Gym Bag Hero

exhibit A: Sammee's gym bag VS. standard sized locker.

exhibit A: Sammee's gym bag VS. standard sized locker.

Full disclosure. I’m a bag lady. I love a good bag. At one point in time I was carrying multiple bags to support my active lifestyle, no gym locker was big enough. I’m constantly keeping an eye out for one that can fulfill all my needs. Alas, there isn’t such a bag but there are a few that help me to consolidate all my items allowing me to handle days that I leave my home at 4am and I'm on the go until late at night. It's important for me to be able to go from a hectic workday, get a solid  workout in, and then head to dinner with friends without missing a beat.

Currently I'm really into backpacks. I have one that's perfect for the office to fitness transition and another for my weekend warrior ways.

Pro-tips:

  • Pack your bag the night before. Great way to make sure you have everything you need and cuts down on the morning scramble.
  • Keep about $20 bucks in cash on you for emergencies, for those situations you never see coming. Cash is still king, people.

Below I’ve broken down my seven components to a perfectly packed gym bag to get you to and from the gym without breaking a sweat!

  • Water Bottle: Major key alert, folks! Staying hydrated is important. A leak-proof, lightweight bottle is a definite must-have essential. This one from Swell keeps your water cold for 24 hours! Bananas.
  • Body wipes: Keep a pack tucked in your gym bag at all times! After a sweat session you don't always have time for a shower. This is a quick fix to get you fresh, your skin clean and to keep you on the go.
  • Handheld pouch: A compact zip-around case is so clutch for every gym bag! Fill it with all your beauty and personal care essentials, lip balm, hair ties, deodorant, lotion, feminine products, hand sanitizer, aspirin / allergy medication, compact mirror, travel size or samples of your favorite beauty products.The best part about assembling your own instead of a pre-packed kit, is you can select only the items you need and carry it around in a bag you want.
  • Wristlet: Carry the basics - identification, credit cards, keys, cellphone + charger - in a simple black wristlet since they are important. This way you can carry the essentials with you if you have to leave your bag in an unsecured area.
  • Snacks: Getting hangry (hungry+angry) isn’t an option. Pack a sandwich bag with a few dry snacks: nuts, granola bars, cough drops, etc. This way you have something on-hand to nibble on after a workout as you make your way.
  • Music & Earbuds: always, always have my phone and earbuds with me if I feel like rocking out during a run or catching up on podcasts. If you are looking for some summer jams, check out my Spotify playlist.
  • MISC: mini-umbrella, Never get caught out in the rain again! Find something small yet durable; mini-notepad and pen, Keep a small notebook and pen for those moments when you need to jot down directions for someone or when your phone is about to die, take down the important info you might need.

Don't get me wrong, I have more items to go like a good book or e-reader (I’m never without one or the other), a light wrap in case I get cold but mostly it's the items listed above. With them, I'm prepared for anything the day or night throws my way. Everyone has their preference of what's essential based on lifestyle, tastes and bag carried; some of these items listed may not pertain to you. So chime in, what's in your bag?