What’s in your gym bag?

Posted: June 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

What!? You don’t have a gym bag. You must be joking. You NEED a bad to keep all of your stuff in. Here’s some tips to consider when outfitting your gym bag.
The type of bag is relatively unimportant. Just make sure that it will hold all of your stuff. I prefer a backpack or ruck sack style pack. It makes for easy transport on a bicycle and it can also convert to a weighted vest for pull ups, dips, muscle ups, or any other exercise you can think of. Just remember that if you are going to be putting any kind of load in the pack it will have to be heavy duty.
Let’s move on to the contents.
The number one thing that you need to have in your gym bag is a speed jump rope. If you are serious about doubleunders you need to have your own rope. You can customize the length and you don’t have to worry about getting one off the rack that fits. Get one. Cut it to length. And guard it with your life.

As you age you may need to get some support for the old joints. Neoprene knee sleeves are a great way to support the knee and keep it warm to help with blood flow around the joint. The next area that needs some support is usually the wrist. The wrists take a lot of stress with all of the overhead lifting and hand stand work. There are a few different versions but I prefer the tie on wraps that can be tightened on the fly. There are also velcro versions but I think they’re bulky. If you have a tendency to rip your palms while doing pull ups, hand grips are a must. They are relatively inexpensive and are easier to mess with than tape. If you save your palms one time they’ve paid for themselves.
Let’s talk about shoes. You need some kind of low profile shoe for training. Just about every shoe manufacturer has a minimalist shoe in their line up. Pick one and go for it. Just realize that it may take a while to strengthen your feet since they have been encased in foam for years.
I can’t recommend enough the benefit of weightlifting shoes. THEY MAKE A DIFFERENCE. I’ll just say this, would you play football or soccer or baseball without the proper footwear? They provide a firm foundation for which to press against the earth. They also assist with ankle flexibility and help keep the heel against the ground. YOU WILL LIFT MORE WEIGHT!

You have to have some lacrosse balls. Unless you’ve been living under a bumper plate for the last year and a half you should already know how to use a lacrosse ball. They are great for working out kinks in your muscles and fascia surfaces that they need to be close at hand. If not check out the Mobility WOD. Kelly Starrett is a Dr. of physical therapy and he understands the importance of good range of motion and proper posture while lifting. If your use a big duffle style bag stick your foam roller in there. They are great for working out tight spots in your thoracic spine or getting after a knot in your quad. The VooDoo floss band is another good tool for mobility. They are great for a hot joint that may be inflamed. Wrap it tight, move it around for a few minutes and release. The pain subsides temporarily.

Lastly, you have to have some kind of first aid kit. Athletic tape, band-aids, neosporin, rubber bands, and callus shaver are just a few things that come to mind. Don’t be the athlete that leaves their DNA on the bar or pull up rig.

You don’t need all this stuff… But it sure does help.

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