We all have those things we can't live without. For me, it's all about the gym bag essentials. Whether I'm training a client, teaching a spin class or workout out in the gym by myself (or with my #FitFriend), I am dependent upon these things to keep my day flowing smoothly.
1. Polar HR Monitor
I know some people are into their FitBits with the wrist-based pulse tracker, but I am SO into my Polar watch and the heart rate strap. It is the most accurate way to measure your training load and calories burned.
My clients know how much I love HIIT and Tabata workouts, so they're all quite familiar with the sound of my stopwatch! A lot of trainers use their phones for timing, but I don't like getting distracted by texts or e-mails wile I'm with a client, so I use a good old fashioned stopwatch like a gym teacher from the 70s.
3. Ponds wipes
I don't even want to imagine what my skin would look like if I didn't use these after every workout. They leave my skin feeling so fresh and keep me free of breakouts. And yes, there are times when I need to use them in place of a shower... oh well!
4. Spin cleats
Before I became an instructor, I took spin classes in my sneakers. The first time I ever wore the proper cleats, I couldn't believe what a difference they made! By keeping your feet locked into the pedals, you're free to run faster, push harder and balance on the balls of your feet properly. If you're a frequent spinner, I highly recommend investing in a pair!
5. Microphone covers
My fellow instructors can back me up on this one - there is nothing more disgusting than having to use someone else's microphone cover that they just sweat and spat on for an hour. I bring my own and keep them washed so I never have to get that close to someone else's sweaty mouth.
You're welcome. There have been times when I've only had a few minutes to stop home, take a quick shower and grab something to eat before running out the door to my next class or client... and those seems to be the times when I forget to put on deodorant. I've made it much easier to remember by keeping it with me at all times!
7. Silicone wedding bands
Right after I got married, it made me so sad to take off my wedding rings to work out! Maybe that sounds pathetic, but it's totally true. I invested in some silicone ones so that I could still be #MarriedAF without worrying about scratching anything up or losing a diamond at the gym. I don't really wear them anymore, but I always have them on me just in case.
8. EOS lip balm
I am obsessed with the mint EOS lip balm, and I use it all the time because I am constantly licking my lips when I work out! (Anyone else do that? No? Just me? Okay...)
I've seen way too many people get comfortable and lose their stuff at the gym or a studio. I always lock my things away, no matter where I am or who I'm with.
10. Urban Decay lipstick
I've been known to wear all the colors of the rainbow on my lips, so I make sure to keep a bright, colorful lipstick in my bag for when I need the extra pick-me-up! (Riders who take my spin classes know that purple lipstick means it's going to be a tough class!)
11. BOSE bluetooth headphones
Upgrading my headphones was a game changer. With these bad boys, I can listen to music, talk on the phone, or even go between music and an Instagram video. The sound is crystal clear and the battery lasts for a few days, so I don't have to worry about charging them every night. If you listen to music when you run or work out, I definitely recommend these!
12. Slider disks
These sliders are perfect for increasing the burn on lunges, army crawls, beast walks or mountain climbers! I use them when I really need to kick up my work load and want to challenge myself. They're double sided so you can use them on a hard surface or carpet, so my in-home clients make great use of them, too!
13. Business cards
Any business owner will tell you - never leave home without them!
I eat bananas like they're going out of style. They're my favorite pre-workout snack because they're easily digested and give my body the carbohydrates it needs to get through a tough gym session. I eat about 4-6 a day!
These are another one of my favorite toys. I use them to help engage my hips during glute bridges and squats, but they're also an awesome tool for abs! My clients will tell you that I've found away to work almost any body part with these bad boys, and they'll leave you with a crazy burn!
16. Tape measure
I am not the biggest fan of measuring success by the scale. Yes, losing weight is a positive thing, but sometimes it's better to measure your progress with inches instead of pounds. Whether you're hoping to increase or decrease in size, there's only one way to know for sure if what you're doing is working.
What are your gym bag necessities ?