After you buy your first flexible gym membership, you need to get yourself some decent gym gear to see you through all those workouts to come. Generally sports stores are pretty huge, you can spend hours, days, weeks, even months trawling through various products in store or online. Well, maybe not months but there’s a whole world of sports equipment out there. We’ve put together a handy guide for the essential products so you know what to look for and what to avoid.
When looking for a fitness watch, you want something simple that’s easy to use and monitors basic health statistics. Heart rate, GPS, number of calories burned, that sort of thing. Nowadays you can find a fitness watch with more features than a Swiss army knife. We’d generally advise to keep it simple. You don’t want Facebook notifications disrupting a session, especially if you’re in the zone.
For all the swimmers out there, it’s important to find a waterproof fitness watch, one that’s only water resistant isn’t going to keep on ticking after a lengthy session in the pool.
● Waterproof (ideally down to a decent depth)
● GPS tracking - if you go jogging or running as well as hit the gym, GPS will enable the watch to give you more specific statistics
● Basics (heart rate, calories burned, time spent exercising)
● Easy to use
If, like most men out there, you only own a couple of pairs of shoes and seem to walk through them in a matter of months, you’ll never regret buying a decent pair of gym shoes. Durable, light, comfortable, dedicated gym shoes are essential for those of you preparing to do a lot of cardio. Men, especially bigger men, can tear through a pair of poor quality shoes in weeks if they’re pounding them against the treadmill for an hour a day.
Try to strike a balance between weight and strength. You want something light enough to run in, but durable enough for heavy gym sessions.
● Lightweight - lighter the better. You don’t want bulky old clogs.
● Durable - these shoes are going to be taking a lot of steps. Having the full weight of your body slamming them against the ground daily is going to take a toll. Buying a new pair every month is going to be costly .
● Comfortable - need we say more?
It’s not always the best idea to throw on the oldest, ugliest clothes you have when you’re heading for the gym. Sure, they might be comfortable and you don’t mind them getting sweaty, but old cotton threads can trap sweat to the body, which if you’re training outdoors, could mean a long cold walk home.
Synthetic fabrics like polyester or Lycra are much better at drawing sweat away from your skin, promoting aeration in summer, and if you take your exercise outside, keeping your sweat from chilling you to the bone.
● Comfort. This point is obvious and you’ll probably do this subconsciously anyway.
● Look for polyester, lycra or a blend of the two. Bamboo is very effective and comfortable
● Wick away ability is important, this is the fabrics ability to draw sweat from the body
● Make sure the clothes are layerable. Pile ‘em on when it’s cold and shed em when you heat up!
● Fashion. Pick clothes that look good. It’ll boost your confidence and help motivate you.