Without pretending I’m totally enthusiastic about fitness and having a healthy lifestyle regime, I have actually started going to the gym before work. I know, I shock even myself. Joking aside, it has genuinely really helped me to feel a bit better about myself. Now at least if I eat that big pizza on a Friday night I can feel a little less guilty about it. Aside from packing the obvious change of clothes and tissues to wipe away my tears about being up early to exercise, these are some of my absolute musts that I always keep in my gym bag.
Deodorant is 110% a must, of course in daily life but it’s absolutely necessary at the gym. It honestly puts me off so much when I’m exercising and all I can smell is someone else’s stale sweat. Something I’d really like to work towards is becoming completely cruelty free with all of my beauty products or at least doing my absolute best to avoid things that have been tested on animals. The one thing I haven’t really seen any alternatives for is deodorant so I went on a Google search and came across a brand called Ben & Anna*.
Ben & Anna are a vegan couple who realised that there were no vegan and cruelty free deodorants on the market so they decided to create their own. Their deodorants contain only natural ingredients and are free of parabens, aluminium, alcohol and synthetic aromas. They also recently launched new packaging in the form of recyclable paper tubes so they’re eco-friendly too. I decided to approach Ben & Anna because I was very eager to see just how good their deodorant is and they very kindly offered me one in a scent of my choice. I immediately jumped for the ‘vanilla orchid’ scent because anything vanilla is always my first choice, however they have 6 other fragrances to choose from including ‘pink grapefruit’ and ‘persian lime.’ Vanilla orchid is such a relaxing scent and this stick deodorant is absolutely ideal for sensitive skin, containing organic shea butter and coconut oil to keep you nice and moisturised. Since receiving this, it’s stayed firmly in my gym bag to apply before exercising and after my shower and it does the job perfectly. My underarms have never felt so silky smooth!
One thing that is absolutely essential for the gym is a reusable water bottle. I absolutely love my water bottle from New Look as it holds the perfect amount of water for me. I get through so much water when I’m exercising so a bottle this size means I can get through my whole workout without needing to refill halfway through. Plus, it has measurements across the side to make sure you’re drinking consistently throughout the day so it’s great to keep on my desk at work as a reminder as well.
Personally, my favourite part of the gym is definitely have a nice refreshing shower afterwards. I love these little travel bottles from Superdrug as it means that I can fill them up with my favourite shampoo, conditioner and shower gel without having to repurchase travel sized products all the time. I would definitely recommend getting yourself some of these if you shower at the gym or if you travel around a lot, it saves so much money in the long run.
Following on from the showering situation, a microfibre towel has become an absolute must for me. I was originally using a regular towel at first and it was taking up so much room in my bag, I was struggling to zip it shut. I came across this microfibre towel in Primark, it only cost me a few quid and it’s an absolute lifesaver. It folds up really small, taking up barely any room and it dries really quickly so you’re not carrying around a big soggy towel all day.
I truly don’t understand where all of my bobbles disappear to, there definitely must be a hidden black hole somewhere that sucks them up along with bobby pins and odd socks. I like to keep a big bunch of bobbles in my gym bag just so that I never run out because I honestly can’t think of anything worse than having my hair in my face when I’m working out. I always get my bobbles from Primark as they do a huge bunch of them for a couple of quid, you really can’t go wrong there.
The last and absolutely vital essential for the gym has got to be headphones. Whatever your chosen entertainment is, be it audio books, music, podcasts – headphones make a workout so much more enjoyable. My favourite thing to do at the moment is catch up on videos from my favourite YouTubers, aka repeatedly watching Shane Dawson’s series all about spilling the tea on Jake Paul.