Saturday, December 1, 2012

Tips for washing and keeping workout clothes, or gear fresh and germ free

I have been going to the gym 4-5 days a week for the past six weeks.  I have started to come up with my own routine for keeping my items fresh.  I noticed right away that my wraps for hands and boxing gloves get super sweaty and dirty.  When we are not wearing our gloves the wraps are on the floor for push ups, burpees and more, plus if you use the restroom, touch weights, medicine ball, mats etc.  I have my own mat I got from my yoga days but some days I forget it or if I keep it in my car I may ride with my friend or take hubby's truck and leave it behind, then have to use one of the gym's mats.  I always have a towel cause I sweat a lot so I use the towel to lay on top of the mat when that happens.  I also carry Lysol anti-bacterial wipes and small purse/travel size bottle of the Lysol spray so I can spray down things too.

I now own two sets of wraps for my hands, cause after the first week I was so grossed out with the smell and thoughts of what they touched that I could not see washing them daily.  At first I just would come home and hang them to dry after spraying with Febreze antibacterial fabric freshening spray.  Then I started filling the sink before I showered with very hot water and letting them soak while I showered, then ringing them out hanging to dry and spraying with Febreze, lol.  I know it sounds crazy but I have a germ a phobia and am a neat freak, a bit ocd so I am always cleaning or spraying stuff down with Lysol.  I have sprays, wipes and even industrial strength spray my husband gets from his job at the power company lol.

The boxing gloves are a entire other story lol.  They get nasty and then think about it your hands are sweating in there, then we do the same push ups, mountain climbers, burpee, crawling etc so the outsides are always on the floor.  I always notice at the gym when we are boxing how some people are pouring sweat so they will actually have sweat dripping off them onto the floor, I don't imagine they clean the floor all day after every class.  We tend to only stay in one spot for when we are boxing or kickboxing for a portion of the class, the rest of the class we are all over the room doing different exercises and drills.  I always wipe my bag with the lysol wipes, then clean the outside of my gloves with the wipes or when I get home I spray the outside and inside down, then leave them out of my gym bag somewhere they can air out.  I also have made a little air freshner for them that I place inside.  I used the Downy Unstopables that I love to use to wash my linens and workout clothes with, I placed them inside a little mesh bag that has a pull tie string and then just put them inside after I spray them down.  This keeps them smelling good and makes them feel cleaner, just smelling good helps keep your mind off the germs lol.

Below are some photos of my favorite products to use.  I love Lysol everything, and Febreze has a line of anti bacterial sprays for fabric that I find to be very good.  Both run between $5-7 depending on size and brand.  I also found the Method brand in a Lemon scent that I like a lot at Target and it's a little less expensive at $3-4 for a bottle.  I love lemon scent cause it just has that clean fresh smell.  Sometimes I need a break from floral, or perfume scents and the linen smells.  I have a sensitivity to scents and get headaches often along with skin irritation so I have to be careful what items I use.  Some of the Lysol sprays actually give me hives if they come in contact with my skin so can't spray on fabrics.  I also have to be careful what I use to wash my clothes cause Gain breaks me out in hives bad, have had to be hospitalized from having such a horrible reaction.  I use good old Tide and I have recently gotten into the little pods you throw in the wash that have everything in them.  I like them cause I don't feel like I am wasting product plus they keep my clothes fresh, clean, smelling good and white/bright.

I also have done a lot of research after talking to my primary doctor about caring for gym clothes.  She told me a lot of people that work out every other day and only do laundry once a week make the mistake of coming home from the gym then throwing their workout clothes in the hamper with their other laundry only to cause a bacteria breeding ground.  I was instantly grossed out so I asked her what should you do when you get home, I certainly am not going to waste water, time and laundry stuff to wash one outfit every day or every other day.  She told me you should always rinse your clothes with hot water, as hot as the fabric or care instructions say is okay.  Then hang them to dry and have a seperate hamper or laundry bag for the gym clothes.  I have started doing this every day when I get home since I soak and rinse my wraps.  I have a little ritual down for before and after the gym now.  

I also wash my work clothes separate load from the rest of my clothes on hot wash cold rinse unless item indicates otherwise.  I usually am a cold water only girl.  I think cold water works great, have less damage or fading to items, only time I use warm or hot water is for stain removal then for towels and bedding or rugs, stuff like that.  Below are some tips I put together from surfing the web that I found helpful along with a few of my own.

Also I highly recommend Nike Dri-fit work out clothes.  I wear other brands Nike is not the only brand I buy, I have other brands I have picked up that I thought the outfit was cute but I always wear capris, sports bra and usually a tank top or tight fighting cotton or dri-fit tee.  On cooler nights I have a nike zip up dry fit jacket that I wear, this is also good cause the gym I go to is on the upstairs level of an ice skating rink so it is always freezing when I first get there then when it is time to leave and I am soaked from sweating.  I always bring a change of shirt with me and do a quick swap in the restroom before heading out.  I have a few photos from of some of my favorites, only a couple cause if I posted all my fav's this would be a long post lol.

Nike sports bra.  I also have Champion sports bras that are reversible, I like this cause then it's like getting two for one.  I like all my stuff to match.  I know it's the gym not a fashion show.  Trust me I don't look pretty, no makeup (cause I don't really wear makeup except special occasions), hair is a mess and in a pony tail, but I like my clothes to match.  Lol.

Nike dri-fit v-neck tee, I have a lot of these.  I got different colors and a couple with sayings on them.  I love these for either after the work out or on cooler nights here in South Florida when I don't want to wear a tank top.  Otherwise I usually always wear a tank top.

I have like eight pairs of Nike capri length bottoms, mostly black, then have a gray and pink pair.  These are by far my favorite.  They are cozy and don't leave embarrassing sweat marks that look like I peed my pants, no matter how bad I sweat.  I have a couple with the cute little cinch string on the sides too.  I also have other brands of capri's that have matching tops etc, but the Nike fit great and like I said don't show all the sweat, water marks like some regular cotton ones do.

I love these Nike cotton v-neck tees too, other then the dri-fit I also love cotton, not a fan of spandex.  I hate spandex capris or leggings for working out, I don't know if people realize it but a lot of women I have seen at the gym over the years wear these and you can see thru them.  I have seen ladies in them with no undies and you can see, well you know I don't think I have to explain.  Where I work out at now wouldn't want to be crawling on my hands and feet with butt in the air with see thru pants lol.

I have a lot of this style tank top in racer back and regular.  Love them. 

This is the same as above just the Dri-fit material which is just more shiny looking and does not show sweat and water marks like the basic cotton style does.  With a tank top I don't mind so much though

Washing tips:

What’s the best way to deodorize gym gear?
With a bit of preventive care 
and the right detergent, you can cure the stench?and even keep it from festering in the first place. After a workout, give clothes a quick rinse in a sink; wring them out to remove as much water as possible, and stow them in a large plastic bag before putting them in your gym tote. Since the confined compartment of a tote can breed smelly bacteria, take the dirty clothes out as soon as you get home and wash them

according to the label directions.  Unless you wear your gym clothes home then do same thing at home, rinse them in hot water then ring them out and hang to air dry.  Then you can keep them in a laundry bag once dry, separate from other laundry to time to wash. President and founder of, recommends using the hottest water temperature that your gear can handle, along with an enzyme-formulated detergent, such as 2X UltraTide ($14, for stores). “The active ingredients will effectively break down protein-based stains, like perspiration,” says Boorstein. If you still detect an odor, then the problem could be the clothing itself. Try wearing more-natural fabrics, such as cotton blends, whose fibers release odors more easily than synthetics do. 

Hope these tips are useful for you.  I know they all helped me and are now part of my daily after gym routine.  If you have any other advice, suggestions or rituals you do please share them.  I also love to hear about products you use, work out clothes that you have found to be comfortable, affordable and like etc.  


1 comment:

  1. I like the Valuable Information you provide in your articles. I'll bookmark your weblog and check again here frequently. I am quite sure I will learn many new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!
    Cheap workout clothes