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What Not to Take to Gym

5 Things Not to Bring to the Gym

If you want to make the most of your gym time, there are certain things you shouldn't take with you. To stay healthy and centered during your workout, leave these five items at home:

  1. Reading material. It's important to stay focused while you're at the gym, not only for safety reasons, but also to maximize the benefits of your workout. If you're focusing on the latest issue of your favorite magazine, you're probably not paying attention to your body. Read outside the gym to zero in on your training.
  2. Energy drinks. Stick to zero-calorie water to stay hydrated. The amount of caffeine in different energy drinks varies, but you should steer clear while you're working out to avoid becoming lightheaded. Prefer something with a bit of flavor? Try adding electrolyte enhanced flavor packets to your water.
  3. A plastic water bottle. Refilling and reusing old plastic water bottles can be dangerous to your health — and the environment. Go green and invest in a stainless steel option instead.

Keep reading for two more things to leave at home.

  1. A giant stack of workout cards. It's great to collect exercise how-tos from your favorite websites and magazines, but be realistic about what you'll be able to do in one session. Don't waste time shuffling through sheets of paper. Be prepared and plan your exercise circuit ahead of time so that you're ready to go right away.
  2. The friend who's there to socialize. Workout buddies are an excellent way to stay accountable — unless they're more of a diversion than a motivator. If your friend is distracting you from your exercise goals, try to build her enthusiasm or shift from everyday workout dates to just-for-fun weekend walks.
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