I never had a gym bag until this past year when I started going to the gym either on my lunch or right after work. I used to have the time to go home to change and what not, but that’s no longer the case. I invested in a Nike bag (on sale, of course) and use it every single day. It can get a little cluttered and sometimes there are more than 20 bobby pins in there at a time, but it has the necessities nonetheless. SO – here are my favorite essentials for any gym bag!
- Gym bag – well DUH. Get one that’s big enough to fit clothes, shoes, and other necessities. A draw string bag won’t do.
- Sneakers – I’ve actually forgotten sneakers for the gym, so I suggest just leaving a pair in there or at least in your car.
- Hair Ties – I actually had to use a bracelet as a hair tie the other day – it was awful – so always be sure to keep extras!
- Water bottle – you’d think this was another “duh,” but this is always one of the first things I pack in the morning. I can’t ever get through my lifts or cardio sessions without drinking at least two full bottles of water.
- Protein Bars – this is probably most important for me. Because I typically go right from work, I usually need a little somethin’ somethin’ to get me through the workout. It’s always good to keep snacks in your bag, that way if you’re hungry before or are headed somewhere right after, you’re covered. (Or if you’re just always hungry like I am, you have a secret stash of snacks available. #winning)
- Lock – I personally don’t trust anyone at the gym – if I’m putting more than just my coat in a locker it’s getting a lock.
- Extra Earbuds – This is super important. I keep an extra pair in my bag even though they’re kinda crappy, because it’s better than nothing. Let’s be honest, is there anything worse than getting to the gym only to realize you left your headphones at home?
- Amika Dry Shampoo – I love this stuff. I always use it when I workout on my lunch. My hair is super thin so it doesn’t take much for it to look like hot garbage. I got this sample in a Birchbox forever ago and I continue to buy the full size. I HIGHLY suggest this brand!
- Dri-fit Socks – Another given, right? Think again, my friend. At one point I had six pairs of socks in my bag because I was putting an extra pair in every time I packed my bag. I forget them way too often – and – the other day I only brought one sock. Yes, ONE sock. Pro tip: always keep extras, though six might be excessive, you’ll be prepared.
- Chapstick – Maybe this is just me and my addiction to lip balms… but I know I can’t start my workout without putting chapstick on. With the sweating and constant drinking of water, my lips end up chapped mid-workout and I feel like Napoleon is my spirit animal.
- Burt’s Bees Towelettes – I swear by these! They’re perfect for freshening up after a workout if you’re headed back to the office or running errands after.
There you have it! My favorite gym bag essentials. I can’t get through a workout without the things in my bag. A protein bar to keep me energized so I don’t get fatigued, a water bottle so I stay hydrated, and my headphones so I can follow along with my Aaptiv workouts. I love to switch up my workouts and confuse my muscles, so I’ve recently tried out Aaptiv, a fitness app, that combines music with the guidance of a trainer – this way I can follow a routine while jamming out to some good music. Each day I can try something new while challenging myself!
What are your favorites in your bag that you swear by? Let me know, I’d love to hear about them!