The optimal gym bag is portable, large enough to carry what you need, and filled with the essentials to make the most of your workout. Whether your perfect bag is an old reliable favorite or a new gift, it’s important that you fill your bag with the gym necessities. Gym bag essentials might depend on the person—some might travel lighter than others—but there are certain items that benefit everyone.
Here are 10 gym bag essentials that you should start packing!
A Water Bottle
Investing in a good water bottle is one of the best choices you can make. Staying hydrated while exercising has many well-documented benefits. It’s a simple way to improve your workout, plus getting enough water is something we should all work on anyway. Find a light, yet sturdy bottle that can handle the rigors of gym use, and make sure it’s always in your bag!
A Change of Clothes
Every gym has a mix of people who either bring a change of clothes or don’t. If you’re the latter, try packing gym clothes in your bag before you leave. Changing only adds an extra couple of minutes to your workout and you’ll be much more comfortable. Leaving the gym covered in sweat isn’t a great feeling and sometimes all you need is to pack an extra shirt or socks.
Towel (Or Two)
Many gyms have their own towels, but you take a risk by not bringing a personal one. It’s a terrible feeling to get back to the locker room after a workout, only to see that there are no clean towels. Packing a small towel saves some of the post-workout stress. They’re super useful if you’re sweating during your workout or for after a shower.
Everyone has their own preference for how much they eat before or after a workout, but a snack is always a safe choice. It won’t fill you up and make you feel sick while working out, but it’ll give you some extra energy. Try to grab something healthy as opposed to less nutritious options like a donut or muffin. Something that tastes great and has protein is the perfect option. Make a shake or take a Fuel For Fire protein smoothie with you. They’re portable and are perfect before or post-workout.
Avid gym-goers know the importance of getting enough protein in your diet. In addition to eating protein-filled meals, it’s essential to optimize your intake around the time you workout. Packing almonds, jerky, or a Fuel For Fire smoothie is perfect for a quick boost. Whether it’s to meet your macros or because you’re looking for a healthy and delicious treat to hold you over, make sure to always have something easy to grab in your gym bag.
Sneakerheads know the importance of taking care of your shoes, which is why every gym bag should include an extra pair. Having a pair of shoes dedicated to working out reduces wear and tear, and prolongs the life of your sneakers compared to wearing them for daily activities. Buying shoes for the gym and keeping them in your gym bag is the best way to be ready to go from work, early in the morning, or in a rush.
Some gyms have limited mats for stretching or exercising on, so why not bring your own? Yoga mats aren’t just for yoga, they’re great for core workouts, loosening up, and taking a rest. Plus, you can clean it when you get home, so you won’t have to wonder when the last time the mat you’re using was wiped down.
Small Foam Roller
Gym foam rollers are often not a reliable option. They can be hard to find, worn out, or in limited supply. Packing a mini roller takes up only a small space in your bag and are indispensable before and after your gym session. Using a foam roller reduces injuries and increases blood flow, making it the perfect companion to your pre-workout stretch.
This comes down to preference, but if you find your gym’s music selection isn’t your taste, bringing a pair of headphones is a great choice. Since they’ll be in your gym bag, it might not be the best choice to pack your most expensive pair, but a comfortable and suitable pair will do. Aside from drowning out distractions with your own music, listening to audiobooks and podcasts is great for keeping you entertained during cardio workouts.
Even if you plan on showering at the gym, you can’t go wrong with keeping deodorant in your bag. The phrase “better safe than sorry” comes to mind here. During especially intensive workout sessions, it doesn’t hurt to reapply midway through. You won’t regret it.
Fuel For Fire smoothies are portable enough to be a gym bag staple for any kind of athlete. These healthy snacks are perfect for enjoying at the gym, on your way to work, or any time you need a boost of great-tasting protein! Use our store locator to find our products in stores or shop from our website!