Think of the way you plan out your everyday carry, for instance, and your road trip gear. It’s careful, it’s nuanced, it’s got everything you need for whatever lies up ahead. Now, think of your routine for getting ready to go to the gym (safely these days, of course). The days of your old-school gym bag essentials are long gone. No more throwing your workout clothes in a plastic bag or lugging your gym gear in the same bag as your work essentials (trust us, we’ve all been there).
No sir, there’s never been a time quite like right now — one that calls for preparation and attention to every single last detail. If that sounds extreme, just know that curating and using the right essentials can offer up plenty of benefits in the long-term (beyond you hitting the gym, of course) We’re talking better organization, better planning, quicker entry and exit into the gym….and it all starts with a plan. Your plan for picking up the essentials, of course. Here are 10 of our favorite essentials to throw into a gym bag before we head into a grueling workout.
AER Gym Duffel 2
The best gym bag essentials start with, well, your gym bag. Like we said, the old ways of carrying your gym gear just aren’t up to snuff, so consider making a major upgrade with the AER Gym Duffel 2, one of the best gym bags we’ve seen in recent memory. To wit: It features ventilated interior compartments for your shoes and your gym clothes, plus a zippered front pocket and other interior pockets for valuables. It’s subtly stylish and low-key, so pack it up and head out.
Vuori Strato Tech Tee
Your regular old cotton T-shirt or old college T-shirt just aren’t passing muster. Sure, those are fine to wear to tackle yard work at home, but back in the gym, you need the real deal. To be more specific: You need a workout T-shirt that moves with you, reacts and performs through grueling training sessions. The Vuori Strato Tech Tee, made from a soft performance knit, is so essential that you’ll want one in every color.
Nike React Miler
No list of gym bag essentials is complete without, yes, a pair of the best training and running shoes. How better to tackle your workout than with a pair from Nike? The Nike React Miler delivers day after day…after day. With a low profile and Nike React foam cushioning, they provide comfort and energy return so you can stay light on your feet.
Fourlaps Command Shorts
Fourlaps is all about providing the right gear for you to achieve your best, training session after training session. To us, that sounds like a brand you need on your list of gym bag essentials, correct? And the’re might not be a more versatile pair of workout shorts than the Fourlaps Command Shorts, featuring a compression liner and flexible quick-dry fabric that delivers plenty of utility.
FitBit Charge 4
We’ve covered the best apparel you need to wear for the gym, so let’s cover how you’re going to track your workouts in a way that’s easy to haul in your gym bag — and wear while you’re hitting the track or treadmill, no less. Snag the FitBit Charge 4 for the latest and greatest in workout technology, designed to track pace, distance, and your heart rate in a simple-yet-tech-forward wristband.
Sony WF-1000XM3 True Wireless Earbuds
No one wants to mess with headphones that have a tricky cord when navigating the gym, right? The same can be said for over-ear headphones. The answer for all you gym buffs out there lies in these dependable wireless earbuds, formulated to deliver crystal-clear sound and workout-ready performance (they’re noise-cancelling and fit in your ears with no slipping).
Huckberry Merino Wool Face Mask
What better place to get a face mask than the good folks at Huckberry? They’ve turned their collective design prowess toward crafting an easily wearable face mask made out of moisture-wicking merino wool in a low-profile design — get a two-pack and keep one handy for after your workout.
Oars + Alps Natural Deodorant
The thing with Oars + Alps is that the product really does speak for itself, but they’ve got an even greater co-sign as of recently: NFL star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins is onboard as a brand ambassador, testing and using the products himself while offering his own input on future product launches. Good enough for DeAndre, good enough for your gym bag.
Larq Self Sanitizing Water Bottle
Safety is the name of the game — and we’re not just talking about wearing a mask and sanitizing your workout station. When you want to pack up your gym bag for a road trip, or when you simply want to ensure you’re getting the highest-quality, safest water possible, get the Larq Self-Sanitizing Water Bottle, designed to kill nearly 100 percent of bacteria in just about 60 seconds. The Adventure Mode helps you drink safely on the go, while the vacuum insulation keeps cold beverages cold.
TRX Buddy Lee Jump Rope
For your home gym, for workouts on the road, and for adding a bit of an extra punch to your routine when you’re back to the grind, consider picking up this lightweight jump rope with a swivel design for a smooth experience. It’s the right way to amp up the intensity of your workouts while fitting compactly in your gym bag — add it to your list of gear ASAP.
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