Rather than preying on the paranoia of parents, whose aversion to dirt is making their kids less resistant to disease, Dettol should be marketing their new “kills 99.9% of bacteria” laundry additive to runners (and other sports men and women).
It’s something rarely spoken about, but anyone who exercises regularly knows that within weeks, or months, of buying new gym kit, it stinks. It doesn’t matter how often you wash it, how quickly after wearing it you wash it, or what temperature you wash it at. Eventually, your favourite top stinks.
I’m paranoid about it. There are some regulars at my gym who make their presence known before I see them, and it’s not because I hear them. They’re not dirty people, it’s just the bacteria produced builds up, no matter how much they try to stop it. The worst thing is, it all kicks off once the bacteria has warmed up, so you might think your kit is smelling fresh when you put it on, but after a five mile run, you go to a crowded stretching area, and the odour hits you. That’s your favourite gear tainted. Literally.
It’s highly embarrassing, so much so, that the fact I’m having to use the third person says it all.
It’s not just me, though. Honest. Football kits, rugby kits, I know what even blokes have to say about them after a while. They are not that easy to keep in pristine condition. I nearly gagged the first time I had to pull on a football shirt for a team.
I am one of those awkward types, and I’m limited as to what I can use to wash my clothes, but have found a combination of Persil or Fairy non-bio, and Vanish, at 40°C is the best way of extending the life span of my running gear. It’s even reversed some of the damage done by those dirty little organisms. But I’m still paranoid, because they say people can’t smell themselves.
If you search the internet, biocides are available to buy in the US, branded for, and aimed at, the sports market. I’ve been searching for ages for a UK equivalent. So I’m giving this Dettol stuff a go, hoping that it’s the panacea to the unspoken, but very well known problem of bacteria build up on sports gear. If it works, then I’m telling you, they’ve missed a trick.