What’s in my gym bag?

Lately, my newsfeeds on Twitter and Facebook have been inundated with those silly posts that lifestyle bloggers do called What’s in My Bag? You know the ones. Those tedious, paid-for, super-promotional posts aimed to sell the various products that are allegedly in their bags. I looked at the perfectly set-up pictures and rolled my eyes.

And then I thought, wouldn’t it be funny if I did a similar post called What’s in My Gym Bag and highlighted the variety of old, ridiculous things in my massive gym? And just to be clear. This is not a functional gym bag. I don’t actually take it to the gym. I don’t think I have ever taken it to the gym. It weighs about 5 kilos. It’s more like storage. I have moved this bag from multiple homes and even moved it overseas from Toronto to London. It’s basically a way for me to surreptitiously hide all my gym and fitness paraphernalia. And there is a LOT of it.

My gym (storage) bag

My gym (storage) bag

So here we go. An absolutely unpaid, non-sponsored, somewhat ridiculous look at the various gear, kit, equipment and random-ness of my gym / storage bag:

Whats in my gym bag

There was so much stuff I couldn't fit it all in one pic!

There was so much stuff I couldn’t fit it all in one pic!

1. Four swim caps/hats. Why do I need four? I don’t know. Just because. I usually wear the white Speedo one, or the pink one. The other two are souvenirs from the London Triathlon and the Brighton and Hove Triathlon.

2. A super absorbent towel. This was handy for when I as practicing open water swimming in the summer. Not so useful now. But I could bring it to the gym, you say! Nah. Let them do the laundry.

3. A broken pair of prescription sunglasses. The arm is broken, but I can still wear them for running sometimes.

4. Body Glide. Some super useful body lube to avoid chafing. Of all the things in this bag, this is possibly one of the more useful items. To read more about how to avoid chafing, check out my blog post here.

5. A NOWCA swim bracelet. A necessary item for open water swims at the Royal Victoria Docks. This tracks your time, and helps them find your body if you drown! Cool!

6. Eleven different headbands and a Buff. It may appear like this is a problem. You may even be thinking to yourself that this is the beginner stages of hoarding. But I beg to differ. There are many varieties here – Nike, Lululemon INKnBURN and they are all useful. Pretty ones, thick ones, thin ones, lined ones for cold weather running. They are all critically necessary.

7. A Nike+ GPS Sports Watch. While a bit dated, I still get lots of use out of this watch. That said, I just got the new Apple Series 2 Watch with Nike+ (review coming soon!) so this might become obsolete very soon.

8. Nike earbud headphones. I got these as a giveaway years ago. I have never used them. But they remain a backup just in case the ones I actually use die.

9. Hermes Shampoo & Conditioner. I stole these from a fancy hotel in France in the summer. Having just found them as a result of writing this post, I have put them in my actual gym bag to use at the gym. Yay!

10. Safety Reflector Lights. Some reflectors for my bag for cycling or running. I have some already so these are spare.

11. Weight lifting gloves. These are great for gym classes that involve a lot of lifting, or classes that involve body weight exercises. I also used them for The O Course back in 2013 and they were absolutely critical to protect my hands. Even though they still got beat up, I was glad I had them!

12. Two hydration bladders. Graham and I used these last year on our Mount Kilimanjaro trip. The tubes have mold in them now but maybe I could try to wash them for future use?

13. A fuel belt. This fuel belt and I have travelled a lot of miles together. It also saw me through my first marathon. I still use it for all my long runs.

14. Earmuff headphones. I mean, I’m just not really sure what to say about these. They are a weird novelty item that was much more useful in Toronto than London.

15. Anti-Chafing Samples. Some freebies from a recent race that I have yet to use

16. A Running Light. What else can I say?

17. A weird little cap with a hole for your ponytail. I don’t like to wear this because it makes me look bald.

18. An armband with the headphones I actually use.

19. A Klean Kanteen water bottle

20. Two hats. Your standard Nike one and a souvenir from the Markham Winery in California

That is a lot of stuff. But even after having taken it all out of the bag, examined it, laid it out for the pictures and written about it, there’s nothing I would get rid of. Well, maybe the moldy hydration bladder, but still. All good stuff and I recommend all of it. Even all 11 of the headbands.

This post was in no way sponsored by any brand, though I genuinely love all brands mentioned.


  1. Alison Clare November 3, 2016 / 8:40 pm

    I’d get rid of, or at least wash the mouldy bladder. Maybe the broken glasses too

    • thoughtsandpavement November 3, 2016 / 8:44 pm

      Probably good advice 🙂

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