Packing the perfect workout bag for the gym isn’t too dissimilar from packing the perfect suitcase for a vacation. There are your must-have essentials and your important add-ons that ensure you get the most out of your venture. But where to begin? Rather than putting you and your gym routine through many bouts of trial and error, we’ve compiled the ultimate step-by-step guide to help you pack the perfect gym bag.
Step 1: The Bag
How can you pack your gym bag without the bag? Finding the perfect gym bag for you means taking inventory of the following items. You’ll need enough space to accommodate the essentials and some leftover room for anything else you may need to squeeze in. We recommend opting for a bag that features a wet/dry compartment for your ultra-sweaty post-workout things.
Step 2: The Sneakers
To best tackle your favorite exercises, you’ll need the best pair of shoes for your particular gym activity of choice. There is a huge distinction between the make of cross training shoes for men and powerlifting shoes. Make sure your gym sneakers are engineered to accommodate the type of muscle movement you’ll be doing while kicking it at the gym (literally!).
Step 3: Water Bottle
When you’re burning calories and working up a sweat, you’re losing water and dehydrating yourself. Replenishment should always come in the form of water, and your water should live inside a sturdy reusable water bottle. Investing in a sturdy reusable water bottle is great for your wallet and great for the environment, too! We’re also a big fan of the Kool8 bottle for its sleek design. Check it out here.
Step 4: The Shower Essentials
If you’re the type who can’t wait until you get home to rinse off and feel clean after a tough session at the gym, the gym showers are probably heaven-sent. In order to be able to use them, you’ll need to make sure you have the following items in your bag to leave feeling like a newer, stronger you:
- Shower shoes- flip flops or slide sandals
- Body wash
- Face cloth
Step 5: The Laundry Bag
Stinky clothing can leave a lingering scent in your gym bag, on your day clothes, and other unwanted spaces. By packing a designated laundry bag, you’ll be able to set aside those smelly items and send them straight to the washer when you get home. We recommend opting for a drawstring or sealable bag to ensure no nasty scents escape.
Step 6: The Deodorant
With sweat comes odor— odor that can be smelled from miles and miles away. Think of the other gym-goers around you when you’re lifting heavy weights and stretching it out. Whether you prefer powder, gel, or spray, be sure to always have a tube of deodorant in your gym bag.
Step 7: The Headphones
Sometimes all it takes is that one pump-up song to get you into your zone. If you’re the type of person who can’t workout with tunes blaring through your ears, you’ll want to have a specific pair of gym headphones in your bag at all times. We recommend choosing a pair that are sweat-proof, wireless, and fit snugly inside of your ear or around your head.
Step 8: The Hairbrush
For those of us with long hair, dealing with sweaty, long locks can be a total headache after a session in the gym. Rather than subject yourself to a nightmare of dreadful untangling at home, bring along a detangling hairbrush for your pre-shower routine. Trust us on this one, it’s far easier to untangle damp hair than it is to untangle sopping wet hair.
Step 9: The Snacks
Last but certainly not least, you need fuel for that post-workout metabolism. After burning so many calories, your body needs to recuperate. Choose healthy, post-workout snacks like:
- Protein bars
- Peanut butter smoothie
- Greek yogurt
There you have it! Our nine essentials to packing the ultimate gym bag. Did we miss anything? What are your gym bag essentials? Let us know in the comments below.