February 27, 2021

cruciforme

travel, Always a step ahead

Things To Help Make Fitness Routines More Exciting

20 min read

Level up your sweat session with weighted bangles, punching bag sets, and more exercise gear.

We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

1.

A pack of dumbbell exercise cards so you can mix up your strength training routine with planks, push-ups, and burpees galore. You’ll never know what’s coming up next in the deck and your arms, legs, and core will be like “hello, where have you been all my life?”


Amazon, Amazon / Via amazon.com

Promising review: “I bought these to get some new ideas to mix up my gym routine. I got a lot of new ideas from these cards. Some were reminders of ones I already know, but there are a bunch of really interesting ones that I’ve been mixing in. The countless combinations you can create is making my workouts more fun and motivating.” —Paisley

Get it from Amazon for $19.97 (available in three volumes, also available in bodyweight exercises).

2.

A Nintendo Ring Fit Adventure game because you can high-knee, jog, and sprint through a fantasy world where you exercise to defeat enemies. With an interactive Ring-Con and leg strap, you’ll complete different movements to jump over obstacles and fire projectiles in the game. This could be a fun alternative to walking around your block for the hundredth time.


Target

This set comes with a Ring-Con, leg strap, and RingFit Adventure game that’s compatible with the Nintendo Switch. Just place a JoyCon in both the leg strap and Ring-Con (both track your movements throughout the game!), slip on the leg strap, hold the Ring-Con, and you’re good to start playing!

BuzzFeed editor Heather Braga loves using this game to work out and said, “I’ve also been using this game as a way to supplement my trips to the gym. This may seem like a childish adventure from Nintendo, but JEEZ within moments I’m sweating my butt off. To move through each level you have to physically run in place and each time you ‘battle’ an enemy you have to do 15 reps of an exercise of your choosing. It’s so fun I don’t realize I’m working out until the game reminds me to take a break and have some water.” Read more of her full Nintendo Ring Fit Adventure game review.

Get it from Amazon for $69.88 or Target for $79.99.

3.

A Pilates ball to help you ~get to the core~ of balance and flexibility challenges. Crunches aren’t the only exercises you can do with this small tool: It’ll engage your abs during bridges, leg lifts, and spider triceps and make your core routine a little less boring.


Amazon

Promising review: “Love how easy, portable, and affordable these are. They’re super easy to inflate by removing the air plug from the ball, then blowing air quickly for a few seconds to inflate. They’re very portable and sturdy for doing Pilates, yoga, and barre. It’s upped my Pilates practice as a great prop!” —Cammy Zhang

Get a two-pack from Amazon for $10.99+ (available in three color combinations).

4.

A compact, collapsible treadmill with walking *and* running modes. Thanks to an adjustable riser, you can walk up to 2.5 mph with the handrail down and run up to 7 mph with the handrail up. Interval training will also be a breeze because you’l get to switch speeds without keeping the same pace.


Amazon / Via amazon.com, Amazon / Via amazon.com

This treadmill is also foldable, so you can easily grab it from under a bed or couch when you want to exercise!

Promising review: “This treadmill is awesome! I have a standing desk and while standing is great, I just am not finding the time or motivation to go out and exercise lately. This treadmill works great under my desk, and when I’m not working my wife can raise my desk a bit higher, put the arm up and she can run on it at high speed (arm down it goes from 0.1 to 4 mph, with the arm up it goes from 0.1 to 12 mph). I teach online classes from my desk and I walk at 1.7 mph while teaching.” —Amazon Customer

Get it from Amazon for $459.99+ (available in six colors).

5.

A Ubarre weight that’ll add a little more oomph to your Pilates session and double up as a chic piece of home decor. Use it while you do lunges, twists, and more toning exercises.


Equipt

Equipt is a woman-founded small brand known for their pretty and functional exercise equipment. You’ll find weighted bars, wrist weights, and more gear that’ll help tone your body and look great in your workout space.

Promising review: “Ubarre is wild! It targets every area of your body. I have been using it daily and have had the best workout in seven years. I cannot believe how quickly it tones your body.” —Ubarre Customer

Get it from Equipt for $129+ (available in two weights) or from Bandier for $129 (only available in black in 4 lbs).

6.

A pair of patterned leggings so gorgeous, you’ll forget you’re getting dressed to ~work up a sweat~. In addition to a vibrant red, green, and blue design, you’ll love the comfy elastic waistband and overlock seams that’ll provide comfort *and* feel great for cardio or strength training sessions.


Rochelle Porter Design/Etsy

Get the matching bra to complete the look!

Rochelle Porter Design is a Black woman-owned fashion brand that’s known for their bold print clothes. If your activewear wardrobe needs a pop of color, you’ll find gorgeous bike shorts, bras, and leggings that’ll elevate your gym OOTD.

Promising review: “These leggings are so soft! The quality is great and they are super comfortable. I would say they are light- to mid-weight and have been wearing them on hot summer days without issue!” —Etsy Customer

Get them from Rochelle Porter Design on Etsy for $69 (available in sizes 2XL–6XL).

7.

Resistance bands that’ll give your legs and butt one heck of a workout and wake up major muscles. Challenge yourself with five resistance bands levels while you do squats, leg raises, and lunges on a mat. If you’re bored with your current lower body circuit, these bands will make you ~feel the burn~ in minutes.


Amazon / Via amazon.com, Amazon

They come in five resistance levels (X-Light, Light, Medium, Heavy, and X-Heavy).

Promising reviews: “I love these things for a quick workout in my apartment when I don’t feel like going out. They’re surprisingly impactful. It’s also fun to add a new twist to my boring old workout routine.” —Christopher C. Allen, Esq.

“Great product! So easy to use and came faster than I expected. Bands come in extra light, light, medium, heavy, and extra heavy, so it’s perfect for any kind of workout! I used the extra heavy bands right above my knees and walked in a squat position and let me tell you: I AM SORE. This product is so versatile and I am so excited to hit the gym with these and they’re great for at home workouts.” —Amazon Customer

Get a set of five from Amazon for $9.98 (also available in a pink set).

8.

A cool strength training device with fun challenges that’ll target your arms and legs. This small gadget, which syncs with the free Activ5 Trainer App helps you complete low-impact isometric movements (like chest presses and pistol sumo squats) that’ll shake up your exercise routine.
Just place it in your hand or under your foot, launch the app, and get movin’.


activbody_/Instagram / Via instagram.com

Promising review: “I received my Activ5 a few weeks ago and I have been using it regularly at work, home, and when traveling. I try to make it to the gym at least two to three times per week, but this is a great supplemental way to get a quick workout in when I can’t get to the gym. The games are entertaining and the workouts are approachable but challenging. It’s working out muscle groups I have neglected before!” —Dan B.

Get it from Amazon for $109.

9.

Push-up bars because you can still put your deltoids and triceps to work without straining your wrists. When you exercise on your carpet, patio, or hardwood floor, your bod will be aligned and you can challenge yourself to stay in push-up position a little longer in between sets.


N1Fit/ Amazon

Promising review: “This product is a very cool concept ! Using push-up bars elevates your game and push-ups, literally making for a wider range of motion and more muscle movement! I find it brilliant to work up to a full range push-up with push up bars by starting on your knees and working up to straight legged push-ups! You can also use for tricep dips and they allow more range of motion then just trying to do normal tricep dips on the ground ” —DRAC

Get them from Amazon for $10.99.

10.

A matching leggings and bra set that’ll solve the problem of “I don’t know what the heck to wear” before you work out. This outfit will get you excited for your next virtual class, because you’ll look so cute *and* you won’t feel too sweaty, thanks to quick-drying fabric.


Amazon / Via amazon.com, Amazon / Via amazon.com

Purple isn’t the only color you can get in this set! It’s also available in red, mint green, and more pretty hues.

Promising review: “Wow this is my new favorite workout set!! It’s stretchy but also form-fitting! The material is great quality and the leggings stay in place when you run! I’m going to order in every color!” —Alex Rinna

Get them from Amazon for $29.99 (available in sizes S–L and 12 colors).

11.

A speed jump rope to improve your double-unders and give you a *full-body* (yes, we’re talking arms, legs, back, and feet here) workout. All you need are a couple of sets (for example, you might want to try three sets of 30 jumps) and you’ll ~work up a sweat~ faster than you can say c-a-r-d-i-o.


Amazon, Amazon / Via amazon.com

This rope adjusts according to your height, making it easy to nail the perfect jump. Concerned about moving out of bounds too? No worries, because this gem has a sturdy rope swing that’ll help you stay in the same spot during reps.

FYI, this jump rope is *only* designed for indoor use. If you want to exercise on your sidewalk or driveway, this jump rope works great for asphalt and cement surfaces.

Promising review: “Delivery was very quick. This rope is amazing. If you follow the directions properly for sizing you will be mastering double-unders in no time. Seriously, after I sized the rope properly for my height I was able to string together about 20 unbroken double-unders within 10 minutes of practicing.” —BRS

Get it from Amazon for $18.18 (available in nine colors).

12.

A Core Max 2.0 because you’ll get to work your abs, arms, and legs with this versatile piece of equipment. You can do crunches, push-ups, and more bodyweight movements with this compact device that’ll help you exercise indoors.


Amazon

Promising review: “I didn’t expect to love this thing so much! It has a spring like resistance on the foam back, so it makes working out — especially curl-ups — fun and if you put it on the tallest setting, the sit ups get so easy that you don’t even realize how much you are working out! Did this for half and hour while watching TV and didn’t have to take any breaks. I love this thing.” —Amazon Customer

Get it from Amazon for $69.99.

13.

An Obé Fitness membership that’ll elevate your home fitness routine. Choose from barre, cardio boxing, HIIT, sculpt, yoga, and more engaging workouts that’ll make your living room feel like a live studio. You can participate in express classes (they’re only 10 minutes each!) or 28-minute live classes if you have more time.


Obé Fitness, Abby Kass/BuzzFeed

As a web and app-based service, Obé Fitness can be accessed on a computer, smartphone, or TV. (Tip: Having a wider screen does make taking classes and watching instructors a bit easier.) Just use an HDMI cable to connect to your TV or launch Obé from the app using Airplay, Apple TV, or Chromecast.

My colleague Abby Kass uses Obé Fitness and said, “I started using Obé and then went back to my old at-home workout and switched back to Obé again because I realized I liked it so much. The classes are a great workout, yet the 28 minutes go by super fast, and I’m not counting down the minutes till it’s over. You don’t technically need any equipment for the workout, but you can level up with simple equipment, such as a resistance loop, weights, and sliders.” Read more of her Obé Fitness review.

Get it from Obé Fitness for $27+ (monthly, quarterly, and annual memberships available).

14.

A pair of beautiful fitness gloves to slip on for strength training sessions. Your hands will be protected (no more blisters and calluses, yay!) and you can finally lift kettlebells and dumbbells with a better grip, which is incredibly helpful when you’re trying to challenge yourself with heavier weights.


Powerhandz

Powerhandz is a Dallas-based company focused on athletic training and rehabilitation products. Co-founded by entrepreneurs Danyel Surrency Jones and Darnell Jones, Powerhandz aims to help fitness enthusiasts improve their workouts.

Promising review: “I’ve had my gloves for four months now. They offer a superior fit, help protect my hands while working out whether I’m doing pull-ups, or intense dumbbells or kettle bells training sessions. If you’re working out, it is time to invest in some Powerfit Training Gloves.” —Powerhandz Customer

Get them from Powerhandz for $42.99 (available in sizes S–XXXL).

15.

A TRX Suspension Training System for doing push-ups, pull-ups, planks, and more bodyweight moves in basically any location. All you need to do is anchor it to a beam, lay down a mat, and give yourself a couple of feet to move around. It’s so easy to set up and lets you exercise on the spot.


Amazon

It comes with a suspension training strap, indoor/outdoor anchors, two workout guides, a training poster, and a mesh bag. Plus, it only weighs one pound, so it won’t be too heavy to carry if you need to switch locations.

Promising review: “I don’t always have the time/inclination to go to the gym, and having this at home allows me to get in a proper workout without leaving the house. It’s just a fun way to try new things and use muscles that you wouldn’t be able to otherwise. I can’t do pistol squats in real life, but I can with this thing! It’s incredibly easy to use and to adjust.” —Cersar

Get it from Amazon for $129.95 (available in two colors).

16.

A sports bra that doubles up as a chic, asymmetrical top (woot!). You’ll look so stylish in this supportive cocoon, which goes with basically every type of workout leggings or bike shorts. Plus, it won’t dig into your shoulders, cause chafing, or feel too tight while you’re doing barre, Pilates, or yoga.


Girlfriend Collective

Promising review: “I have been looking for a one shoulder bra/crop top for a minute and this is absolutely perfect. It fits so well, has great coverage, and it’s way more support than I would expect from a one shoulder. I wouldn’t do high impact cardio in it, but genuinely good for yoga or even lifting. 10/10 would recommend.” —Girlfriend Collective Customer

Get it from Girlfriend Collective for $38 (available in sizes XS–5XL and three colors).

17.

An interactive Plankboard so you can hit all your key body areas (think core, legs, arms, and back) and boost your balance abilities while you play games on your smart TV or phone. You’ll be so dang good at planks in no time.


Amazon

Promising review: “I love it! The design is clean and simple. The games are basic, but still keep me in a plank longer than normal. I like the workout part, basically 30-second intervals of different exercises, you pick how many 30-second segments you want to do at a time. There is a daily challenge too. I would be bored to tears after one 40-second regular plank, I do over six minutes plus at each session on this and you really feel it strengthening your core.” —Amazon Customer

Get it from Amazon for $119.

18.

Core sliders for days when you want to give your abs the ultimate treatment. Your transverse abdominis and obliques will be *on fire* after using these helpers for planks, push-ups, and mountain climbers.


Amazon / Via amazon.com, Amazon / Via amazon.com

Promising review: “These gliding disc core sliders have been working out great! They are definitely taking my workouts to a new level and making me use my core like never before! You can definitely feel the burn while working out with them and target muscles that don’t normally get as much attention!” —Coleen

Get them from Amazon for $8.95+ (available in five colors).

19.

A punching bag set so you can do a fast workout that’ll get your arms in great shape *and* help you relieve some stress. It even comes with gloves, so you can easily create your own boxing setup indoors or outdoors, and pretend like you’re the star of your very own Rocky.


Amazon / Via amazon.com, Amazon / Via amazon.com

Promising review: “This boxing machine is durable. It took me literally seven minutes to put together, it was so quick and easy. Gloves are an awesome added bonus. They are durable and comfy as well. This is a great buy for people who are looking for a nice workout but don’t want the gym. I live in an apartment. My neighbors can’t hear it below me so overall I say this is good quality for the price.” —Brittany L.

Get it from Amazon for $53.75+ (also available in a heavy duty set).

20.

An ~ohmazing~ mat to take your yoga practice to the next level. It has a pretty pink and purple design, a 3.5mm-thick base to help prevent slipping, and a grippy microsuede top layer that’ll withstand sweat while you flow from pose to pose.


CultureFit Clothing

CultureFit Clothing is a Black woman-owned business that creates beautiful activewear and yoga mats. Each product is designed to elevate your workout with functional features, including super-absorbent material and a flexible fit.

Promising review: “I do a lot of home workouts since we can’t go to the gym and this has saved my life! My place has hard tile and I can’t feel *anything* through the endless burpees, crunches, or planks! It’s also super easy to clean and store *and* it makes for a cute IG picture. ☺️ —CultureFit Clothing Customer

Get it from CultureFit Clothing for $89.99.

21.

A Booty Kicker that’ll ~raise the bar~ for barre workouts. Perfect for reverse lifts and Plié squats, this fold-flat piece of equipment is durable as hell thanks to gripping rubber feet and a steel construction design. If you’re over using a chair to work your glutes and inner thighs, this gem will be a big help.


Amazon, Amazon / Via amazon.com

Need weights during your next barre session? No problem, because this bar comes with six dumbbell racks at the bottom that’ll fit 1-pound, 2-pound, and 3-pound weights.

Promising review: “I didn’t have a chair that’s the proper height so I decided to try this alternative. I like that it is stable enough to use during the workout, but still light enough to pick up and move out of the way when switching between barre and floor exercises. It is bulky, but it easily folds up. It still takes up space when folded, but can fit in a closet, under a bed or even behind our couch. Glad I ordered because I can properly do the workouts now.” —Amazon Customer

Get it from Amazon for $99.99.

22.

An ab roller so you can ~roll~ your way to a stronger core for a couple of minutes. If you need a break from your typical crunches and sit-ups, this compact gadget will put your muscles to work in less time than a typical ab circuit.


Amazon

Promising review: “Normally I’m not one to go out and buy the latest fitness product. I had a ‘classic’ ab wheel I used but wanted something sturdy with resistance and safe. Additionally, I was seeking a product that would give me me a quick ab workout with minimal risk of injury. Here is where the Ab Carver Pro steps in. It has resistance, is safe and stable to use, and is versatile in terms of different directions of movement.” —Amazon Customer

Get it from Amazon for $39.99.

23.

A pair of running sneakers that’ll help you ~go the distance~ when you run laps around the neighborhood. With ventilated mesh uppers, a cushioned midsole, and great energy return, your feet will feel amazing when you’re on the move.


Backcountry

Promising review: “Absolutely the best running/walking shoe I’ve ever owned. They’re very comfortable right out of the box; only a day or two to fully break in. I love them, worth every penny.” —Backcountry Customer

Get them from Backcountry for $95.96+ (available in women’s sizes 6–11 and six colors).

24.

Printed bike shorts so perfect for hiking, running, and walking, you’ll love wearing them all the time. They come in fun patterns (like the leopard-print one below) and have moisture-wicking fabric that’ll help you stay dry when you exercise outdoors.


amazon.com, amazon.com

Promising review: “These are amazinggggg! So buttery soft and comfortable. A lot of shorts ride up and move around while working out, but these did not. So soft and comfy. I want to get more for workouts and just hanging out. I LOVE these. They look just like the picture and fit perfectly.” —Jennifer

Get them from Amazon for $20.95 (available in women’s sizes XS–XXL and 13 colors and patterns).

25.

A stationary bike because you can have a quick solo cycling session *on your time* and clock in some mileage from your bedroom. It has comfy seating, adjustable resistance, a multi-functional display, and a space-saving design, making it perfect for smaller living spaces.


Amazon / Via amazon.com, Amazon / Via amazon.com

Reviewers also said this bike was easy to put together!

Promising review: “This bike is easy to assemble, which works out good for a person like me who is not very patient. I like the color too, it sort of adds an accent in my house with this black and red color, but it is not too big to take too much space in the house (that was my worry before we assembled it). It is comfortable to ride on, enough padding on the seat, and definitely an excellent tool to work out and burn some extra calories!” —Elaine

Get it from Amazon for $309.99.

26.

A Pilates ring to engage your core and biceps at the same time. 😲 Instead of doing planks and sit-ups, you’ll get to twist, rotate, and squeeze this flexible ring to target your ab muscles. Plus, you’ll get a fun break from your typical mat routine.


Amazon

Promising review: “I am a great fan of the Pilates magic circle. I purchased this one to keep at the office. I like it because I can quickly do exercises by putting it between my ankles, above the knees, or in my hands. I can do a few quick exercises throughout the day to energize myself. This circle is sturdy, but not overly difficult to press. The cushioned pads feel nice on the palms and above the ankles where skin is sensitive.” —Amazon Customer

Get it from Amazon for $24.95+ (available in five colors).

27.

A pull-up bar station for upper body and core movements. It doesn’t take up too much room and targets multiple muscle groups at the same time. You can do knee raises, dips, pull-ups, and more bodyweight exercises on this versatile piece of equipment.


Amazon / Via amazon.com

Promising review: “Nice and strong construction. Putting it together was pretty easy and fast to set up! It has helped me out in my morning routines and fits nicely in my own personal gym. I think the workout is the best, that you can do any time, and is good to the core.” —Yeezel

Get it from Amazon for $189.99.

28.

An Iron Chest Push-Up Machine to challenge your upper body strength: This bad boy has handles that slide together and apart when you complete a push-up, adding resistance every time you move down and up. Plus, it combines six chest movements (bench press, dumbbell press, push-ups, cable-crossovers, pec deck, and dumbbell) together for one heck of a sweat session.


Amazon

Promising review: “OMG! One of the best chest exercise I’ve ever had. I literally did 10 reps and I felt activated immediately. Not only did I feel it in my chest, I also felt it in my delts, back, and surprisingly my abs as well. The Iron Chest Master is my new favorite piece of equipment. The design is well thought out. I recommend everyone try it.” —Sean Moore

Get it from Amazon for $119+ (also available in 120lbs and 180lbs sizes).

29.

A crop top because you’ll *finally* have something to wear that’ll help you stay dry and look great with high-rise workout leggings. Its breathable fabric will feel nice on your bod and keep you cool when you’re doing cardio.


Ju’Nae Fit

Ju’Nae Fit is a Black-owned business known for their comfy athletic apparel. They have colorful and super soft crop tops, bike shorts, leggings, and more run-friendly clothes.

Promising review: “I love the entire Earthy Tones Collection! The material is thick, but still breathable and is comfortable for a variety of activities. I enjoy a great crop top that allows me to get a great workout in and this is it!” —Ju’Nae Fit Customer

Get it from Ju’Nae Fit for $25 (available in sizes S–L).

30.

Adjustable Bala Bangles that’ll add a lil’ resistance (not to mention style) to your barre or Zumba sessions. These bracelet-like babies weigh one pound each, but they’ll help boost strength whenever you’re doing cardio or strength training. Just slide them on your wrists or ankles for a little workout pick-me-up.


Amazon

Promising review: “I got these for the days I am just going to Zumba and not weightlifting. They are as comfortable as they can be for wearing weights on the ankles or wrists. They are adjustable which is great because my wrists are small and these fit and can be tightened or loosened. They stay in place when I’m dancing which is what I wanted and why I got. They definitely increase the intensity of a Zumba style workout and I see an improvement in muscle tone since I started using them. Excellent product and worth the price.” —Amazon Customer

Get a pair from Amazon for $49 (available in four colors.)

31.

Blogilates grip socks because you’re ~always on your feet~ during virtual Pilates classes and don’t want to slip. They have an open-toe design, provide your feet with great traction, and are super comfortable to wear for mat workouts. Plus, isn’t the blue lace-up design so pretty?!


Target

Promising review: “I love! I have a low-quality yoga mat and as soon as I break a sweat I am slipping and sliding. These socks make my workout so much more effective and they’re adorable and comfortable!” —Target Customer

Get a pair from Target for $9.99.

32.

And a pair of Powerbeats Headphones that’ll actually stay in your ears, tune out annoying noise at home, and let you jam out to your favorite playlist while you hit up the treadmill or stationary bike.


Emma McAnaw/BuzzFeed

You’ll be able to focus on your workout, *no* getting distracted by the TV or barking fur babies.

My colleague Emma McAnaw loves wearing these for workouts and said, “These Beats headphones have been a real game-changer for me. The sound quality is so much better than my cheap headphones, which has actually really improved my experience at the gym. I find it easier to stay motivated now that my music is *crystal clear* (and I can’t hear myself wheezing on the treadmill).” Read more of her Powerbeats Headphones review.

Get them from Amazon for $199.95+ (available in six colors).

That feeling when you take your workout to the next level:


Regal Movies

Reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.

Looking for more great Amazon finds? Check out some of our favorite cheap things to buy on Amazon, some of the weirdest things on Amazon you might actually want, or read through all the rest of our incredible Amazon product recommendations.

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