#FitU with Phindi Gule: Exercise and personal hygiene
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#FitU with Phindi Gule: Exercise and personal hygiene

Personal hygiene is more than just hopping in the shower or washing your hands. Phindi Gule explains...

Woman exercise workout fitness
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While you might hear the word "hygiene" and think immediately of just washing your hands, the term actually refers to any practice that preserves a sense of health and well-being; see the recent Enterprise case - the outbreak of Listeriosis. As far as total-body hygiene goes, exercise is one of the best things you can do to stay healthy, as long as you get in the habit of cleanliness and paying attention to detail.

Personal Hygiene:

Some people find that exercising actually helps improve their skin, thanks to sweat and proper hydration, but a smart post-exercise routine is crucial. After all, sweat can lead to greasy hair and, sometimes, acne breakouts. Soon after you exercise, ditch your workout clothes and get cleaned up with a shower. Doing so can limit trapped bacteria and ensure you get the best benefits from your workout.

Read: #FitU with Phindi Gule: Enjoying a healthier relationship with your body

Gym Hygiene: 

If you exercise at a gym, it should affect the way you interact with other patrons and machines. Because machines are used by a community, it's important that you wipe down machines before and after you use them -- this will help reduce the spread of germs. If you're taking advantage of the gym shower and sauna facilities, always wear shower shoes (flip flops). Gym floors harbor bacteria that could lead to fungal infections. Then, make sure you sanitise your hands as you leave the facilities. If you use your own machines, it's still a good idea to wipe them down with an antibacterial solution every few weeks to keep them clean.

Sleep Hygiene:

Exercise is an excellent way to combat sleep disorders. Exercising can help you get to sleep easier, particularly when you exercise late in the afternoon. While it's never been proven scientifically, some complain that evening exercise can be too energising and actually make it harder to fall asleep. You can experiment with different times of day and see which routine is most likely to help you get to sleep at night. To sleep better, try the following:

- Have no eye contact with any of your electronics gadgets at least 30 minutes before you go to bed

- Switch off your phone, laptop, desktop PC, TV completely (on the wall), have no flashing light in the room 

- Alarm? Get an old-school clock that does not make that “second hand” noise 

Mental Hygiene:

Your mental health is one of the most important factors in your overall well-being, and exercise can help you maintain excellent mental health. Remember, exercise is responsible for the release of mood-boosting endorphins that can help battle stress and increase feelings of wellness. Doctors often point out that exercise is often an important component of treatment plans for both anxiety and depression. 

***Stay Healthy, Stay Clean***

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