Posted On: Monday - October 25th 2021 6:41PM MST
In Topics:   Artificial Stupidity  Healthcare Stupidity  Kung Flu Stupidity
I'll admit it. These many posts about exercise machines* are like the blogger Steve Sailer's fixation with golf course architecture. Of course the Peak Stupidity reader may do well to skip these, but this one does tie into the Kung Flu stupidity just a tad.
I ended up in the same hotel fitness center in which the story in out post Scenes from the Kung Flu Summer re-Panic - Part 11 too place. (There were 13 of these posts, written during Season 2 of the Kung Flu PanicFest.) The gyms are pretty dead now as compared to before Kung Flu times. I guess that is mostly due to the still low occupancy rates of many hotels - see Collapse of the Service Economy - Part 4, but also some people may STILL be scared to catch those unhealthy germs while strengthening their muscles, running up the old ticker and that sort of healthy thing.
In that summer '20 post about the hysterical masker telling me to put on a mask while exercising, I wrote that she was 12' away from me, facing the same direction. Since nobody else was in there to interfere with this time, I paced it off. The machines** are just where they've always been, and the center-to-center distance is 14 ft. Now that's twice the AFE (Anthony Fauci Edict) specified SSD (Standard Social Distance), so what the heck was her problem again?
Next, this bike machine has one of the quality Precor consoles. The numbers make sense, and the display is great. I did long ago have to learn how to turn off the TV that appears in the background even when you want to look at nothing but numbers. I got that.
With that done, as the workout progressed, my heart rate was jumping around +/- 5 or 10 beats/min within seconds. Now, that COULD be real, because the numbers hung around in the right range for my workout. Hmmmm... well, I even took my hands off for 10 seconds. It normally quits displaying a number after 2 seconds, but it didn't. Then, upon winding down, the heart rate stayed way up. OK, that's not me, it's you, and a good thing at that!
These guys might want to put in an algorithm for that. It's probably difficult. I'm amazed at those sensors to begin with. You want to give a smoothed-out value of heart rate, but not over too much time. Then again, you don't want the thing to be spotty. Then, it's also important to not scare the living out of any exercisers, many who already have so much to worry about, what, with the girl on the treadmill 14 feet away with no mask on ... but with a cute enough butt, that can be forgiven.
Lastly, and with the other tie-in to the Kung Flu stupidity, I see that one tiny silver lining has come out of it at the gym.. Being not one who is paranoid about germs, I have never bothered to clean any of the machines BEFORE using them. What I would do is grab a towel and wipe off the sweat, if any left, on the equipment AFTER I'd used it. That's what other people want, and I saw no reason to annoy them in this respect.
Well, the towels went away during the PanicFest, if one could even get in the gym to begin with, to be replaced by these alcohol-soaked wipes. (Dammit, I sold all of my holdings in the wipes sector around January of '20! Why do I keep listening to E.F. Hutton? Was it the commercials?) Therefore, I've been used to pulling two or three of these things from the dispenser/trash bin combination, if they even have them.
This place has them, and they were in good shape too, neither too soaked nor, worse, all dried out. (There's probably an optimum schedule for this, based on how many people use the gym on average. You unseal too many, and you waste them when the bottom ones dry out, you waste them by replacing them too often, or the gym just plain runs out.)
I like these things. If you're going to really clean the machines, these beat towels by a long shot. Those dry towels might wipe off visible sweat, but they don't clean anything. Not only that, but, though I am no sucker for the Global Climate Stupidity, I really don't like waste. I go through the 30 second effort, max.***, and there goes a towel into the hamper and the laundry. (Fold 'em up nicely and put 'em back, and you might really hear about that!) This extra barely-used laundry is not good for the hotels, now that green is the new cheap-ass.
I'm guessing the gyms will keep these wipes around over the towels, for cost savings alone. Then too, they can advertise it as an anti-Kung Flu, green win/win policy.
What next? Will Peak Stupidity fall in love with the wearing of face masks, the standing on stickers, and the jab? Not bloody likely!
* Most most of them are here with the Artificial Stupidity topic key due to the discussion about the electronics/software).
** They are quality machines in good shape, I should add. This hotel is run by White People, and any problems with the machines DO get taken care of. The bike machine had quit putting any resistance torque on the crank, and then someone had a problem with one of the treadmills too. They were both fixed within a day!
*** I suppose other gym users use the towels to wipe the sweat off themselves too, but a shower is in order anyway.