Gym bag must haves!

2013August07_GymWorkouts_AYour gym bag should be an ever-there trusty fitness friend and packed with everything you need when you head off for a workout. But is it time for a clear-out and cataloging session to check that you have everything you need for a successful gym session and to get rid of unwanted items? Whether you’ve got used to carrying around the same old gym bag for year or are about to embark on a new fitness regime and want to be prepared with a whole new kit, make sure you have the right gym bag must haves!

You don’t have to invest in the most stylish up-to-the-minute pro-athletic style gym bag but often a bag that is specifically designed for exercise is ideal. Such bags are made out of the right materials for the environment and what you are doing, and usually have compartments that are designed to take the gym paraphernalia that you will need each week.

While having the right gear won’t necessarily make you train any harder, it can certainly make your gym time more comfortable, safer and more enjoyable too. You might not want to include everything on the list but work out what’s essential for you:

  • Water bottle: keep hydrated as you workout and for post-exercise cool-off.

  • Shaker bottle: what better than a protein-rich shake to complement your workout?

  • Deodorizers: some people like to go without an antiperspirant to let the sweat out but keep the odours at bay with deodorant, body spray and perhaps some sneaker balls for your shoes too. Your gym buddies will thank you for it!

  • Mini toiletries in toilet bag: don’t lug around heavy bottles of shampoos but minimize with small refillables. The small bottles given away in hotel bathrooms are ideal so remember  to grab a few next time you are away. Keep these in a separate bag so you don’t end up with body wash leaking everywhere.

  • Hand sanitizer: germs are spread through sweat as you grab gym equipment, so get rid of germs before and after a workout with a handbag sized liquid or spray sanitizer.

  • Workout gear: you don’t have to spend lots but it is worthwhile wearing clothes that are breathable and moisture wicking, as well as a good pair of sneakers.

  • Extra socks: there’s something magical about socks that makes either one or both of them disappear, so carry spares.

  • Facial wipes: when washing your face or wiping it with a towel isn’t what you want. Put wipes in the ice compartment beforehand if you want a real refreshing blast of cold too.

  • Hair band/headband: sweaty, sticky hair can be irritating at the gym for men and women so forget fashion and tie it up any which way how.

  • Sports watch/timer: You don’t need to go high tech, although there are lots of great apps that are perfect for using with a gym workout, but keep track of reps, sets and circuits with a timer you can take in the gym with you.

  • Music and earphones: create your own soundtrack to fitness. The right song can trigger the enthusiasm to work out.

  • Band aid, blister block & athletic tape: even small friction burns, cuts and sores can be painful and need to be attended to immediately.

  • Small towel: everybody needs one but keep it hand-sized to reduce bulk.

  • Workout gloves/weightlifting gloves: help your training if you are dealing with weights and need to get a good grip. these can be inexpensive and really useful.

  • Electrolyte drink and protein snacks: keep something healthy to eat in your bag so you’re not tempted to snack on unhealthy food after a workout. Rehydrate with electrolytes when you’ve really gone for the burn so you keep your body minerals  in balance too.

  • Brush/comb: you might be  going out after the gym or just want a fresh, neat appearance to add to your healthy inner-feeling.

  • Sports underwear: you’re going to the gym so why you might want to look stylish but practicality is paramount. Nothing beats underwear that will allow you to stretch but hold you in place at the same time. And good underwear stops painful chafing too.

  • Long-sleeve top: after a workout you might like the comfort and warmth of sleeves, regardless of the weather outside. Even a cotton top can be great to throw on.

  • Moisturizer: your body needs moisture inside and out. After a cleanse and good shower, splash your face with cold water or a toner and then moisturise.

  • Plastic bag: if clothes get wet through sweating, have a bag at the ready that will keep them separate from the rest of your gym bag stuff.

  • Magazine/Book: you might want a breather and need to take time out to wait or recover, so having something to read is a good way of passing time.

  • Fitness log: if you’re following a training regime or are on target to reach specific goals a journal or written record of your workouts is handy. A fitness app on your smartphone might be another way of keeping track.

What gym bag essential can you not train without? Drop us a line and share your gym bag must haves!

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