Inspired by the lovely Ari at The Pace of It All, I put together a “things in my gym bag” post. While different items will make an appearance in my bag now and then (especially now that I am trying new StrideBox items out every month), these are the tried and true standbys. It looks like a lot more now that I have them all listed out; I promise it’s not all that heavy!!
Side Pocket — Fuel:
My preference is always to try to eat at home before a workout or run and come right home after, but sometimes it just doesn’t work out that way, especially when I am on the road for work. Knowing this, I usually keep a Picky Bar in my bag for a preworkout meal and an EAS Advantage CarbControl Shake that I can pour over ice if it’s been a harder workout and I won’t be eating a real meal soon after.
If I am in dire need of some quick pre-workout energy, I’ll grab the peanut butter GU in my bag. I discovered this flavor in my Stridebox a couple of months back and like it a lot. While I usually just save these for mid-fueling on long runs/races, they are so small that it’s really no biggie to just keep one on hand, just in case.
Side note to mention while talking about fuel, kind of off topic because I admittedly don’t always keep it in my bag or carry with me on a daily basis. I drink Aminolast mixed with cold water before (and if doing a strength workout, during) my workouts, especially a long run. I’ve had such good success on my longer runs and races when I drink Aminolast beforehand that I am afraid now NOT to drink it. Maybe just mental…LOL….
Water bottle, nothing special
Main Pocket — Gear:
Tifosi Tyrant Wrap Sunglasses — good sport sunglasses; not the most stylish shades but they don’t fog up in heat/cold and the sturdy rubber part that sits on your nose keeps them from sliding around, even when sweaty!
Tuneband for iPhone 5 — for my money, Tuneband makes the best fitness armband for phones/ipods/mp3 players, and I’ve tried a lot of other ones. the Tuneband models for previous iPhones are equally good.
Usually some form of a hat or sun visor if I am going to be outside, I have trouble with sweat/headbands staying put, and I like to keep the sun directly off my face if I can. Nike makes some good visors for women in their Dri-Fit fabric; I have a couple similar to this style that I have picked up at various places when I’ve seen a good sale.
Smaller Toiletry Bag — Personal Care
Basics: Pack of Tissues, Deodorant, Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Small Hairbrush and Extra Ponytail Holders. I am not picky about any of these, frankly, and generally buy whatever is on sale and spend my money on other items below.
A pack of Neutrogena Oil-Free Pink Grapefruit Cleansing Wipes or Neutrogena Hydrating Wipes, usually whatever was on a better sale at the time I went shopping for new ones (right now it’s grapefruit) and Johnson and Johnson Baby Wipes for random clean-ups. I really don’t know how I get so messy during a workout, but I find a way.
Some form of anti-chafe for inner thigh madness (I have never in my life been known to have any semblance of a thigh gap); currently using a stick of RunGuard Anti-Chafe I received in my Stridebox, but I am not all that picky between this and Body Glide.
Chamois Butt’r for riding my bike; it’s pretty much the same thing as the two products above (anti-chafe) for cyclists, but more lotion-y.
In Case of Emergency — For Post-Workout Quick Presentability:
While I would love to think that my schedule will always work out to allow me time to go home and pull myself together, that is sadly not the case. I have found that there are a few miracle products with which, when kept on hand, I am able to pull myself together to a reasonable degree, even after a workout.
Oribe Texturizing Spray (really acts like a dry shampoo to absorb oil at roots, don’t let fancy name confuse you)
Shiseido Blotting Papers (there are other good brands; Japanese brands tend to be best though and are my pick for oily, post-workout skin)
*The links above to Amazon are to my Amazon affiliate “recommended picks” but I have included these for your convenience only, so you can see exactly which product I use and like. Feel free to pick them up at your favorite bricks and mortar retailer or somewhere else online where you love to shop!