What’s In Your Gym Bag?

By Richelle Braswell

Pictured: Photos by Grace-Marie Brunken
Styled by Brittany Ross

Whether she’s running to work or running to the gym, a woman’s bag is a catch-all for her essentials. We peeked inside two women’s bags to see what they always keep with them. For Kelly Meier and Keri Witt, large gym bags are the perfect way to stash whatever they need — be it protein bars, a planner, face wipes or even extra clothes.


 

Kelly Meier

Group Fitness Instructor
Refine31, Gold’s Gym
Bag: Jon Hart Design

Q: How often do you change bags?
A: I kind of wear a bag out, so I’ve had the bag that I use now for a couple years. I find that if I change bags, sometimes I don’t transfer everything I need into the new bag.
Q: What do you always have in your bag?
A: My calendar, my phone, hair ties, a bottle of water, deodorant and lip balm. A hat in case I have to go in somewhere and my hair is gross from teaching. My spin shoes in case I have to teach a spin class. A tune belt that I wear around my waist to hold my microphone when I teach. You need special socks to teach barre, so I always have those with me. Earphones. I’m a big runner, and I like to have my earphones with me.
Q: What is one emergency item in your bag?
A: To be honest, I have deodorant in my bag at all times. I never know where I have to go right after I teach.
Q: Do you have anything unusual in your bag?
A: A random McDonald’s toy from my children. There’s always something like that in there.
Q: What items do you never leave the house without?
A: My phone. I have three kids, so I need a way for schools to get in touch with me. My planner that I write things down on and where I schedule everything. At least two or three protein bars for when I don’t have time to eat. And a bottle of water.
Q: What is the most important gym item that you keep?
A: My spin shoes. It’s really hard to teach without those. They clip into the spin bike, and it makes you work a little harder. It enhances your ride and makes it better.
Q: How often do you clean out your bag?
A: Probably once a month, and that’s only because I have protein bar wrappers, empty water bottles and McDonald’s toys.
Q: What does your own diet and fitness regimen look like?
A: I work out almost every single day. It’s become part of my life. I’ve been doing it for so long, I can’t imagine not working out. I get grumpy if I don’t. I try to eat as clean as I can and drink a lot of water, but sometimes that fails.
Q: How do you balance a busy schedule with a healthy lifestyle?
A: Plan ahead and be cognizant of the fact that your schedule is going to get crazy during the week. We always sit down on Sunday as a family and slot times to be together and to eat healthy. It’s planning around crazy schedules and not waiting to decide what to do.
Q: What is one piece of fitness advice you always tell your students?
A: I always tell my students to focus on health and not weight loss. The way [a lot of women] get through a gym door is focusing on weight loss. I think that’s defeating. If you focus on overall health, weight loss is a secondary benefit.

 


 

Keri Witt

Fitness Coach
Orangetheory Fitness
Bag: Nike

Q: How often do you change bags?
A: When they break or smell. I could get a good solid year out of a bag. Maybe even longer.
Q: What do you always have in your bag?
A: Chapstick, face wipes, deodorant, a pair of socks, my heart rate monitor for [Orangetheory Fitness] workouts, gum for sure. Other items in my bag change depending on whether I work out that day. Instead of having perfume and makeup, I may have shampoo, body wash or body spray. Not so worky, but more gymy. Headbands for sure. I think the types of clothes and shoes. Usually, I’ll carry an extra pair of socks. Just the other day, I was here working. Halfway through my second class, I felt my toe ripping through my sock. Good thing I had extra ones.
Q: What is one emergency item in your bag?
A: Girl products.
Q: Do you have anything unusual in your bag?
A: I have a 6-month-old, [so] there could probably be a paci. Right now, I think the most random things are cotton balls. I don’t know why. I just saw that a second ago when I opened up my bag.
Q: What items do you never leave the house without?
A: Chapstick. Lately, I’m addicted to the Burt’s Bees face wipes. I take them everywhere. A pair of tennis shoes and extra socks.
Q: What is the most important gym item that you keep?
A: When I work out, when I do anything, I’m always chewing gum. It can make or break a workout.
Q: How often do you clean out your bag?
A: It usually stays pretty clean because I use it every day.
Q: What does your own diet and fitness regimen look like?
A: I’m here at [Orangetheory Fitness], where I get a good interval training in. For diet, I try to go as clean as I can. I have a baby, three kids. It gets crazy, so some days are better than others.
Q: How do you balance a busy schedule with a healthy lifestyle?
A: You just do it. Don’t even think about it. Just do it. You just got to make time for what you want to do and take care of yourself.
Q: What is one piece of fitness advice you always tell your students?
A: Be patient with the process. A lot of times people aren’t happy with themselves, and it didn’t take overnight to get that way. You just got to stick with it. Dig deep, be strong.

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