Forgetting to pack something in your gym bag can make or break a workout session. Weather it’s your post-workout snack, a hair tie or your lucky socks, throwing off your mojo before a gym sesh can really affect your motivation. That’s why I’m sharing the 13 things I need in my gym bag to perform my best every workout.
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- Headphones – Although I never would’ve purchased them for myself (thanks, Mom!), I really like Apple AirPods because I love being able to use only one earbud. It allows me to listen to my music or, more likely, podcast while still having audible awareness of what’s happening around me. (Anyone tried the AirPod Pros? What’s the difference? How do you like them?)
- Dry shampoo – As a self-proclaimed dry shampoo addict, this is a must-have gym bag item for sure. I use dry shampoo most days of the week … but it’s especially useful after a moderately sweaty workout. My favorite everyday dry shampoo is Drybar Detox, my second favorite is Living Proof PhD. With no more sweat-head, my bright red face is the only giveaway that I just came from the gym. Anyone know how to solve that one??
- Shower wipes – I don’t always have time for a shower between my workout and work, so I use either Goodwipes or YUNI Shower Sheets for a quick refresh.
- No Bull Trainers – I have running shoes with more cushion, spin shoes for clip-in bikes and lifters for Olympic weightlifting, but the No Bull Trainers are my go-to versatile workout shoe. I love that I can do pretty much CF workout without having to switch out my shoes; they’re flat enough for lifting, fine for running short distances and lightweight enough gymnastics movements.
- Custom jump rope – It’s a well-known fact in certain circles, but widely unknown in general, that jump ropes should be customized to your height and skill level. It makes sense that the length of the rope should correlate to your height, but it’s also important to get the correct rope weight for your skill level. I use the RX Smart Gear ropes (they have some great education on their site about jump rope customization).
- Face towel – I always keep a small microfiber towel in my bag because I prefer it’s soft feeling on my face during workouts versus using the regular cotton sweat towels usually provided at gyms.
- Water bottle – I like these simple plastic bottles because they’re compact, easy to hold + drink out of and easily replaceable if I accidentally leave it somewhere.
- Extra socks – Forgetting to pack socks is the absolute worst (unless you have a sweaty feet fetish, I guess), so I always keep an extra pair or two in my bag for emergencies. I use the lower profile socks for most workouts, but prefer the ankle socks for when I take a spin class.
- Hair ties – Even worse than forgetting socks is forgetting to pack a hair tie, especially when you have long hair like I do. Or God forbid one breaks as you’re putting up your hair. I’m so afraid of not having a hair tie, that I usually stuff quite a few extras into my bag – just in case. You can always find both scrunchies and traditional ponytail holders in my bag.
- Flip-flops – On the rare occasions I do have time to shower before leaving the gym, I’m always prepared with shower shoes. I don’t go for anything fancy here, just a simple flip-flop or slide to keep my feet from making direct contact with the locker room/shower floors.
- Large towel – Also in my rare-gym-shower-kit is a large towel from lululemon. It’s technically designed as a yoga mat towel, but I use these as gym towels (and pool towels) because they fold up small and take up very little space in my bag and they dry really quickly.
- Snackkkssss (duh) – You can always find at least one Atkins snack bar in my bag; I eat these with breakfast, before or after a workout – anytime I’m feeling hungry and can’t get a full meal. Lately, I’ve also been carrying around Biotest Metabolic Drive protein (my fav flavor is strawberry!) + the Superfood blend for quick meals on the go.
- Small toiletry bag – A bag in a bag. It sounds silly to say, but it’s quite practical. Small- and mini-sized toiletry bags make finding your personal items (make-up, tampons, deoderant and aforementioned hair ties) quick and easy.
Quick-Shop Links to What’s In My Gym Bag:
Now tell me – what’s in your gym bag?
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