Fact: Pretty much everything in the ladies' gym locker room is covered in vagina.
This is something I struggle with each time I enter one (a gym, not a vagina), being that I am not a fan of getting up close and personal with strangers' vaginas. I'm sure they are all lovely vaginas, but still. No thank you. I die a little each time my eyeglasses fall off my toiletry kit and onto the bench in the changing area. Might as well skip the middleman and just toss a vag directly into my eye.
As a recovering germaphobe, balancing my need for exercise with my repulsion at the slick coating of DNA on every surface of the gym and attached locker room is a tricky task.
Sure, there are antibacterial cloths available for equipment wipe-downs. That does little to comfort me as I sit on the weight bench imagining all the sweaty run-off from both sexes collecting into pungent little chrysalises that cling beneath me, possibly growing new humans from the mingling abundance of lost skin cells. Kind of like how caterpillars become butterflies, only the absolute opposite in regards to loveliness.
Everyone grabs a complimentary mini towel to ease the pain of public perspiration. Yet I fail to see them as a barrier, when sinewy asthmatic dudes blow their noses into them, then slap those terry snot sponges down onto the handlebars of the elliptical machines I am waiting to use. Excuse me for a moment while I swallow the vomit that just rose up into my throat.
Don't even get me started on the deposits everyone makes on the shower floors. My therapy bills have been through the roof ever since that one time I forgot to bring in shower sandals.
The upside to this unsanitary horror scene is that all the anxiety I experience while facing my fear of trace fecal matter pressing into my palms from the free weights actually helps me burn a few extra calories during each visit. The nervous sweats, the nausea, the racing heart as I force myself to sit on the abdominal machine immediately after that furry meathead just finished a soaking set of reps on it...it's all part of my weight loss and cardio routine.
Which, in a completely disgusting way, is an unexpected bonus that is good for my health. Despite the fact that I have to hang out in a stinky, spotty Petri dish to get it.
I gotta go now. It's almost time for my spin class. Has anyone seen my industrial-strength bottle of hand sanitizer? Anyone....?