Choosing what to keep inside your gym bag may have changed this year compared to the last, especially since the entire world had to deal with a global pandemic. No worries. You can still get your gains in while making sure you’re protected with these gym bag essentials for the new normal. 

1. Gym shoes and clothes

New normal or not, the most important things you need to have with you are your gym shoes and gym clothes. So you should not forget your trusty gym shoes and spare clothes. This is important not just for hygiene purposes, but also to keep your A-game when it comes to athleisure wear. Some gym buffs even bring two kinds of shoes depending on the workout they’re going to do that day. There’s the running shoes and the weightlifting shoes and you have to know the difference to maximize the support and benefits of specific types of gym shoes.

Reebok LIFTER PR II - weightlifting shoes

Reebok LIFTER PR II – weightlifting shoes

2. Towel

When you’re all out sweating in the gym, it’s recommended that you bring a fresh towel to wipe them all off. It’s pretty self-explanatory. But if you choose to hit the showers immediately after the workout session, I suggest you bring a separate but bigger towel for bathing purposes.

Tesalate Ignite Antibacterial workout towel

Tesalate Ignite Antibacterial workout towel

3. Water Bottle

Of course, another essential when hitting the gym is a water bottle. Preferably, you bring a big-sized water bottle that’s full to the brim so you wouldn’t need to refill in the gym. Your bag might become a little bigger, but at least it lessens the chance of you getting any germs from the water refilling station in your gym. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Vapur collapsible water bottle

Vapur collapsible water bottle

4. Good headphones and tunes

These days, workouts are no longer complete without a pair of headphones that could get you pumped to break your personal record or reach a new milestone in the gym. You might want to invest in a good pair of headphones that are both noise-cancelling and waterproof. However, no matter how great your earphones are, they’re pretty much useless without some great tunes on your phone.

Jabra Elite Active 65T in-ear wireless Earbuds

Jabra Elite Active 65T in-ear wireless Earbuds

5. Face Mask

Since we’re talking about working out during the time of the pandemic, wearing a face mask is a must. Even if your gym doesn’t require you to do so, you must wear a face mask properly inside your gym (even if they’re outdoor gyms, too). This ensures that you won’t get anyone sick during workouts and gives you a bit of protection against bacteria and viruses, too.

Adidas face mask

6. Alcohol / Disinfectant wipes

Before gyms were allowed to reopen, their owners surely acclimated themselves with how to keep their facilities safe through cleaning and disinfecting routines. However, this is no guarantee that other members in your gym would conscientiously follow protocol in the interest of everyone’s safety, too. Hence, you also need to do your part in ensuring your own safety by always bringing alcohol and disinfectant wipes with you. The importance of wiping down gym equipment has never been more prominent than now, so make sure you do it before and after using anything in the gym.

7. Toiletries

Gone are the days when taking a bath right after your workout is a matter of discretion. It’s highly recommended that you clean yourself with running water and soap every time you come in contact with someone not from your own household. Obviously, this includes the gym, so make sure your gym bag always has all the toiletries you might need.

8. Gym accessories

Your gym bag checklist must include your fitness tracker, membership card, sweatbands, headbands, and other essential gym accessories. Naturally, you can’t get in the gym without your membership card. Next, you need your fitness tracker to achieve your keep track and achieve your workout goals. Finally, various bands will help you look your absolute best even as you’re huffing out your final sets. We mentioned earlier that you should still bring your A-game to the gym, and these stylish accessories will definitely help you in that regard.

9. Gym lock

We know it’s an unwritten rule that gym lockers don’t actually have to be locked, but this rule is not prudent for as long as we’re in the pandemic. Keep in mind that locked boxes remain untouched, whereas unlocked ones invite exploration from other gym-goers. Thus, by keeping your stuff in an unlocked box, you’d be inviting more people to come in closer contact with your personal belongings, thus placing yourself in a greater risk of contracting the coronavirus. 

10. Snacks and Supplements

Finally, it’s recommended to avoid dining in the gym cafe for the meantime, so make sure your gym bag is loaded with all the snacks and supplements you might need during and after your workout. After all, it’s important to protect yourself not just from the virus, but from hunger, as well.

Now you’re packed with everything you might need in the gym — it’s time to realize those gains.

men exercise dumbbell