Friday, October 8, 2010

Treadmill cleaning

I don't do a lot of running but I'm trying to work more into my routine. It's hard for me to know how much swimming and running and cycling I can or should do each week. First, my work and social calendars are full enough already. Second, I don't want to overwork my body and either get injured or sick. My solution is to swim 5 days a week and bike or run once, usually on a weekend. It's been rainy here for a week, and my posterior deltoid has been hurting, so on Tuesday I elected to go running on a treadmill in lieu of swimming. I hadn't done treadmill running since March but I ran well. I think I prefer the treadmill over actual outdoor running because I maintain a constant pace and it requires a lot less thinking. Once in a while I even appreciate the TV program that is being displayed on the monitors hanging from the ceiling of the fitness center. Tuesday's programming consisted of a documentary on a recent MLB baseball pitcher who broke several records. It was mildly interesting. It was certainly better than the biased cable news channel that is sometimes on. Regardless, I listen to music through the earphones of my MP3 player.

My treadmill workout was 28 minutes (includes warm up and cool down at a fast walking pace) and covered 2.3 miles. At full speed, the treadmill was set at 6.7 mph. My average heart rate was 156 bpm with a maximum of 183 bpm. According to my heart rate monitor I burned 497 calories.

I don't usually sweat enough that it bleeds through my shirt, but Tuesday I least under the arms. I did notice a lot of sweat droplets from my head had sprinkled the treadmill's display panel so it was necessary to give the equipment a good wipe down when I was finished. However, the bottle of cleaner I was using clogged up somehow and wouldn't spray.

Have you noticed that the younger the clientele of a fitness center, the fewer people actually clean up after themselves? That bottle of cleaner had probably been clogged for hours or days before I tried to use it. Knowing that no staff person was nearby, I set to work trying to unclog the thing. I sat on the floor next to the treadmill, unscrewed the nozzle and played around with it for a while before giving up. The thing would generate enough suction to spray air, but it wouldn't pick up the cleaning fluid. So I screwed the nozzle back on, placed it back where I found it, and left. Meanwhile of course, there were people on treadmills and lifting weights all around me. No one said a word. And I bet no one knew what I was doing, because after all, when they were finished with their own workouts, no one would think to look for a disinfectant spray bottle. In fact, it's probably still not working today...three days later. This lack of sanitary habit by others bothers me more because of the lack of courtesy than the risk of someone getting sick from germs picked up in a fitness center. The risk is minute. The lack of courtesy--of concern for others' well-being--that's what I'm complaining about. Of course, my concern only went so far. I did not seek out a staff person when I discovered the faulty bottle. I just left the problem to the next equally irresponsible person.

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