Workout Wednesday - What's in Your Gym Bag?

Eek!  It's oh, 16 degrees Fahrenheit and icy here (a nice balmy -9C for anyone not in the US) so my cycling days are pretty much done.  I don't have anything to prove by trying to bike winter, so once ice is on the roads, I retire my "steel horse" and mentally prepare myself to go back to the gym.

The Gym.

I know there's a fair few of you out there that L-O-V-E love the gym.  I am not amongst your ranks.  To me, the gym is a necessary evil.  It's either no gluhwein/sugar cookies or go to the gym.  Giving up food is always a bad option. Also, I have a disease called schlepophobia. That's right schlepophobia (I didn't make that up at all...okay maybe I did).  The thing I hate most about going to the gym, especially in winter, is all of the crud you have to schlep back and forth!  Snow boots! Gym shoes! Flats! Argh!  Look, I already carry around my laptop and my lunch  - that's more than enough.  Toting a change of clothes plus toiletries is a serious downer.

Yet, I persevere.  Why, you ask? Tis the season of sugar and booze, which only ends in expanded waistlines and elastic jeans.  I am a morning gym gal - I get up at 5am to head to the hamster wheel, but it also means that a) I get 'er done and b) I can look at everyone else in smug disapproval (don't you just hate people like that???) and assert my superiority because it's only 8am and I've already got my workout in!  (Kidding...well mostly -  waking up at 5 has to come with some kind of consolation prize)  But really, the thought of going to the gym after work and getting home at 8pm causes me much anxiety.  I'd rather be a pack mule and get it in at 6am, knock back a smoothie and get on with my day.   The key to making sure you actually make it to that 6am spin class is to make sure your gym bag is packed before you go to bed.   Some folks go in hard - they just sleep in their gym clothes, hop up and head out the door (just don't forget your toothbrush... :X) 

Now that I'm pretty much done whinging let's get down to brass tacks:  what's in your gym bag?  Show me yours, and I'll show you mine. 

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  1. Weightlifting gloves - sweaty hands on free weights equals a hot, slippery mess.  Five Below has a really good selection of these fitness essentials.
  2. Drawstring bag - great for schlepping your stuff once you're inside the gym and for taking dirty clothes after.  Also doubles as a shower caddy.
  3. Nike LunarGlide Cross Trainers - these are everything I want in a gym shoe - snug without being too tight, breathable, and they provide great support.  Plus I can toss them in the washing machine for a quick clean.
  4. Padlock - my home gym had old fashioned lockers so pick up an old school combo lock and hide the combination in your phone.  
  5. IPhone 6s and Yurbuds Sport Bluetooth headphones - I usually work out to a #WorkoutWednesday playlist on Spotify or "the Rurals" playlist on Pandora.  Yurbuds are awesome for working out since they "lock" into your ears and these ones have no cord to tangle when you're banging it out on the treadmill.
  6. Toiletries and wide tooth comb - I've got pen spring sized curls and a stint in the gym leaves them sweaty and a bit gross.  I slather my color-treated curls in Davines Minu shampoo and conditioner with a lot of slip and comb through my curls to avoid tangles and fairy knots.  I also carry deodorant, Nuxe Huile Prodigeuse body oil, a mini shower puff, body wash (usually a hotel mini) and L'Occitane en Provence Rose et Reines rollerball perfume.
  7. Nike Dri-Fit Tank Top - I prefer working out in moisture-wicking tanks; getting drenched in a cotton tee is really uncomfortable.  I have a supply of different Nike styles with my favorite being the racerback tanks with a built in shelf bra.
  8. Lanyard + Fitness Pass - I got this as a conference freebie and it's perfect for holding on to my fitness passes.  My home gym has a key fob, but my work gym has a card.  I participate in the Well On Target program through Blue Cross Blue Shield Illinois health insurance - for a very reasonable price,  it grants you membership at a variety of approved gyms on a list.  I belong to two different gyms for convenience - one near home and one near work.
  9. My Tagalongs Silicone Bottle - Admittedly this isn't my favorite bottle - some of the best features are also the worse (its squashability) but with a wide mouth opening, I can easily pour smoothies in and quickly clean it, plus the carabiner makes it easy to attach to my bag.
  10. FullBeauty Sport workout pants - I like workout leggings that don't fall or slouch when I'm moving, and these give good coverage, are opaque, and super cute.  
  11. Dominique Full Figured Sports Bra - Finding a sports bra when your cups runneth over is like the number one complaint from well endowed women who exercise.  This bra comes in actual bra sizes, is comfortable, and provides great support to the girls.
  12. Terry cloth towel wrap (with pocket) - This does double duty as a coverup and as a towel should you forget one or your gym doesn't have them.  My only complaint is that it's bulky, but it gets the job done. The pocket is great for small items like your lanyard.
  13. Slides - I couldn't find my flip flops for this post (summer's long gone, folks) but no one wants to leave the gym with a case of foot fungus. 
  14. Twiggy London Weekender Bag - I like that this "gym bag" is stylish enough for me to carry around well after I've left to the gym.  With pockets and a roomy interior, it's perfect for hauling both my work and workout life.  The carry handles and adjustable strap make it easy to toss it over my shoulder and go.

Whatever is in your bag, I hope this gives you some #inspo to work out on Wednesdays or any other day of the week.  For the northern hemisphere, Old Man Winter is here and these subzero temps really put a damper on outdoor activities.  So tell me what am I missing and what things in your bag keep you on the ball?