Articles from June 2009

Workout Clothes

While it may seem fine to go straight to the gym from the office and work out in whatever you happen to be wearing, you’ll be surprised to discover just how important workout clothes are and how much they can help you get the most out of your exercise.  Workout clothes have come a long way over the last several years, and new developments make the clothes as comfortable as they are practical.

The two most important elements of your workout clothes are your shoes and your sport bra.  Without these two items, none of the rest of the workout clothes really matter.  Shoes should be specially designed for the type of activity you plan to do.  You may need more than one pair of shoes if you do multiple exercises, or at least a really good pair of cross trainers.  You should try the shoes on before you buy them, wearing the socks you plan to wear when you work out.  Blow the budget on shoes – if you don’t have a good foundation, you’ll be more likely to be injured and not get anywhere with your fitness.

Your sport bra should also fit well, not too tight, not too loose.  It should be make of a moisture-wicking material that keeps you dry.  You should try on the bra and move around a lot – move your arms, bend over, jump up and down.  Make sure the bra holds you comfortably with very little bounce and that it doesn’t rub or chafe the skin under your arms or around your midsection.

Once you have the foundation of your workout clothes, the rest of the ensemble is up to personal preference.  There are pants, capris, and shorts all made of moisture wicking material; there are tanks, shirts, and sweatshirts as well.  It’s important when exercising to dress in layers so that you can peel off a layer if you get to warm.  Make sure you have workout clothes for all seasons.  As with your sport bra, try the workout clothes on and make sure everything fits well, moves with you, doesn’t bind you or limit your movement, and doesn’t chafe you anywhere.

If you exercise outdoors, you should consider workout clothes in bright colors or with reflective material for safety purposes.  If you are out jogging early in the morning before the sun is up, it’s important that your workout clothes allow you to be seen by early-morning traffic.

Finally, pay attention to the care instructions for your workout clothes.  There is no sense in investing money in workout clothes and then ruining them the first time you wash them or dry them incorrectly.