What to Keep in your Gym Bag
Keeping a well stocked gym bag means you’re always ready for a workout, whether it’s when you’re on the way home from the office, before work, or in your spare time at the weekend. While many people keep in shape with an unbending structure of scheduled workouts, having the preparation to be spontaneous can also help.
Today we’re taking a look at some of the key equipment you’ll need in your gym bag to make sure you’re always ready for your preferred workout.
Staying hydrated is important when you’re working out – too important to leave to chance. Carrying a bottle of water with you everywhere you go is heavy and could rapidly lead to you leaving your gym bag back at home. You also need to think about more than water when you’re rehydrating. When you sweat you don’t just lose water, you also lose the salts your body keeps dissolved in its fluid reserves: your electrolytes.
Electrolytes do lots of important things in your body: they help your nerves and muscles to function, they can affect your mood and they regulate the level of fluid in your cells and bloodstream. Rather than carrying water with you – which is heavy and doesn’t contain the electrolytes you’ll need, keep some rehydration powders or pills in your bag. A product like ORS’ rehydration multipack can be dissolved in water from any shop or tap, meaning you can rehydrate effectively wherever you are!
One of the most important things to get right for any form of exercise are your shoes! Running is one example where it’s particularly vital, because it’s a high impact activity that puts a lot of strain on your ankles, knees and hips. Running shoes provide extra support that make discomfort more bearable and injury less likely.
Gym shoes (or training shoes) provide similar support, but are optimised for indoor exercise and activities other than running. Heel support, for example, helps with weight training, allowing for more comfortable and lower squats, while extra flexibility and space in the forefoot are useful for strength training.
While you don’t have to know in advance exactly what you’re going to be doing, choosing whether you’re more likely to go for a spontaneous outdoor run or a class in a gym will mean you don’t have to carry two sets of shoes around with you.
A change of clothes is always important to have in your gym bag, and will likely make up the majority of your carry-weight. A couple of pairs of shorts and t-shirts and spare work shirts will mean you’re ready for any eventuality!