One of the first things I did when we moved to Los Angeles was join a gym. I toured a few locations and settled on one that had two locations near our apartment and a good schedule of group fitness classes. I’m lucky that I work from home and don’t have to rush to/from an office after my classes, but I still have my gym bag packed and ready to go so I can hop over after I’m done for the day and get in my spin class or strength session. Here’s what I’ve been keeping in my bag:
I’ve been using my quilted MZ Wallace Metro Tote as my gym bag. I like that it doesn’t scream “athletic” with any sports logos, but rather its got a sleek black textured design. Its roomy and fits all of my stuff! I don’t wear any makeup to the gym (except for a little swipe of tinted lip balm!), but because I’m acne prone I’ll always wipe my face and neck down with a Simple Cleansing Wipe after class.
Keeping my hair off my face and neck is really important during an intense class. I’m a huge fan of both Lululemon and Zella headbands, and since my hair is fine, I use a wide, damage-free hair tie.
I track all of my workouts with my Apple Watch Sport. I have a Jawbone UP that I wear during the day and at night for sleeping, but it doesn’t track heart rate or “stationary” workouts like spinning, so the Apple Watch has been awesome for those workouts as well as my weekend bike rides along the beach. And speaking of spinning, I have a pair of Giro cycling shoes for class.
For barre/yoga classes my gym provides the mats, but I’m not sure how often they are cleaned so I’ll bring along a mat towel to place on top. After every use I can just toss it into the washing machine and have a clean towel to bring to every time!
For every trip to the gym (and pretty much anytime I leave the house) I always have my S’well bottle with me — keeps my drinks super cold with slippery no condensation on the bottle.
I typically take group fitness classes, but on the off-chance I miss the class (traffic!) I’ll have a pair of earbuds handy so I can get in a quick treadmill or elliptical session and still be able to listen to some music. And last but not least, I always keep some sort of healthy snack in my bag, like a Kind Bar, just incase I need some fuel before a workout!
What’s your must have for the gym? Send me a tweet at @tinewatson, or snap me at @moderngirltine!
Were you one of the millions of people who vowed in their New Years Resolutions to start going to the gym? If so, good for you! I, too, think that 2014 is my year to get healthy! But for someone who hasn’t been to the gym for awhile, it may be hard to smoothly integrate yourself with those already-dedicated gym rats. Here are a few Modern Girl tips for proper gym etiquette:
1. Take it serious
Those who are hardcore working out at 6am have a goal and a plan — get up, get their work out in, shower, and head off to work. It might be arms day, legs day, cardio, ab work, etc., and you should know what your plan is too. Decide what you want to do before you get there so you’re not aimlessly wandering around the equipment getting in someone’s way.
2. Know the gym rules
If you’re going to be going to the gym at a peak time, there are probably some rules about how long you can spend on a cardio machine — make sure to look for a sign, or inquire at the front desk. Gym rules also include re-stacking your weights, wiping down machines after use, and leaving your cell phone in your gym bag! If you’re using your cell to listen to music, make sure to set it up before you get there and stow it away in a pocket or armband.
3. Be clean!
Nobody wants to be working out next to someone who looks (and smells) like they haven’t showered since 2013. Just because you’re at the gym doesn’t mean you can’t be presentable. Pin/pull your hair back, and be sure to wash your gym clothes after every workout. It’s not only nice for your fellow gym goers, but its good for your skin too! Sweat in clothes harbors bacteria — yuck! It’s also a good idea to stash some face wipes in your bag post-workout to immediately remove pore-clogging sweat, bacteria and dirt from your skin.
4. Take it slow
Don’t be intimidated by others around you who may be marathon training or bench pressing 3x your weight. Go at your own pace and listen to your body! Over training or pushing yourself too hard can lead to injury. If you’re not sure how to do certain exercises or how to use some of the equipment, enlist the help of one of the gym trainers. Sometimes a session or two may be included in a new membership!
They say that if you want to accomplish something you should write it down and/or tell someone about it. Doing this creates the accountability that just does not exist when we keep all of our big plans bottled up inside our heads. I have never been one to make New Year’s resolutions, but this year I know there are some things I’d like to accomplish. And if for nothing else, I am posting them here to give myself the accountability I need to get them done. Here I go:
1. Go to the gym 2x a week
Might as well get the cliche one out of the way first. I have a gym membership, but I don’t use it very often. I am not resolving to go to the gym 7 days a week because, well, that’s just ridiculous and never going to happen. But I am not getting any younger and I could use a little more exercise in my life. Probably could use more than just 2x a week, but I am being realistic and making these resolutions as attainable as possible. I don’t want to set myself up for failure! And remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day!
2. Write every day
I want to get in the habit of writing every day. It could be here, it could be a letter to a friend, a thank you note, or just some thoughts I write down for myself.
I have been obsessed lately with decluttering all aspects of my life–everything from clothing to Facebook friends. My wardrobe could use an intervention and although I did put a TON of clothes into a storage container, I need to either sell or donate those items. And there are still things in my closet that could go too. My desk is rather cluttered, and I have papers and notebooks that could be recycled. My husband and I have enough books to fill a library, so I am thinking some could be sold via Ebay/Amazon or donated. There is also just a ton of junk that can be thrown out. My goal is to spend 10 minutes every day decluttering a small area of my house/life.
4. Cook dinner 3x a week
I have a spacious kitchen and more appliances than I need, but my husband and I order out several times a week. Not only is ordering out unhealthy, its expensive and unnecessary. Three days a week sounds like a good start. Right?
5. Visit the museum
I have been a member of the Museum of Fine Arts for two years now. I absolutely love museums, and the MFA is one of my favorites. However, I don’t visit as often as I should! I’d love to visit at least once a month to keep up on the visiting exhibits and explore more of the permanent exhibits.