Don’t Sweat On Me (a.k.a. Use a Towel and Clean Up After Yourself)

Sweat. It can be proof that you’re working hard. It can also be kind of disgusting. It all comes down to how you deal with it.

I was inspired tonight by the man next to me on the treadmill, sweating buckets, yet never touching the towel he had strategically placed on the console of the machine. Sweating all over the treadmill. Making me wish that I had placed my gym bag on the other side of my treadmill (cause let’s be honest, I don’t want to be bringing home his funk with me).

Here’s the thing: I am a sweater. I admit it. But I also do my best to both control it (thank you, towel service, I couldn’t survive without you) and wear clothes that do a pretty good job of at least covering up just how sweaty I can get during the course of my workout.

Which is why I fail to understand the people who don’t seem to be phased by the sheer volume of sweat that is pouring off of their bodies. I get it, hard work leads to sweat. But guy next to me tonight? You can pick up that towel and wipe your face (or neck, or arms, or anything else that is readily available for a wipe – I sweat a lot. Trust me, I know that all that sweat just sitting on your skin is not comfortable).

And sadly, he is not, by far, the worst that I’ve ever seen. There is one girl who I have seen throughout the last three years that I just fail to understand. She wears long sleeves – yes, long sleeves, in a gym full of tank tops – and climbs away at the stepmill for longer than any person ever needs to spend on stairs (for the record: she is about 8 lbs. It can’t be a trying to lose weight thing). She actually shows up with her cell phone in a plastic bag so as not to drown it in her own sweat. When she gets off of the machine, the ground around her is literally saturated (I can only wish I was making this up – I’ve made a point to avoid the machine on either side of her). How she doesn’t slip off of the machine is something I will never be able to understand, because honey has puddles around her.

So, all that said … what is my point here? Don’t be afraid of towels. Clean up after yourself. Recognize that while sweating is a natural process, and it shows that your body can effectively cool itself, it’s a good idea to wear appropriate clothing to help wick the moisture away from your body. And please – PLEASE – be aware of the people around you. They’ll thank you!