Inspire South Bay Fitness is a 2,500 square-foot gym run by Peet and Tring Sapsin. With its tall ceilings and big double doors opening to a front street and back parking lot, it seems more like a warehouse than a gym—which is just the vibe I like in a workout space. However, even the airiest workout spaces make me nervous these days, since all this talk about micronized drops and asymptomatic carriers points to the fact that you don’t have to seem sick to actually have COVID-19. (Also, getting you heart rate up means a lot of heavy breathing.)
And even though gyms in Los Angeles County were allowed to re-open on June 12, it's not easy keeping all those miles of gyms sanitized. Former governor Arnold Schwarzenegger even left Gold's Gym recently without working out because the facility allowed clients to pump iron without wearing face masks. As for me, I recently tried a kickboxing class where the instructor cleaned every inch like crazy but because the class was held in an air-conditioned storefront, there was no hope of not inhaling someone else's exhale. I left after five minutes.
The Sapsins were concerned about their clients feeling similarly unsafe, so they constructed nine workout pods for people taking classes. Six feet wide by 10 feet tall, the pods are created out of PVS pipes from Home Depot and transparent shower curtains from Target. The cubes are sturdy enough to withstand the breeze swirling through the gym from the open doors and large fans, and each one contains an assortment of weights and an exercise mat.