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Does your indoor gym smell like a gym?

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Does your indoor gym smell like a gym?

Old 12-31-23, 03:33 PM
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Does your indoor gym smell like a gym?

i asked this question in another thread...

2023/24 Edition of indoor cycling setups

but did not get an answer. for those of you that do your indoor riding inside your house does the room you do it in stink like a gym? i recently had to move out due to a visitor but have set back up again inside. i'm wondering if the smell will build up. i had only been riding indoors for a few weeks now but this will be more long term.

do you use some sort of gym stink away spray or absorbent? wondering if baking soda would be a good idea. i stick that in my fridge for similar reasons.
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Old 01-01-24, 08:35 AM
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I added a smart trainer to my upstairs home gym area just over four years ago and have had no problem with any odors. I use the other equipment twice a week and during the Winter, I use the trainer three to four times per week. During riding season, I use the trainer only on bad-weather days. The room is 14' x 16'. Disclaimer: I don't seem to sweat nearly as much indoors as other folks. The room is about 70°-72° and I use only two fans: the ceiling fan set on medium and the floor fan set on low and pointing just behind my handlebars from the side. I personally never feel hot and as I said, I have never experienced any odors. Even if my nose was acclimated to it, my wife would have said something when she occasionally comes in and she has never mentioned anything.

I think that as long as you have adequate air circulation and leave the door to the room open, you shouldn't have any issues. The fact that you open the window will probably help, too. As long as you're not actually flinging sweat onto the walls or dripping all over the floor without cleaning it up, you should be good to go. Here is what my setup look like:


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Old 01-01-24, 10:42 AM
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Mine is in the open basement, so no smells. I think a lot of gym smell is people not washing their polyester t-shirts. So I use wool t-shirts that I don't wash.
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Old 01-01-24, 04:17 PM
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thanks, good to know. although i do sweat a lot indoors i think its the same as outdoors, just not the same air circulation.

about that open window. when i started doing that i would keep the window open while i showered. once i left it open all night long, about 32 in the morning. when my wife went in the next morning to do her palatiy stuff i heard lots of yelling. and i was at work 6 miles away. i just close it when i am done now.
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Old 01-01-24, 06:35 PM
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It could be I need to work harder to make the basement stink more. But I'm still convinced that doing laundry is a pretty good start on avoiding gym smell. At least if you mean that stale sweaty smell.
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Old 01-04-24, 01:39 PM
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My trainer is set up in my living room. I don't use fans anymore. I sweat enough on most trainer rides to drench a typical hand towel. Some rides that are longer duration or higher effort, two hand towels. No smell and my nose is hyper-sensitive. I use clean bibs each ride and batch launder them about weekly, no smells from rather open weave hamper either. I use a clean towel each ride. Those I air dry before they go into the hamper. I learned way back in HS that honest sweat has no odor, and have found that to be mostly true. Exception is sometimes an urea odor is present but it dissipates quickly enough. It is the accumulation of sweat that is odiferous. Good hygiene and fresh garments keeps the odor away. What is working for me might not work for others. If not a good fresh water rinse of cycling garments right after a ride and drip dry might be better.
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Old 01-27-24, 09:31 PM
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I always open a couple of windows while the fan blows. After finished, I leave the windows open for another half hour. No stinko.
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Old 01-27-24, 10:07 PM
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Yeah, it's the fabrics that see sweat and don't get washed that are the big culprits. (I used to play ice hockey. No way you can keep all that equipment sweat free and regular laundering at your typical 1970s high school of hockey padding etc. didn't happen. The locker room stank. Same at every school we went to play. Every hockey locker room I've been in since (all my brothers play) - same smell.)
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Old 01-28-24, 08:35 AM
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I was never a skier, so the first time I went with my kids so they could learn I was bowled over by the smell in the lodge. I thought with all that money it would be clean but it was definitely more like a gym locker.
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Old 01-28-24, 09:20 AM
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Originally Posted by rsbob
I always open a couple of windows while the fan blows. After finished, I leave the windows open for another half hour. No stinko.
Read post #4 and you'll see why I don't do that anymore. 😜
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Old 01-28-24, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by spelger
Read post #4 and you'll see why I don't do that anymore. 😜
You’re right. Missed that one! I always leave the lights on in my workout room after I finish as a reminder that the windows still need to be closed. Of course this ‘system’ is not infallible.

And then my wife will leave outside doors unlocked, so….
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Old 01-29-24, 02:29 AM
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Have you got a proper floor mat under the trainer that you can wipe or is it on something that absorbs sweat?

I sweat a lot on the trainer, similar to the poster above, easily one hand towel in 60-90 minutes hard work and my garage doesn’t smell.

wool jerseys that you don’t wash - I don’t think that would ever work for me.l but I agree synthetic fibres accumulate stink more.
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Old 01-29-24, 09:29 AM
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I need to bring some spray cleaner up to my setup so I can clean the mat occasionally. And yes, I have some synthetic shirts that just need to go into the garbage. I always know right away which ones they are.

Different question, do you all wear cycling jerseys on the trainer? I use synthetic athletic shirts, but not cycling jerseys. They're lighter weight, and you don't need pockets indoors. They are cheap enough to buy and throw away when they get stinky.
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Old 01-29-24, 10:57 AM
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I see no reason to wear a jersey, just a wool blend base layer. In the past, I used to wear a long sleeve base layer in the winter, but then I upgraded the insulation and it never gets that cold in the basement. Turns out rim joists can be a pretty big source of heat loss.
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Old 01-29-24, 11:08 AM
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i wear two particular cycling jerseys on the trainer because i don't like them at all outside. when those two are used (once) i move on to cotton t-shirts. only my gloves don't get washed every ride. that is once a week. sweat towel every two days.

i have cardboard under the bike so just change it out from time to time. surprisingly i have not been dripping on the floor as much this year. maybe i've gotten soft.
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Old 01-29-24, 11:31 AM
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I don't have a gym so much as I have a 10x12 bike room. That room has no odor. In that room is a Wahoo and a 72 inch OLED big screen TV. The walls are covered in latex semi-gloss and the floor is waxed asphalt asbestos tile. So no permeable surface for bacteria to grow & collect on. Though there is now a nice salt pile where sweat runs down my arms and collects in puddles on the floor. It's not really a big deal. I could mop up the salt and rewax the floor and it'll be as new

It doesn't hurt that I also run a dehumidifier on constant continuous operation 24 hours/day in my house. So the air is ~30% humidity. That makes it generally too dry for bacterial growth and collection. The salt piles under the bike don't stay moist for long.

I used to use a fan. Sometimes I still do. But for work sessions less than 60 minutes or so, it's just not worth the hassle of setting it up. The fan & low humidity do help prevent any sweat dripping to the floor. But then I get too salty.

I've never really seen the point of wearing jerseys indoors, in my own house. To me they always just seemed a way to stifle evaporation & hurt performance.

Last edited by base2; 01-29-24 at 12:10 PM.
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Old 01-31-24, 06:51 PM
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I like how jerseys wick sweat evenly so it doesn’t dribble along my skin but a base layer works.

Love the idea of a 77” (they don’t make 72s ) OLED just for zwifting. My main lounge TV is only a 65.
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Old 01-31-24, 09:22 PM
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I'm using a 27" 4k at close range and it is plenty big. My main TV is a 50" plasma, the best TV tech IMHO. You can't get them anymore, mine is from the last range of models made by Panasonic.
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Old 01-31-24, 10:44 PM
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Originally Posted by choddo
I like how jerseys wick sweat evenly so it doesn’t dribble along my skin but a base layer works.

Love the idea of a 77” (they don’t make 72s ) OLED just for zwifting. My main lounge TV is only a 65.
Oops. You're right. 77 was the theoretical maximum between the left wall and still being centered on the dresser. It's a 65 inch Derp!

Not that it matters though. I'm still only about 3 feet back. Might as well be VR goggles for the field of view filled.
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Old 01-31-24, 11:50 PM
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No funky smells in mine. It did smell vaguely like cat piss when it had the OG carpet in it, but I ripped that out this winter and went laminate flooring. I'll open the window when I'm working out and running a wood-burning stove as my main heating, keeps everything dry inside. Besides, I'm usually doing zone 2 stuff on the trainer, so minimal sweating...nothing that even drops onto the floor or bike frame. I'm running cheap area rugs in here, so if/when they get super nasty, I can just toss them.


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Old 02-01-24, 02:06 AM
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Originally Posted by zacster
I'm using a 27" 4k at close range and it is plenty big. My main TV is a 50" plasma, the best TV tech IMHO. You can't get them anymore, mine is from the last range of models made by Panasonic.
Second TV is a 50” Panny plasma. Still looks great at HD res. Jeez the energy it uses though, can feel the heat coming off it if I walk too close and the weight compared to the OLED

This is the mat I use - usually have to wipe a bit of sweat off. Provides a bit of give too. Does a great job of protecting the floor.
https://www.sigmasports.com/item/BKOOL/Turbo-Training-Floor-Mat/9QMT
but Saris, Tacx make very similar ones.

Last edited by choddo; 02-01-24 at 02:11 AM.
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Old 02-13-24, 08:17 AM
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My rocker plate is a hard surface that catches most of the sweat that isn't evaporated by body heat and 2 fans. I wipe it down (along with my bike) after every ride and my shoes go on a boot dryer (and ozone generator) after every ride, so the smells don't build up like they would if my trainer was right on the carpet (harder to get all the sweat out). Mostly open plan basement (that doesn't get too humid) also helps (and gives me room to ride with a projector giving me a ~130" diagonal screen to ride in front of).
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Old 02-20-24, 02:53 PM
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i don't consider that a bad smell.
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Old 02-20-24, 05:38 PM
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