Gym Essentials

Yes, I am that girl who carries her gym bag with her at the gym- but it’s not just for show. My gym bag has everything I need or may need when training. Here’s what and why-

Gym Bag

It may seem a bit excessive, but I like to bring everything I might need for the gym in my bag.


I used to have a small Nike gym bag, about half the size of this one, and I would often run out of space in it; so I would constantly be switching things in and out, which led me to sometimes forgetting items I needed for that day’s workout.

Now, everything that’s in my bag- I just leave in there, and never forget a thing. 😊


One aspect of lifting that I’m not a fan of are callouses. Not only can they be painful, especially when doing pull-ups or gripping heavy weight from a barbell; callouses make your hands rough, and I don’t delight in that very much.

So, most of the time when I’m gripping a barbell or dumbbell, I’m wearing gloves. Plus, let’s be real- a woman in the gym with gloves looks pretty badass. 😎


My first two pairs were from T.J. Maxx; they lasted a few months each before completely ripping apart. So I got a Nike pair from Dick’s Sporting Goods about a year ago, and they have held up pretty good (however, I will need to get news ones soon, as you can see).

Amphipod AirFlow Microstretch Belt


My favorite gym essential!

This thing has seriously changed my life in the gym! For the first couple years of lifting, I would wear an arm band that I would have to constantly turn and adjust. I hated wearing it because I would feel restricted, especially when doing upper body exercises.

I got my Amphipod last summer and am still in love with it today. I was worried it would look and feel like a fanipack when I first got it, but it honestly doesn’t. It’s slim to your body and light, so it blends in with the waist band of your leggings/shorts– especially black ones, like the ones I am wearing here.

I have an iPhone 6 and it fits just fine, even with my case on. If you have an iPhone 6+, it should fit too (without a case most likely).

If you’re annoyed with being confined to an arm band, I highly encourage you to give this adjustable Amphipod a try; it’s only $20!

Resistance Bands


I use bands to warm-up or to conclude my workout (usually glutes or legs) with resistance and contraction from these bands.

You can use resistance bands in a variety of ways; and they typically come in a pack of three or four, with different resistance weights. Amazon has a pack of four bands for less than 10 bucks. Or, hit up your nearest sports store- I got this pack from Dick’s Sporting Goods for less than $20.

Running Shoes


Not all tennis shoes are created equal; that’s why I end up changing into running shoes before hitting cardio. Doing cardio in unsupportive, flat shoes can make your feet ache and make cardio more of a pain– literally and figuratively. That’s why I always keep a pair of running shoes in my bag.




If your gym feels like the inside of a refrigerator, it can make it harder to break a sweat. Personally, if I am not sweating during a workout, I don’t feel accomplished. That’s why I keep an extra hoodie in my bag; to wear until I’m warmed up, or to sweat harder during cardio. An extra layer is always handy to have!

Neoprene Wrap


I recently picked this thang up from my local T.J. Maxx for about $6- and am so glad I did!

At first, I only wore it during cardio (along with my jacket). Now, I am wearing this wrap during my whole workout. It offers a small amount of support for your back, while also allowing you to sweat more, especially from your core.

Miscellaneous Items

Extra hair ties

The second worst thing to forget besides headphones. Keep a few in your bag- you never know when one might break or get lost.


Protect your back, shoulders, and chest from dirty benches and machines- especially when wearing tank tops. Since doing this, my back has had less breakouts.


I don’t currently own my own weight lifting belt, but will invest in one soon when I start bulking again and thus lifting heavier weight- I’ll need it. It’s important to keep your back safe.

Alright, these are my must haves. What’s yours?

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8 thoughts on “Gym Essentials

  1. I’m just the opposite. The less I have to carry around with me, the better. In the summer, it’s warm enough, inside the gym and out, that I don’t need my hoodie. Besides the clothes on my body, I carry in my car keys and phone, which go in the pockets of my gym shorts, my washcloth, which I use as a wipe rag to clean off my sweat from benches and cardio machines, a water bottle so I can keep hydrated during my workout, and my notebook and pen.

    I was surprised that a notebook or exercise log wasn’t part of your list. I’m pretty scrupulous about recording my progress as I workout, making sure I achieve (or exceed) my goals. Once I get back home, I transfer everything to Google calendar so I have a multi-year record of my losses and gains.

    I was sick plus recovering from surgery for a month, so now that I’m back at the gym, I’m having to knock everything way back so I can start to build up again. Keeping a record lets me know how much I’ve lost and what my goals should be for the next several weeks.

    I highly recommend it.


    1. James,

      I used to be the same way- not wanting to carry much with me in the gym; I’d keep everything in the locker room, oftentimes going back inside the locker room because I would forget something from my bag (I can be ADD sometimes).

      You’re lucky your gym is warmer during the summer time; I wish mine was like that.

      Ironically, I just bought a little notebook today to track down mainly my food, and also my workouts. That’s a cool system that you have, writing it down, then transferring it over onto your electronic calendar. I bet it’s also a good form of accountability to yourself, to make sure you’re advancing, and challenging yourself. Also, it’s gotta be cool to look back on it in a year or two and see how far you have come. 🙂

      Hope your recovery from surgery and sickness is getting better by the day!


      1. Thanks. Getting better slowly. I’ve been pretty lax about tracking food lately. When I do, I use since when I’m eating, I’m usually in front of a computer.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post! I’ve been sick so I am a shadow of my former self. I have no idea where to start to get my nutrition and fitness even close to where they were. I look forward to following your blog and gain some inspiration.


    1. Jaye,

      Thank you! I’m sorry to hear you’ve been sick.
      I know, jumping in or jumping back into fitness and nutrition can be overwhelming- especially with the abundance of advice and programs that are floating around out there. Hopefully some of my posts can help bring ya back to speed. 🙂 Feel free to email me or anything if you have a certain question.

      Liked by 1 person

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