Problem: Cardio equipment like stationary bikes, elliptical machines, and treadmills are crawling with germs. Research published in the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine found bacteria and viruses on 51 percent of the cardio equipment tested for the study. The most prevalent virus on gym equipment? Rhinovirus, which is the cause of the common cold. A separate study conducted at New York University Hospital found staph aureus, klebsiella (pneumonia, UTIs), enterobacter (skin and respiratory tract infections), and E. coli on frequently used gym equipment. (On an exercise bike alone, the study found multiple viruses, some of which are responsible for both staph and yeast infection.)
Solution: Make sure you wipe down cardio equipment before using any machine. Who knows if the person who used the machine before you cleaned it or if they were thorough. Also, lay a towel down on any seat or bench your body comes into contact with. Be careful to not to touch your face while working out in the gym because it will help reduce any transmission of viruses, and, as a courtesy to fellow gym goers wipe down any equipment after use.