What’s in my gym bag? This is a question I get asked a lot, because my gym bag comes absolutely everywhere with me. I actually refer to it as my Mary Poppins bag, quite literally because it’s the kind of bag that has everything but the kitchen sink in it. You name it, I’ve got it. In this post I’m going to share my gym bag essentials and give you in an insight into my favourite must have items for in the gym! This post was created in collaberation with Jack Wills.
First up in my gym bag, and most importantly, I keep some spare gym kit for just incase I’m heading to the gym from a meeting or university. We all know that gorgeous gym kit makes any workout 10000% times better so I make sure I have a badass outfit on hand at all times. Training kit wise, I love anything that makes me feel glam but equally allows me to sweat, jump, burpee and lift so the new Jack Wills womens gym wear is perfect for that. Generally I do live in activewear (oops!), but on the odd occasion that I’m not I like to make sure I have some kit sat in my gym bag so I have no excuses to not get my groove on in the gym.
Shop my favourites from the Jack Wills Gym x Life collection here:
Next up, recovery. This is a key part of my lifestyle and training and I like to keep all my kit in my gym bag to make sure that I actually do my recovery after a workout. A lot of people forget the importance of stretching, and active release for performance – so by having it there, I literally have no excuses to leave the gym without doing it. My key pieces of kit are my foam roller and spiked recovery balls. Foam rolling is a great way to help with muscle recovery. I always say prevention is key, so utilise your foam roller even when you’re not feeling sore rather than reaching for it when you’re beyond repair! It’s definitely a love / hate bit of kit but I know that it benefits my training and performance so I just grin and get it done.
Personally, I always recommend going for a hollow, reinforced inside roller for better resistance. And the dips and ridges help with deeper manipulation over a flat one. Click here to see a similar one to mine. The spiked recovery balls have a similar purpose, but are great for getting in tight / small areas and I find I can get more pressure and deeper release from them. I use the Myprotein recovery balls which you can find here. They are again, a very very love / hate piece of kit. But the recovery and performance benefits from both of them are worth every single bit of pain.
Footwear is also key. Wearing the right shoe for the training that you are doing is SO important to minimise injury and also optimise your performance. I have three pairs of shoes that I keep in my gym bag, that I rotate between depending on the activity I’m doing. If I’m running or doing cardio, I like to use my Adidas Ultra Boosts or Adidas Pure Boosts. If I am training, or doing HIIT cardio I like to wear the Reebok Everchill TR 2.0 trainers as they are perfect for stability and balance in squats, lunges and burpees. Finally, when it comes to bigger compound lifts such as squat, overhead press and deadlifts I like to wear my Adidas Powerlift 2 Lifting Shoes which you can find here for only £30. Ultimately, lifting shoes are beneficial because they can help to optimise ankle positioning during lifts, increasing flexibility and range of movement and also increase power generation with the solid base.
I also keep a lot of resistance bands in my bag for various types of training. My absolute go to resistance bands are the hip circles that I use on every single lower body day to activate my glutes. Glute activation is KEY and something I encourage everyone to include in their training routine. I’ve covered this topic a lot on my youtube channel so if you’re interested in finding out more about the importance and the science behind it click here. So, I have two different types of bands that I like to use. First up, I use a pack of varied resistance which are great for overall warm up / activation, you can find these on amazon by clicking here. On the other hand, I use a gripped hip circle from slingshot that is a much greater resistance and makes the movements so much harder. I like to use this during my workouts as an extra to fatigue / work my glutes, rather than just activation. In addition, I also like to use long resistance bands to aid with pull up progressions and drills and assisted tricep movements. These are great to have if you can’t get on an assisted machine and also helps to replicate the actual movement pattern much better than a pre-determined machine.
Finally, I keep a pack of protein in my bag to make sure I always have snacks on hand. Protein post workout helps to optimise adaptations from your training, so I find it easier to just take it once I get back to my car before I forget. Plus I’m ALWAYS hungry post workout, so this removes any chance of me becoming hangry! I like to use the Missfits Nutrition whey, Myprotein Impact Whey or the Grenade Hydra 6.
So thats the basics of what I keep within my gym bag – yes, there is more! I really hope that was useful for anyone looking to find some new staples for within their training kit. What are your must haves in your gym bag? Is there anything else that I need to add into mine?
Love, Beth x