If you’re visiting a gym for the first time, knowing what to pack in your bag can seem extremely overwhelming.

Even if you’re a gym veteran, knowing what to pack may not be as straightforward as it seems.

It’s easy to think there are only a few items that you really need to think about bringing to the gym, but when you really sit down to think about it, you might surprise yourself.

To help you come up with a checklist of items you absolutely must have in your gym bag on your next exercising venture, we’ve create our essentials list to help you.

Water Bottle

One of the most important things to remember while exercising is to stay hydrated.

When you’re working out, you’ll sweat, and it’s important to replenish your supplies to avoid becoming fatigued or dehydrated.

Lots of gyms will sell disposable water bottles in their vending machines, but do you really want to be contributing to the build up of one-use plastics when you could buy a reusable water bottle instead?

There are many reusable bottles on the market, but our favourite for the gym is the Kool8 stainless steel water bottle. It will keep cold water cold for up to 24 hours, or warm beverages warm for up to 12 hours.

Even better is that, if you purchase this, 20% of the profit will go towards delivering clean water to underprivileged regions in the world.

This means that you can do a good deed and feel good about others while also benefiting yourself at the same time. What more could you ask for?

Protein

It’s likely you’ll be feeling slightly hungry after you finish a workout, but you don’t want to ruin the hard work you’ve just put in by buying a takeout, or something equally as unhealthy.

For that reason, we recommend packing a protein-heavy snack.

Not only will this help to curb your hunger, but it will also help with repairing your muscles faster, speeding up recovery times and helping you with a bulk diet.

If you’re planning to stop for lunch afterwards, packing a meal containing whole-wheat pasta and chicken might be a good idea.

For on the go, however, we recommend including a few protein bars of your choosing.

Our favourites are Quest Bars, which come in several different flavours to suit everyone’s tastes—even if you have a sweet tooth!

Headphones

I don’t know about you, but for us, there’s nothing worse than arriving at the gym and realizing we’ve forgotten our headphones.

Sure, many gyms supply high energy music to keep the motivation high, but nothing beats having your own workout playlist in your ears, does it?

Our favourite headphones are these Beats Powerbeats 3, which are wireless and extremely powerful, blocking out the outside world so you can focus completely on your workout.

Cleansing Wipes

Cleansing wipes are a godsend for women who are visiting the gym straight after finishing work, allowing you to remove the leftovers of that day’s makeup before it has the chance to run down your face while you’re exercising.

Even if you don’t wear makeup, however, cleansing wipes can provide you with that refreshing relief you’re looking for after a sweaty workout.

If you don’t have time for a shower, or aren’t one to enjoy communal showering facilities, then having these in your bag provides you with a great opportunity to feel clean until you can get to your shower at home.

We like Elf’s post-workout cleansing body wipes, and they come in at a bargain for just $3 a pack!

Deodorant

Let’s be honest for a minute and admit that nobody smells good after a workout.

For this reason, having a good deodorant on hand is an absolute must. Whether you apply it before your workout for piece of mind, or after your shower to feel refreshed and clean, you cannot leave this item out of your gym essentials bag.

One of our current favourites is this natural tea tree and lavender deodorant. It might be natural, but it sure does work!

Sliders / Flipflops

If you’re going to be using the communal showers at your gym, putting some sliders or flip flops in your gym bag is essential.

We all like to think these places are clean, but cleaners aren’t around 24/7, and it’s worth trying to protect yourself from whatever germs remain on the floor as possible.

These aren’t just good for those who’re planning to shower at the gym, however.

It’s also great for that post-workout changing period, where you may not be in your post-workout shoes but don’t want to put your feet on the changing room floor.

We like the Duramo Slides from Adidas, but if you don’t want to treat yourself to something a little more expensive, basic flip flops will do!

Towel

You might think bringing a towel to the gym is self-explanatory, but you’d be surprised how many people forget this one item.

The thought of being caught short when you’re about to get in the shower, or even once you’ve just had one and are looking for your towel, is probably something you don’t want to dwell on.

Many gyms will sell them, sure, but they’re often overpriced and not fit for purpose.

It’s for this reason that we recommend tucking one of your towels from home into your gym bag, and switching it up regularly to make sure germs and damp don’t have the chance to spread!

Conclusion

So there we have it; here is everything you need for your next visit to the gym to ensure your next workout is as successful as it possibly can be.

You might be sat there thinking you’ll remember this list, or that you’ve been going to the gym for so long that you don’t need it, but we recommend you save it somewhere.

Trust us, you’ll thank us when you go to the gym and don’t have to worry about the importance of the item you’ve forgotten on that day!