Finding Time for Fitness in a Busy Life

Gym Bag Essentials

Gym Bag Essentials

Who works out at home? Who works out at the gym?

I go to the gym 3 times a week, Mondays for Yoga, and Tuesdays and Thursdays for Strength classes. The other 3 days, I do my own workouts at home! I like to split it up because these classes tend to give me some great ideas on new posts (2 are coming soon!) and they just kick my butt, which I love!!

I know some of you prefer to workout at home but some of you also have a gym membership. So, I thought I would go through a list of my favorite must haves for your gym bag! When I started going to the gym, I honestly did not know what to bring. I knew the basics like shoes, shower essentials, and a water bottle but there were times I would forget my earbuds! You can’t workout without music, can you?


Every time I get ready to go to the gym, I make sure I have all the essentials before heading out the door. My gym bag essentials are:

  • Shoes and Socks
  • Lock
  • Shower Bag
  • Makeup
  • Headphones/Earbuds
  • Post Workout Snack
  • Water Bottle
  • Clean Clothes
  • Mini Bands
  • Tampons


Shoes and Socks:

Most gyms want you to wear a separate pair of shoes to the gym than what you intend to workout in. I know in the winter, in Wisconsin, that is huge. That way the gym floors do not get wet and slippery. Same thing for when it is raining! I always wear a different pair of shoes to the gym and keep my gym shoes in my gym bag. So socks are a given when you are wearing tennis shoes, you don’t want your shoes to smell worse than they are ready do… Can you workout without socks? Sure! I haven’t done it but I’m sure if I forgot socks, I would still workout! But I always keep socks in my gym bag!



Seems pretty obvious but locking your locker can be pretty important to some people. Even at the best, most epensive gyms people can and will steal things. I like to keep my stuff protected and I always keep my lock in my gym bag.


Shower Bag:

Ok, I am a BIG shower after workout person. I sweat A LOT when I am working out and I do not like to sit in it. So I NEED to take a shower afterward. Shower essentials can be different for everyone. I always have shampoo, conditioner, body wash, face wash, a razor (not pictured), deodorant, face moisturizer and lotion in my shower bag! There are people who use wipes to clean up after a workout and that works for them, especially if you are short on time and need to get going! The bareMinerals cleanser and face cream, Aloe &Bloom Moisture Repair, and Beauty Bridge eye cream I won from an Instagram giveaway from Beauty Bridge! And so far, one week in, everything is great!



Makeup is also one that some people may not need in their gym bag. For me, its a must. Since becoming a SAHM, I feel much better when I put makeup on. It makes me feel like I am put together. Even if its only a few people in the gym who see me as I am leaving and my kids and husband who see me for the rest of the day! These are just a few of my favorite products! I used to sell Mary Kay and I love it, I use the CC Cream, Foundation Primer, Eyelash Primer, Mascara, Mineral Powder, Eyeliner, and Eye Make Up Remover. Lipsense has been amazing for lipstick and eyeshadow! And Ulta has ClinqueFit Workout Make Up which I blend with the CC Cream to get my base color!



This one is a huge one for me: headphones or earbuds! I need to listen to music when working out. I feel like it puts me in a good place. Even though I have been taking more classes at the gym lately, I still have my headphones in my bag… just in case. I like over the ear headphones because I feel like it mutes the background noise better than ear buds. My favorite pair is my Skullcandy Hesh 2 Wireless.


Post Workout Snack:

So the gym I go to has a smoothie bar which is great. I took major advantage of it when I first started there. But I wanted to start saving a bit of money and bringing in my own post workout snack. Depending on the day, I would bring a Premier Protein Shake or a protein bar or cookie.


Water Bottle:


I always have a water bottle. Every time I go to the gym, I have my huge 40 oz HydroCell that I bring with! I used to bring a blender bottle when I was making protein powder in it after my workout. Most gyms have a water fountain or some place to drink water, but I like to bring my own water bottle so I can keep hydrated during my entire work out.


Clean Clothes:

Clean clothes, OK this one seems obvious. But its the most obvious things that seem to be forgotten the most for me. Haha!


Mini Band:

I like to bring a mini band or two. I like mini bands for warm ups and also for working legs. The mini bands are great especially if you don’t feel like using weights or if the free weight area is packed. You can use them for other exercises besides legs to strength the movements. They are just a fun, small accessory to have along! The band I use are Victorem, which I found on Amazon!



Ok last one and this is for women. A definitely must for me is to keep tampons (or pads) in my gym bag. Can you imagine working out and getting your period right then and there? YIKES! The gym I go to has tampons in the women’s bathroom but I like to bring my own because I prefer Tampax Pearl.



What are some things you keep in your gym bag?

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Disclaimer: I am a NASM certified personal trainer. I can give advice on what workouts would be great for just about anybody. If you have any medical conditions, please check with your doctor before starting a workout routine.

I may share food ideas and recipes, but I am not a licensed dietitian. I can show you foods I love to eat which may have helped me achieve my weight loss and health goals. I cannot provide meal plans.


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