handlebars and railings, so pay special attention to those.

* Wash your hands. Common equipment, such as dumbbells and medicine balls can harbor millions of bacteria and disease. After using these things, you should wash your hands off in warm water, using plenty of soap. If there isn’t a bathroom close by, try using a little hand sanitizer, such as Purell Instant Hand Sanitizer. Even a little drop of this will cut down on the germs floating around.

* Cut down on contact. While hugging a sweaty person isn’t something that I personally enjoy, it can happen. A personal trainer, who sees many people a day can carry many germs, including his own. Once again, since germs love that sweaty environment, skin-to-skin contact makes perfect breeding grounds for colds and flu viruses. A simple fix? Tell your touchy friend that you are already sick and that a hands-off greeting would be the best.

* Germs are carried from person to person, object to object. The magazine that you are resting on the Elliptical can carry those germs home to be spread elsewhere. This also includes things like a sweat towel, so next time, and just keep it around your neck or in your bag!

These tips are just a few of the things you can do to stay healthier during this cold and flu season. For more information, go to http://www.webmd.com or http://www.self.com.

If you are looking for a lighter workout or something not quite as intense as the treadmill, try forming an intramural team or going to a group workout.

This semester, Simpson is offering water aerobics every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday night at 8 p.m. It lasts approximately one hour and is in Cowles. You can also form your own intramural soccer team, softball team or sand volleyball team. Ping Pong, Jam ball and racquetball are also being offered through intramurals this spring.