Hand sanitizer, sometimes also called by its other name of hand antiseptic, is what you go to if you can't wash your hands with soap and water for the moment. As an alternative to hand washing, hand sanitizer comes in a few variations that include liquid solutions, foam and even gel. Active ingredients in your basic hand sanitizer include anything from ethanol to isopropanol or n-propanol. If you buy a hand sanitizer, you should be sure to go with an alcohol-based one, because it's more effective at killing germs; another added benefit of alcohol-based hand sanitizers is that they don't dry your hands out all that much. Even at the gym, there is a need to carry a hand sanitizer.
Sharing of Gym Equipment
The most obvious reason that gyms can be festering places for bacteria and germs to grow and spread is because of the shared use of the exercise equipment. Because of all the facilities at the gym, it is not only the exercise equipment that is being shared that creates a form of risk through the spread of germs. It is also the shared use of other items, like exercise mats, the showers and the lockers. All this shared use boils down to one worrisome consequence: the movement of germs from one person at the gym to another. A simple way to cut down on this movement of germs at the gym is that you simply bring a towel with you to wipe down the equipment after you have used it, along with your hand sanitizer.
Gym Activities Are Risky
While this may sound like it defeats the purpose of exercising at the gym at all, your basic gym activities are risky because they enable the spread of germs, another reason to carry hand sanitizer with you there. Germs enter your skin through the normal use of the equipment as well as other activities performed in the gym. It's inevitable. For instance, as you get abrasions from the mats or the weights, or blisters from consistent rubbing or use of the weights, your layers of skin get worn down, eventually letting germs enter into your skin and from there your body. If you develop blisters or abrasions on your hands during a gym workout, then hand sanitizer is a must.
While sweating may sound innocuous, it can lead to the spread of germs at the gym. Just sweating actually encourages the development of blisters on your skin. This is due to its effect of hydrating the skin. As mentioned, blisters wear down your skin, breaking it down long enough so that germs can enter. Alternately, sweating in and of itself may work to break down your skin and alter its strength, thereby creating the opening for germs to come in. If you have a lot of sweat on your hands after a workout, it's time to break out the hand sanitizer.