Most of the time I just go to the gym with the essentials stuffed into my pockets, because I usually head straight home to shower before work, but on the odd occasion that I do need to shower at the gym I make sure that I have my gym bag prepped and ready to go. Showering at the gym is obviously more cost-effective, and easier, but I’m really not a fan of getting myself ready for work along with twenty other women in a crowded space, where you’re practically scrambling for an inch or two of mirror just to get yourself looking semi-presentable. We used to shower at the gym daily to save getting up earlier, but needless to say I decided that I preferred a 5.45am alarm to a gross public shower and that rush hour changing room vibe. I’m sure some gyms are lovely, but when you pay £18.99 per month, you can’t exactly expect David Lloyd standards!
Of course, the basics go without saying. Where would I be without a towel and a water bottle? I drink like crazy at the gym because my interval training tires me out so quickly, unlike Darryl who doesn’t seem to need a drop until he gets home. Oh, and thank god for gym gloves! I might look like a bit of an idiot to some people seeing as I don’t exactly lift super heavy, but without these my hands would be a mess. I pay to get my nails looking nice, so why would I want to tear my hands apart by picking up weights four days’ every week? No thank you! I got these Nike ones from Sports Direct for less than £10 and they’re exactly what I need for my weight training.
Where would I be without my tech? I use my phone not only for time keeping, but also for the handy (and free) Interval Timer App. This is perfect for the HIIT training because that way I can do my usual 40 seconds on / 20 seconds off routine without having to keep a close eye on a nearby clock. Phone aside, I also have my trusty Fitbit Charge 2, which I treated myself to in January with birthday money. I don’t wear it 24/7 anymore because it’s quite bulky compared to some of the other models, but I try and take it with me for every training session so I can keep track of how long I’m working out for, how hard my heart is working and how many calories I’m burning. Though admittedly, I forget it at least once a week because I’m basically getting ready with my eyes still half shut.
WASH & BEAUTY
My trusty LUSH shower gel, Tangle Teezer, Nivea lip balm and Bath & Body Works hand gel are always gym bag staples. Nothing beats freshening up after a tough workout! Makeup wise I’d usually take my entire makeup bag for my post-shower routine, but my ‘gym face’ consists of nothing but this Nivea BB Cream. I used to wear actual makeup to the gym but it messed up my skin, so now I stick to a tinted moisturiser/BB cream, or if I have a tan, nothing at all. I’m not a fan of walking in bare-faced, and nobody else needs to see that pasty, tired complexion in the mornings! Next up, deodorant. This is obviously a must before and after each gym session. I’ve been trialling these new ones from Soft & Gentle recently and I love how they smell and feel on my skin. The Hair Minimise one has up to 48 hour protection and contains KELISOFT™ to reduce VEGF, otherwise known as the protein in the body that stimulates hair growth. And then the Cool Boost one has up to 72 hour protection, and is made with Evercool Skin™ which triggers a cooling sensation on application. Pretty ideal for us gym-goers! I usually have one in my handbag too, so I can freshen up wherever I go.
All I need now, are a good set of wireless head phones! If anyone can recommend an inexpensive pair, please do. There’s only so much ‘lifter grunting’, as I like to call it, you can bear at 6am. Seriously, there should be a volume rule on that!
The Soft & Gentle products featured in this post are a PR sample, but all opinions are of course my own.