03/28/2008 02:45 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Magazine Selection At Gym A Motley Lot

Your major magazine honchos never mention it, but a sizable portion of American magazines are read by people who are panting, gasping and sweating all over the pages.

I am one of those people. I read magazines while chugging away on the StairMaster machine at a gym on Rockville Pike. I glance up from my sweaty magazine, I see my fellow exercisers sweating all over their magazines. There's a reason for this: Reading magazines can almost sort of distract you from the realization that this form of exercise is completely ridiculous.

Magazines left on these machines end up on the gym's magazine racks, which now contain what might be the world's greatest collection of sweat-stained periodicals. Most of these mags are cheesy celebrity rags, which are the perfect brain candy for people who are too busy panting and sweating to read, say, the New York Review of Books. But the racks also hold other, odder magazines, including Chiropractic Economics and the ABA Journal and American Family Physician and something called NARFE.

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