Entering a new journey for fitness can be exciting but daunting at the same time. If you decide it’s time to take weight loss seriously, you have to be ready with what you are going to get yourself into. It’s good to have an experienced companion or a personal trainer if you’re a beginner. That way, you can be guided not only with the workout program and exercises you should do but also instruct on how to use the equipment and machines. They can save you from getting into accidents and from looking ignorant at the gym floor in using the workout equipment.
Before you pack your bag with workout essentials, try to at least assess what part of your body you want to be worked on. Doing so will help you decide what gears to bring that would support your targeted workout program. For an instance, there are shoes that are specifically made for weightlifting, running, and cross-training that will not work well with other programs such as spinning classes. If not sure, the safest way is to ask gym instructors and experienced gym-goers the particular items you need to bring for a specified program.
Basic Items to Pack in your Gym Bag
Wait, before you get excited in shopping for a bag to use, identify first the contents you will fill it with to make sure your stuff will be well accommodated. It’s also best to have a gym bag that has dividers or compartments to separate dirty clothes from clean ones. It should have enough pockets to put your mobile phones or electronic gadgets that you can easily access without having the need to sort through every item inside your gym bag. Also, get a washable and breathable bag to prevent molds and mildew accumulation.
Here are the things you should pack for the gym:
- Appropriate shoes for your chosen workout program
- Wrist wraps and knee wraps to protect your joints from injury. Remember if it’s your first few days at the gym, your body is still in the conditioning period and should not be hastily be pressured.
- Heart rate monitor to keep track of your heartbeat during exercises.
- Flip flops or shower shoes to protect your feet from germs and bacteria that inhabits on the shower room.
- Appropriate gym shoes
- BPA-free water bottle filled with your preferred beverage to hydrate yourself. Sweetened beverages such as juice and soda are not good to be consumed for hydration.
- Music gadget with headphones to get you in the groove while working out.
- Padlock for the locker room. Some gyms provide locks, but if you don’t like worrying about your valuables while you are exercising, your own lock will ease your mind.
- Gym clothes. But if you are wearing your workout attire going to the gym you can just pack a change of clothes for post-workout.
- Socks and extra socks. You wouldn’t want to wear your used workout socks after you wash up.
- Fresh towel to use after a shower. Some gyms may provide you with clean towels but take note that the towels are not for singular, exclusive use. The towels though clean may have been used by other gym-goers.
- Disinfecting wipes, microfiber cloth, and sanitizers to wipe your sweat residue left on the gym equipment. It’s etiquette to leave your machine sweat-free after use.
- Toiletries: Soap, shampoo, conditioner, feminine products for women, deodorant, and comb
- Snack to provide you with energy during workouts and post-workout.
What to Expect When Going to the Gym
Surely you have an idea what to see inside a commercial gym – a lot of workout machines, and you will be sharing them with the other gym-goers. You can familiarize yourself with the gym equipment by asking your personal trainer or the other gym-goers to avoid taking too long for you to figure out how to run the machine.
Here are some of the basic gym equipment that you most likely use as a beginner:
The treadmill is one of the well-known gym equipment for cardio exercise. The treadmills in a commercial gym are of a different caliber compared to the ones you can set up at home. But in a sense, both provide the same benefits of improving your cardiovascular health while burning calories through walking or running.
This equipment works your whole body and improves your mobility and balance. You can customize the setting for intensity and resistance level to fit your training requirement. It also offers preset settings but you can always ask for help from your trainer when necessary.
The arc trainer is one of the beginners’ favorite machines to use. It’s a stationary non-impact machine that helps burn calories in a short period of time. You can do 3 movements of gliding, striding, and climbing in one machine to work out your quads, glutes, and hamstring.
There’s a wide range of different weights available in the gym that you can choose from. Beginners can start with lighter weights such as 3 to 5 pounds for strength training.
Going to the gym is a great decision to get your fitness in order. If you are fully committed to this venture it’s only practical to prepare gym essentials to bring along with you. Beginners may feel difficult at first but having your essentials with you will make your gym experience more bearable and comfortable.
Since you will be sharing the workout space with other gym-goers, it is courtesy to learn gym etiquette to prevent mishaps and conflict. It’s also recommended to bring personal care items with you to maintain good personal hygiene when you’re at the gym.
Most importantly, take care of yourself as you work out. Hydrate yourself by drinking lots of water to replace the lost body fluid when you sweat. Monitor your heart rate closely and how your body is feeling during exercise to prevent fainting or collapsing. Remember, beginners should go through conditioning first through warm-up for a bearable first day at the gym.