I’m probably not the best person to talk to when it comes to fitness, my own fitness journey leaves a lot to be desired!! I’ve said it many a time, my weight fluctuates dramatically, its the one thing I’m not so proud of and its an issue that constantly weighs heavy on my mind! I’ve spoken about my weight loss before and how just by eating healthily I managed to take off a few stone and resemble the old me, well since then I’ve not been so good with keeping up the healthy lifestyle so as a bid to save myself I joined the gym!! The old me (the one I’m trying so hard not to listen to) use to make up excuses about why I couldn’t go to the gym. I’d often blame it on my asthma and vow I’d lose weight some other way. I’m now at the point in my life that I know if I want something, I need to put in the work to get there, joining the gym and actually going is one of those things!
Going to the gym and being prepared for the gym however are two different things and I learnt this the hard way! On my first visit to the gym a few months back I got dressed and all geared up to go, stepped out the door empty handed, no bag, no drink, nothing at all and made my way to the gym – that’s a mistake I’ll never make again. So if you’re a little bit like me this post should come in handy! I’ll be sharing what I think are the essentials for any starting gym goer, but first things first you need suitable Gym-wear!! I’ve gone a little crazy with gym clothes recently, I constantly find myself checking online stores and adding item after item to my never ending wish-list; at the moment I’m loving the ladies gym leggings at Jack Wills, in fact I’m loving everything in their sports range! This is the part where I have to advise you based on my past mistakes – ANY gym goer should definitely invest in a good pair of trainers and (if you’re a female) get yourself a sports bra! There is nothing worse than working out in hard as hell trainers that aren’t supportive or comfortable enough, and your workout will be made 10 times worse if your boobs are left flying all over the place!! Now, lets get into my top 7 gym bag essentials…
Shocker!! It never occurred to me that I’d need money for the lockers at the gym!! As someone who wasn’t very experienced with the way gyms work one of my first experiences bringing my gym bag with me was a stressful one. I ended up choosing a locker that I thought was pretty out of the way, threw my stuff in and hoped for the best! Luckily my things were still there when I returned but its not a mistake I’ll be making again, just in case!
Sure, most gyms have water fountains, but you can’t run over to a fountain every time you need a drink! Which whilst working out, can be often! Taking a water bottle with you is much more convenient especially if you don’t want to take a break from using the machine you’re on, plus you’ll be able to drink freely instead of feeling like you’re dying of thirst. I find having my bottle with me is most helpful when I’m doing some form of cardio, 20 minutes of cycling – come at me!!
Believe it or not bringing your phone to the gym isn’t solely for the purpose of creating boomerangs on Instagram stories whilst your dripping with sweat, I use mine for music! If like me you get a bit anxious and hope no one ends up talking to you whilst trying your best to work out, it can all be avoided with a bit of music going through your headphones. This is definitely a universal ‘don’t talk to me’ method so don’t worry, you’re not being rude! I’ve made myself a gym playlist on Spotify that pushes me through a workout, I find that time goes much faster when listening to music too which is definitely what we all need to keep us motivated!
Without a doubt, wireless headphones will become your go to gym essential!! I’ve tried working out with normal headphones but the wire gets in the way, its distracting and I always find myself getting caught in it somehow! To alleviate any stress invest in a good pair of wireless headphones, I managed to find a great pair of Sony in ear headphones on Very that haven’t let me down yet. It just makes your gym experience that bit easier and nicer, I’ll never leave home without mine now!
Arm Strap Phone Holder
This is one of my key essentials for working out, an arm strap phone holder – it might sound boring but its a game changer! You need somewhere to place your phone right? Especially if like me, you use it for music. With an arm strap you don’t need to worry about where to put your phone or remembering to pick it up machine after machine, just velcro that shit to your arm and carry on! Arm straps are a really inexpensive essential for the gym too, I bought mine on Amazon for a mere £4.
There is nothing worse than witnessing someone who’s dripping in sweat using a machine to then finish up without cleaning it after themselves, but it happens!! At most gyms people will follow the simple etiquette rule of wiping the machine over after use, my gym provides wipes for this but for any that don’t you can substitute those for a hand towel! It takes 2 seconds to clean your machine after use, so be considerate of others and if someone hasn’t been so considerate to you, your trusty towel will be there ready to spring in to action!
Big surprise!! You probably won’t be able to smell yourself very well after working out so just for the sake of freshening up, bring your best antiperspirant!! It goes without saying that deodorant should be applied before a workout but you might need a little extra once you’re done! I live 2 minutes away from my gym so I’m able to get home and shower straight after a gym sesh, if you prefer to shower at home freshening those pits is a good idea. I’m pretty positive that we’ve all had an unpleasant BO experience at some point so lets not force someone else to under go that trauma! Deodorant is Godly, remember that!
Now you’re all set for the gym and ready for a good workout!! If you’re on a bit of a health kick at the moment be sure to check out these healthy meals that were key in my journey to losing weight!