The Gym Accessories You Need to Maximize Your Workout (According to a Personal Trainer)

Are you getting the most bang for your buck at the gym? These accessories will turn your workout up to 11.

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Welcome back to CF’s Gym Bag Essentials series!

Last week we talked about creating the most useful hair kit for your gym bag. This week we’ll look at another gym bag essential: supplemental equipment.

Supplemental equipment is important for two reasons. One, it can help you warm up effectively and efficiently. Two, it can be used in between your main exercises to keep your heart rate up while you are resting from your weight or machine work.

I know that supplemental equipment is quite a broad term, but I’ll show you a few examples of what I mean! It will all make sense by the end.

1. Jump Rope

Bringing a jump rope with you is one of the best ways to keep your heart rate up between sets. Jumping rope is a great calf exercise, as well, but it will keep your heart elevated while resting from your other gym-work.

You can find these anywhere that gym products are sold, or big retailers like Wal-Mart, Target, or Amazon. Here are a few specific recommendations:

Rogue is a pretty well-known Crossfit and gym equipment company. They have a lot of jump rope options to choose from.

I have this exact jump rope myself and it has lasted me since 2013. Its cable length is adjustable so you can customize it to your height.

Here is another option from Amazon that is very similar in style to the first, and is also adjustable, but is slightly cheaper at $10. It’s lightweight and easy to store and has soft foam handles.

2. Booty Band/Hip Circle

Booty bands are kind of all the rage right now. These hip circle bands are very thick and strong, which specifically aids in glute activation.

A lot of people have a hard time targeting their glutes during leg day, so if you’re that person, consider using a booty band.

I have this Slingshot band in orange and love it. My leg day isn’t complete without it! I usually use it to warm up, activating my glutes, when I do hip bridges, kickbacks, and hydrants.

I also find these are great for exercises like squats and barbell hip thrusts to increase the tension I feel!

These bands also come in a variation with rubber strips inside to keep the band from slipping down your legs.

You can find more options for glute bands online. Here is another product from Mighty Buns that comes in both blue and pink.

This band comes with slip-proof strips, a carrying bag, and a card of glute activation exercise suggestions.

3. Resistance Loops

Resistance loops are slightly different from the booty band because they are thinner and come in various resistance levels so you can tailor what you need for each body part.

They are specifically great for targeting smaller muscles in your shoulders or legs!

These loops from Fit Simplify come in x-light resistance through x-heavy.

I keep the lighter bands for exercises like leg lifts and shoulder movements. Heavier bands are great for exercises like clams and side walks.

You can find loops like this across the internet for low prices!

4. Resistance Bands

Resistance bands are cool because you can use them in endless ways for all body parts. Really, the options are limitless and many resistance band sets come with instructional manuals or videos with exercise suggestions.

This band set comes with 5 bands ranging from 2-30 lbs of resistance. They can also all be stacked together to form up to 75 pounds.

This kit also comes with an exercise chart, bag, attachment straps, and a user guide. Lastly, the company promises a lifetime warranty!

These are also easy to find online at reasonable costs.

What do you think about supplemental equipment?

Is it worth it to you? What do you bring to the gym to maximize your efforts? Let us know in the comments!

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