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The before photo: Kellogg’s “Plus Up Your Gym Bag” makeover

I have never been on a makeover show, and I probably never will be, but my gym bag recently leaped at the opportunity to be made over (or would have if it weren’t an inanimate object). Here is the “before” photo:

My gym bag - before

Going clockwise from the left, we’ve got a towel which should make you happy the Internet doesn’t yet have smell-o-vision. There’s also a pink water bottle, deodorant, a lock, my pace/distance tracker, and a change of clothes which includes sports socks, a sports bra, and running pants all made from sweat-wicking materials. These are the basic things I use before, during and after my workouts.

That’s the gym bag as it is now, but tomorrow you will see it after the “Plus Up Your Gym Bag” makeover it got from Kellogg’s FiberPlus bars. Or you will as soon as I go and buy stuff for the makeover. Look at me, daring to put the “dead” in deadline! (If you have any ideas for what I should buy, do comment.) You’ll also have a chance to win your own gym bag makeover valued at $75.00. Stop by tomorrow at 8am EST for the scoop.

Disclosure: The cost of the “Plus Up Your Gym Bag” makeover was covered by Kellogg’s FiberPlus.

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Jen • September 14, 2010 at 10:03 am

My guess is that one savvy item to pack in there would be a Kellogg’s FiberPlus bar.

It doesn’t look like you plan to shower at the gym with that micro-towel, so I might add:

Those single-use facial wipes (you can use them all over but this way they won’t make your face break out)

A comb or brush and maybe some hair ties

an iPod shuffle


svb • September 14, 2010 at 10:17 am

As a fairly large woman I like to have my heart rate monitor since the equipment at the gym usually calculates calories burned for hauling just a little bit of butt around. I need the hairclip, like the first person mentioned. I have a water bottle with a freezable core so the water stays cold. I also use a chamois cloth to wipe down the equipment so I can rinse it and wring it before it goes back in my bag. I find it less smelly than the regular towel. And I second the shuffle. I usually end up bringing my iphone and being distracted by email, apps, whatever.


Shelly • September 14, 2010 at 11:08 am

Here’s something I just read by Leo Babauta of Zen Habits. It’s just such an uncanny juxtaposition to your post.


Stop buying unnecessary things.
Toss half your stuff, learn contentedness.
Reduce half again.
List 4 essential things in your life,
stop doing non-essential things.
Do these essentials first each day, clear distractions
focus on each moment.
Let go of attachment to doing, having more.
Fall in love with less.


Carol • September 14, 2010 at 12:01 pm

Yes, I would put some Kellogg’s items such as a Fiber One Bar or maybe some of their Protein Drinks. Also, if you are going to work, how about a hairbrush, comb and make up? I also have my I Pod in my gym bag. I also take my own shampoo, conditioner and body wash! (Travel sized of course).


Christina • September 14, 2010 at 12:10 pm

Shoes, elastics for your hair and some music.


Erinn • September 14, 2010 at 12:24 pm

Dry shampoo. Spray on, brush out, wicks the oily look away.


Shelley B • September 14, 2010 at 12:50 pm

I’d add Boots No. 7 face cloths (in the blue package) – for some reason sweat burns my face and having these available to wipe it off as soon as I’m done working out really helps.

Also, get some Body Glide – I swear that stuff is a miracle – no rubbing rashes anywhere (thighs, arms – I hear it even helps for blisters, although I’ve never tried it on my feet. yet.).

Hat for after the workout, if you have to run errands and want to look slightly pulled-together (that’s the look I aim for, anyway).


Bat • September 14, 2010 at 1:32 pm

I definitely second Dry Shampoo. It is a life saver if there is not time for a shower after a workout!!


Lanie • September 14, 2010 at 4:42 pm

How fun! Definitely needs glitter!


Debbi Does Dinner Healthy • September 14, 2010 at 5:37 pm

Tunes and a brush. Snacks. Chapstick. I never leave without it.


Sarah • September 14, 2010 at 5:43 pm

i’ll agree with the ‘something to pull your hair back’ comments. mine is long enough that a rubber band works, however i like to keep the elastic headbands in there too — i use them both in an effort to keep the flyaways from flopping onto my face.


ginny maxam • September 14, 2010 at 5:44 pm

I got to the gym about 5x a week, sometimes 6 and I usually sauna after a work out, so what is in my bag? A complete change of clothes, shoes a plastic bag for wet and sweaty clothes, Soap, comb + hairspray. a small bottle of oj (I’m diabtice and worry about low blood sugar after 90 miniutes in the gym and 20 in the sauna. and some nuts. that is it pretty simple! Towels are supplied by the gym .
Ginny M


Amy • September 14, 2010 at 8:48 pm

i love smartwool socks for exercising, they’re seriously awesome and seriously expensive (although very hard wearing) but if someone is offering to foot the bill…and yes i hope we all appreciate the pun…they’re a gym bag must have.


theorist • September 14, 2010 at 9:46 pm

-Some sort of MP3 player
-a bandana/headband or something to keep your hair off your face
-“shoe id” pouch so you wont have to carry your locker key (if you gym is like mine)
-a bpa free water container
-sugar free gum
-perhaps a high fiber snack (e.g., apple, kelloggs all bran drink mix)


Jessica Hart • September 14, 2010 at 11:56 pm

A notebook to keep track of your reps, workout plan etc, is always useful!


Natasha • September 15, 2010 at 6:37 am

I was just going over the contents of my gymbag and there is not a lot in it. I do my workouts at my lunch break from work and I know I should really beef it up a bit. Everything everyone has suggested is a good idea. The other thing I keep with me all the time is my after picture of the first time I lost weight in hopes that it will motivate me!! I am standing by a good looking Canadian Mounted Police in full uniform so that also encourages me to look at the picture often! So I would say that every gymbag needs something motivational to get you to actually go to the gym!!


Tris • September 15, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Small card with emergency contact #’s in case your treadmill has a toyota moment or the sauna door sticks. Breath mints and a small pair of scissors to clip those pesky tags out of your new workout clothing…..


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Jennette Fulda tells stories to the Internet about her life as a smartass, writer, weight-loss inspiration, chronic headache sufferer, and overall nice person (who is silently judging you). She does this at JennetteFulda.com now, but you can still have fun perusing her past here.

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