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Packing while working out isn’t easy. Depending how you choose to work up a sweat (it’s easier while riding a bike than, say, during a crossfit session, never mind swimming), carrying even a pocket pistol can be cumbersome, uncomfortable, and restricive. Still, there are those who simply won’t be without some form of ballistic protection no matter what they’re doing. Do you carry during cardio? Pack during pilates? If so, how? What gun and gear combination do you use?


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  1. My preferred exercise at the gym is swimming laps.

    My spear gun and dive knife may get funny looks, but who’s gonna be laughing when I save their asses from ISIS’ nefarious plot to take over an LA Fitness in South Seattle?

    • Same here: lap swimmer at L.A. Fitness, but in Houston, of course.

      I don’t even take my firearms inside, not because of the 30.06 signs posted prominently at the entrance, but because I just know someone would see me place them in my locker and would promptly pop off my Masterlock padlock to snatch them. I’m not a fan of leaving them in the car, either, so I pass up a more convenient location in-town and instead swim at the location near our home.

      It’d be easier at the first location, as it’s more crowded at the second location by the time I arrive, but the first location is just far too sketchy to leave valuables in my car. I’m already doing what I can to conceal my $700 Saddleback Leather briefcase with my laptop, iPad, and cell phones inside, even in the good neighborhood location. I just can’t risk the trouble of a break-in back at the in-town location. So I’m temporarily vulnerable to ISIS or whomever else, too.

      • Okay, serious answer is that my location has little valuables lockers by the basketball court and the front entrance that you can program a one-time code in to so you don’t have to leave your wallet in the crappy lockers in the changing room.

        I keep a zipper pouch with my gym stuff and put my LCP, phone, and wallet in there while I’m still in the car. Once inside, that all goes in to the mini-safe/locker with a code only I know, and no one has seen what is in the pouch I put in there.

        I don’t trust leaving my gun in my car either. I really, really don’t want to explain to my wife that I had a gun stolen from me. The cops? Meh, whatever.

      • You should buy a better padlock if they let you use your own locks. $20 on an Abus or $75 on an Abloy could be easily justifiable given the value of what you’re protecting.

        • The padlock isn’t the issue, it’s the lockers themselves I don’t trust.

          I could use hardened 5 ton chain and it would still take someone all of 4 seconds to pry off the particle board door of the “locker.”

          I am probably being overly cautious, but it’s my stuff, ya know?

    • Your woods must be devoid of the bears, wolves, moose, and cougars that frequent mine.

      Dan, you typed “crossfire session” but did you mean “crossfit?” The only crossfire I know of definitely involves guns haha

      • Nope. None of those here. Deer and turkey. I don’t need to play the “Whose Woods Is More Dangerous Game”.

        • When cycling, a Kel-Tec PF9 at 5:00 under my jersey.
          When running trails, usually nothing. We don’t have brown bears in Colorado, and they’re the only 4 legged predator I fear. If a mountain lion is desperate enough to attack a human, then it’ll be on me before I see or hear it, anyway.
          On a longer, solo run I’ll put the Kel-Tec in my camelback, pretty much as a signaling device if I get injured. I can get out of cell service within 5 minutes of the trailhead around here. It’s pretty cool to be able to see Denver but not call there.

      • A wise man you are to carry. I do as well, since hick-boy sicced his dog on me years back.

        As to Jeremy S’s comment on bears and cougars and whatnot: I’ve been known to let the split-tailed cougars catch me on occasion… 🙂

  2. I just do workout DVDs like Insanity or use the Total Gym at the house, so carrying while exercising is not necessary for me as there is always a gun nearby when I workout. Insanity kills me so much that I don’t think I could hit my dry wall if a SD scenario happened while exercising!

  3. Yes, but then my workout is on a bicycle, so carrying is not a challenge.

    It is, however, the only circumstance when I am outside the house that I engage in off-body carry. My compact Ruger is in a small zippered bag under the crossbar. With the zipper open about an inch, it is a quick and easy motion to stick my finger in the gap, draw it back to open the zipper the rest of the way, and then unholster.

  4. No. Most of my workout is based on the “prison” concept of using my own body weight. So I have a pull up bar in the door to my office a few dumbbells, a few exercise bands and a jump rope. No need to carry when I can just lay the gun on a table a few feet away.

    Really, the only working out I do outside the house is swimming a mile in the mornings and BJJ (these days, when I can squeeze it in). Neither is conducive to carry.

  5. Gun safe is in the same room as the free weights. Weapon handling is part of a typical session for me. When resting between sets I dryfire/reloads/stand-kneel-prone/transitions/etc….
    Awesome doing it when the heart is pounding and the muscles are twitching.
    Always a loaded mag nearby just in case.

    • That is a good idea! Way to use your rest time. Is lead contamination an issue? Touching gun stuff and then touching a heated, sweaty body doesn’t seem like a good idea.

      • As long as he’s not licking his workout equipment it shouldn’t matter. Ingestion or inhalation are the main problems with lead.

        It’s a damn fine idea. I’m going to start doing that.

  6. Don’t carry when I am at the gym doing weights. Everything else is outside and depending what I am doing my workout may include humping a back and rifle.

  7. A crossfire workout? Is that where you get in a circle with a treadmill in the middle and everyone around the circle shoots at it while dodging the crossfire? Nope…I don’t workout like that.

  8. Yep. Exercise is the reason I bought a gun in the first place and it’s mostly the only time I carry. I live in a rural area where there are lots of dogs who will chase cyclists down the road. I got fed up with it and started carrying a gun.

    • A frame mounted pump works great. My old school silca with a campagnolo brass head has swatted of a fair share of dogs. I usually carry when I ride, but frankly, unless the dog is a real threat, I’d rather just swing the pump. It extends to about 4 ft in length when I pull it out and the solid brass head packs a good whallop.

      • Fortunately, I haven’t had to use my gun on a dog. I prefer to pedal for my life. I have 3 lines of defense when I excise. First is to pedal, second is to use my can of pepper spray, third is my gun. So far, I have been able to out pedal all the dogs around here. There was one situation where I needed a weapon and didn’t have any. That was when I was walking instead of biking. A dog ran out onto the road and wouldn’t let me move without acting like it was going to bite my leg.

  9. I keep a firearm close and available when I am in the midst of strenuous activity. Whether or not that means I have a firearm fastened to my body somewhere depends on many factors.

  10. Yes, always armed.

    Light weights and the treadmill.

    S&W M&P 340 no lock, with S&W Crimson Trace. So it’s now S&W M&P 340CT and no lock. One speed loader and a Benchmade Barrage Tanto AXIS-Assist Knife 583BK (3.6″ blade).

  11. I really, really, really would like to work out every day for at least eight hours a day. I don’t — but only because it precludes carrying. That’s it. That’s the only reason. None other. Seriously. I mean it.

    Hey, it’s as good an excuse as any.

    Besides, I get more exercise getting out of a chair than you pump monkeys get from an hour on the Universal.

    • Yeah, boy! I doesn’t occur to a lot of people that for those of us who weight in at 275lbs. and up simply getting up and moving around moderately energetically is itself a fair workout. I mean, I do dozens of 275# leg presses every day.

  12. I do, sometimes. I can stay strapped at my gym at work. I can pocket carry my Smith 340 PD or my Smith Bodyguard .380.

  13. Not typically, because I usually lift in my garage.

    But, when I go for walks I do carry my LCP in my pocket. And I don’t carry while swimming.

  14. I carry a Walther PPS 9mm in a 5.11 fanny pack designed for carry while running. No, I don’t care that I look like a 45 year old German tourist doing so. On my workouts (anywhere from 6 to 20 miles) I encounter dogs, wildlife, and many two legged predetors. The only time I have ever had to draw a gun in self defense was when a dog came booking it off a porch to chase me. Fortunatly the owner managed to call it off moments before I was going to fire.

  15. Yes, unless I’m exercising at school. At the YMCA I carry a Glock 43 in a Trump Card holster just under my gym shorts. No spare mag though. Compared to the Glock 19 with 2 spare magazines I feel naked.

  16. I mostly just lift weights. Usually 12 ounce weights but sometimes 16. If I’m feeling really ambitious I might lift a couple of 40s. And yes, I’m carrying when I’m lifting weights.

  17. When I did weight training at Boston Sports Club in Providence, I kept my holstered Glock 19 in my backpack very close to me. No one ever questioned me about having a backpack. There were several FBI agents that worked out and I would run into them occasionally. If someone did, I was prepared to say that it contained my wallet and keys which it did.

  18. When running, a 638 worn in a cotton Kangaroo Carry shoulder holster, shoulder strap removed, worn low on my waist, with the gun strong side at 3:30. It’s a bit of a kluge, but it’s stable, light, and virtually undetectable under my jogging shorts and tucked-in t-shirt. (I just figured out how to make this work last month!)

    When doing hot yoga…nothing…yet. Not sure how to make this work while in drenched clothes, upside down in a headstand.

    BTW: Does anyone have any recommendations for a good, standard pressure .38 special defensive load for the 638?

  19. I prefer to trail run, and I often run in secluded areas that are actually fairly close to population. My feeling is that bad things are somewhat less likely to happen in the woods, but if they do, you are on your own. So I carry in a Hill People Gear Runners Kit Bag. Just enough room to carry my strap, shield and ID, phone, keys and pinch of post run snuff.


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