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Although the beginning of summer is a great time to make new fitness goals, it’s also often a tough time to get yourself to the gym. When the sun is out, the days are long and the wine is chilled, it can be really difficult to motivate yourself for a workout. And although we’re all about relaxing and enjoying those lazy summer evenings, we want to help make exercise a regular part of your summer routine.

Unfortunately, it’s oh-so-easy to talk yourself out of a workout for a variety of reasons. Thankfully, though, we’ve taken care of one of those excuses for you. Gone are the days of packing and re-packing a gym bag, because we’ve gone ahead and made the perfect packing list for you. Stock your gym bag with these essentials, and you’ll be ready to grab your bag, fit in a workout and get home in time for happy hour on the patio.

things you should always have in your gym bag

  1. L. Erickson Sport Ponytail Holders, $12 | 2. Packet of Whole Natural Almonds, $0.49 per packet | 3. Fitbit Alta HR, $149.95 | 4. urBeats by Dr. Dre Earbuds, $99.95 | 5. S’well Stainless Steel 17oz. Water Bottle, $35 | 6. Nike Free RN 2 Running Shoes, $100 | 7. Kristin Ess Style Reviving Dry Shampoo, $14 | 8. Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes, $6.99 | 9. Lululemon Fringe Fighter Headband, $18 | 10. Gaiam Yoga Mat Towel, $19.98 |

1. Hair ties. The best hair ties, like these ones from L. Erickson, hold your hair back securely without creating a crease in your hair. Load your bag with a bunch—you can never have too many!

2. Energy bar. Keep morale and energy levels high with an on-the-go snack that’s easy to bring with you and full of protein, like a packet of almonds. You can buy small, individual packets like these at most grocery stores, or we even recommend throwing a handful in a Ziploc baggie to make your own grab-and-go snack. Almonds are full of protein and fiber, and low on the sugar, so they’re perfect for fueling up post-workout.

3. Fitness tracker. Not only are fitness trackers a great way to stay motivated throughout the day, but they’re perfect for maximizing your time at the gym. Fitbits (and the other models of fitness trackers available) help you control your heartrate, set distance goals while running, walking or biking, and track calories burned.

4. Cute headphones. Working out is a perfect opportunity to tune out the stress of the world and focus inwards, and a great pair of noise-reducing headphones can help accomplish this. Whether you prefer in-ear or ear-covering varieties, there are tons of stylish and high-functioning choices available!

5. Water bottle. A cute and functional water bottle not only keeps you hydrated, but it looks great too. The best water bottles keep your water icy cold, helping you stay refreshed for the duration of your workout—and even after you’re done!

6. Cute shoes. Perhaps most importantly, a reliable gym shoe is necessary no matter what type of workout you prefer. Choose a pair that is equally comfortable and stylish. After all, it’s way easier to work out when you’re excited about what you’re wearing.

7. Dry shampoo. Oftentimes, squeezing in a workout requires moving quickly from one activity to the next without time for a shower. Keep a good dry shampoo (like our favorite from Kristen Ess) in your bag to spray on your hair after a workout. Your blowout will thank you!

8. Makeup remover wipes. It’s essential to wipe your face clean post-sweat, so stash makeup-dissolving wipes in your bag for an on-the-go wash. These can also be useful before a workout, as having leftover makeup on your skin while you sweat can clog your pores and cause breakouts.

9. Headband. A flyaway-fighting headband is key when it comes to being on your A-game at the gym. You won’t want to worry about messing with your hair, so keep a sleek headband handy. Bonus: Even if you don’t like to work out with a headband on, it can be a quick fix to throw on dirty hair post-gym.

10. Towel. Keep sweat at bay with a moisture-wicking towel. Use it to wipe your face or lay over your yoga mat—just don’t forget to give it a good wash post-workout to avoid that musty gym bag smell.

What do you keep stashed in your gym bag?

Share your own personal product picks in the comments!

XO Team LC

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