How to Refresh After the Gym in 10 minutes

We all know that some physical activity should be part of our daily routine, but with work and kids and errands and housework, it so easily gets shifted to the bottom of the priorities list.  Ironically, all the research and evidence shows that staying fit and active actually helps you handle all of those other responsibilities, increasing both physical and mental energy.

Its not that we don't want to work out, its just that in addition to the time it takes to actually do the working out, there's the condition we're left in post-work out: sweaty (maybe a little 'fragrant'), melted make-up, flat hair.  If you're like me, and the only time to squeeze in a workout is on your lunch break, then you don't want to go back to your office or spend the day looking a mess.  So here are my tips to looking put-together in 10 minutes after a sweat-session.

Body (2 minutes)

Obviously, shower if you can.  But make it quick.  Cool water, as cool as you can stand will actually help your body temp lower more quickly, because there's nothing worse than showering and trying to get dressed and you're still sweating.

If there is no shower option, then keep some body wipes in your gym bag.  There are a variety of options out there, so find the scent/formula you like, then do wipe down of at least everything from the waist up.

Hair (3 minutes)

I usually wear my hair down during the day for the office, but I absolutely HAVE to have it up and off my face and neck for my workout. While I do sweat, wearing my hair up not only keeps me a bit cooler, but it keeps the sweat from dripping down the strands and making it a mess.  If you tend to wear your hair in the loose waves/bedhead style, then wrapping it up into a loose bun on the top of your head can help preserve the style.

I know everyone's hair is different, and so there's no one way to manage post-gym hair. My hair is fine but not thin, mostly wavy with extra curly sections along my temple and neckline.  My hair will hold the crimp of a hairband or a braid if I've been sweating.  And it will be flat from being pulled back. My solution: the hairdryer.  I have a small travel dryer that I keep in my bag. Flip head upside down and do a quick crazy blow in all directions to lift the roots and loosen hair-band kinks.  Don't blow too long or it will make you sweat again.  Either before or after the hairdryer (or both -- figure out what works best for your hair) spritz roots with your preferred dry shampoo.  Will help absorb any extra sweat and oil, and keep you fresh.

I also have a tiny travel flat iron that I use to tame my temple curlies when they get out of control.  There are a lot of nifty mini stylers out there now.

And of course, there's always the fresh ponytail as a back up when all else fails.

Makeup (3 minutes)

They say you're supposed to take your makeup off BEFORE you workout. I confess I do not (I know, shame on me.)  The reality is, if you spend more than 3 minutes putting your face on in the morning, then you're not going to be able to recreate your entire effort after the gym in 3 minutes.  So you either have to keep some of what you started with on, or you just settle for being less made up the second half of the day.

Again with the wipes.  Either before or after or both, you can clean your face with your choice of face wipes.  To make the most of my morning application, I don't remove eye makeup.  That's really what takes most of us the longest, and eyelids don't tend to be very sweaty body parts, so likely most of your morning work has stayed put.  If it has melted to your under-eye area, clean up with your face wipe.

Now to save time, its all about the multi-function products.  BB Creams save time by providing moisture and coverage in one.  And you can blend with your hands (or keep an extra Beauty Blender in your gym bag.) Then for extra coverage/concealer and some highlighting, foundation sticks are quick and easy as well.  Apply straight from the tube, or dot where needed with finger to blend.  Lastly, for some color to your cheeks and lips, a quick swipe of a dual lip & cheek stick has you ready to go. 

Get Dressed (2 minutes)

Since you don't have to decide what to wear, this should be easy.

Hope some of these tips will help you find the time to squeeze some fitness into your day.  It's definitely do-able, it just needs to stay at the top of your priorities list.  Good luck!!