One of the things that puts me off going to the gym the most is having to get myself ready for the day or rest-of-the-day afterwards. You know how it is: you’ve finally got yourself to the gym, smashed a workout and now you must run errands, pop for lunch with a friend, or head back to work, but you’re sweaty and not really feeling up to it. I get it.
Thankfully with activewear continuing to trend as a bona fide outfit choice and also thanks to technology-centric gymwear that wicks moisture away, it isn’t really frowned upon to head out in yoga pants, a hoodie and new kicks, but your girl still just wants to look human.
The morning slot means I can fit in some workout fuel, respond to any business emails for the day, and gear myself up, whereas the afternoon slot allows me some headspace and to pour all of my work energy into a workout. This means that either way, I’m toting about some gear about to get myself back to my usual self.
Here’s a rundown of my post-gym essentials:
ban.do Gym Bag
First up is my beloved gym bag and I suppose it isn’t exactly a ‘post-gym’ item. I picked this up in a sale for the mere pricetag of £10.50 including next-day delivery! I’m a huge fan of ban.do, so when it became apparent that I’d need a hardy bag to toss in and out of my car boot and in and out of a gym locker, I instantly turned to them for a sassy slogan version. This one is made from cotton canvas and it doesn’t have a specific slot for damp clothes or trainers, which is fine as I add in my Sweaty Betty drawstring tote (they deliver their products in these) for that. It’s the perfect size for my toiletries bag, a change of clothes and shoes, a padlock, headphones, bottle and my gym pass. 11/10, would recommend.
I use these exclusively because my hair is up and down all day, whether because of my dog walk, for desk productivity purposes or the gym. They don’t leave marks or kinks in your hair, no matter how tight you tie your hair up, making them perfect for easy post-gym hair. Use it for your workout and then…
Sam McKnight Lazy Girl
Run a little Lazy Girl dry shampoo through your hair! I stopped using dry shampoos for absolutely ages, but there’s no two ways about it: dry shampoo is a godsend for occasions like ‘help my hair is disgusting but I need to go to the Post Office/for coffee/to see humans with a nose’. I spray some at the roots as well as through the lengths of my hair and massage it in. The Sam McKnight versions are pretty extortionate but absolutely worth the extra cash, if you ask me.
Glossier Priming Moisturiser
After the obligatory shower or face wash (I keep a spare face wash in my toiletries bag so if I don’t shower, I can at least wash any sweat and gym grime from my face and keep those pores clear), I’ve been really enjoying using Glossier’s Priming Moisturiser to hydrate my skin after the gym. It’s rich and fortified with agents that soothe, reduce redness and allow you to build layers for extra hydration, which are especially welcome when you’ve been sweating in a closed room/gym for an hour or so. See the full list of ingredients and benefits here.
Free Soul Hero Vegan Protein Blend
I always, always make a protein shake after a gym session. (Mostly because I’m a hungry girl.)
Please let me iterate here that I never ever have this as a meal replacement and certainly don’t condone that. However as I eat a vegetarian diet that sometimes falls short of my recommended macros, I find this just boosts my protein levels and does an all-round great job of fuelling my body with the good stuff. What I especially love about Free Soul’s Hero blend is that is also includes nutrients to boost your magnesium and zinc levels and is created to support women’s health and hormones. I add two scoops to my stainless steel shaker (you can buy it in a bundle) and fill to the recommended amount with either oat or almond milk. Wouldn’t recommend coconut milk with the chocolate flavour, but I guess it’s to your discretion! Overall, I LOVE this.
Graze Cocoa & Vanilla Protein Flapjack
Not into protein shakes? I absolutely LOVE Graze’s protein flapjacks to instantly add muscle recovery and growth power to my body and for a tasty treats. Sometimes I’ll work out and feel shaky and sick, and these do a great job of quickly refuelling my body.
Lastly, I also like to make sure I integrate dynamic stretching throughout my evenings to make sure I don’t ache the following day. I know so many people that’ll be like, ‘but I love to ache the next day, it means it’s working!’ but I am just not that girl. One of the key principles at my Barre class is that we always stretch after each little segment in the routine to encourage long, lean muscles and reduce aches because we work our muscles to fatigue in class, and I never ache the following morning AND I’ve seen some incredible changes to my physique. I’m just saying. So yes! I like to get some dynamic stretches in in the evenings so that I can perform at 100% for the next day’s workout.
Tip: Discover some great cool down stretches and routines on Spotebi here. https://www.spotebi.com/workout-routines/cool-down-routines/