The anatomy of my gym bag

As someone who likes to be prepared for everything it’s taken a long time to figure out all of the necessities I need to have with me in my gym bag. It’s taken a lot of situations of me cursing myself for forgetting something or wishing I had it with me to know what to stock my bag with.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten to the gym only to realize I’ve forgotten some integral part of my workout routine. So from all of my misfortunate situations I have gained the knowledge to share with you my 10 gym bag necessities so that you don’t have to go through what I have.

Shoes (plus laundry sheets to de-stink): 

There have been times when I’ve gotten to the gym only to realize I’ve forgotten my shoes and have to go back home to get them. The best bet is to keep your gym shoes in your bag all the time to avoid this heartbreaking event. Maybe throw in a spare pair of socks just for good measure.

Because my runners get seriously smelly after a while I’ll also throw some dryer sheets into my bag to stick in my shoes after a workout. After all no one wants a stinky gym bag!


I honestly hope that I don’t have to tell you why this is so important. Let’s be real, we all sweat and we can all get smelly so lets try and combat that as much as possible. I will admit that there have been times that I’m on the run and forget to put deodorant on at home so keeping one in my gym bag is an absolute savior. Don’t be that person at the gym.

A lock:

Most gyms require a lock for your things in a locker. It’s best to be safe rather than sorry when it comes to your belongings. No one likes to finish a workout and find their keys gone so just throw a lock into your bag and leave the worry behind!


All gyms will have a first aid kit, but I like to be prepared. Most often this is for blisters when I wear the wrong socks and go for a long run – and grabbing a blister Band-Aid when walking is literally painful is a serious saving grace. Also, I’m clumsy and don’t need to bleed all over the gym floor when I fall.

A sweatshirt:

Sometimes my gym can be absolutely freezing and trying to do any kind of exercise when your muscles can’t get warm just isn’t safe. I also like to keep cozy during my warm up and stretching so keeping a sweater in my bag just makes sense.


Honestly forgetting my headphones at home when I go to workout is possibly one of the worst things. I’m then forced to listen to my own wheezing breathes, other strange conversations, grunting men, and a weird mix of the music playing at the gym. Keeping my headphones in my bag is the best way to ensure that I’ll be able to get in the zone and kill my workout!


I’ve gotten into the habit of chewing gum when I workout (which may not be completely safe honestly). But I like that I can leave the gym feeling fresh with some nice minty breath!

Hair elastics:

When I’m at the gym I’m there to work, and to work hard. That being said, if I workout with my hair down it ends up being a totally sweaty mess that is frustrating and a seriously unattractive sight. There have been times that I have torn a tassel off my car keychain just to have something to put my hair up with. It’s just easier to throw a pack of hair elastics into your gym bag so you don’t have to worry!

A water bottle:

Staying hydrated during a workout is super important and I cannot stress that enough. Running back and forth from the water-fountain between sets is time consuming and honestly annoying. For this reason, I always keep an empty water bottle in my gym bag just in case I forget.

A juice box or snack:

As someone with low blood pressure that has the tendency to get light headed and occasionally pass out – this is an important one for me. It’s safer for everyone if I have something with a little bit of sugar in it in case I’m feeling woozy part way through a workout. It’s easy to keep a juice box or granola bar in my bag so that I don’t have to deal with passing out at the gym.

So, look at your own gym bag and think of all the things you don’t want to live without! Be prepared for everything that could happen at the gym and save yourself a lot of embarrassment and frustration by stocking up on what you need.