If you’re starting to think about getting in shape for real this time, or find yourself getting sick of that gross old shirt from college and worn out sneakers, it’s probably time for an upgrade to your workout wardrobe. But your fashion choices will be most successful if you take into account the type of workout you’re doing—from cycling and jogging to yoga, pilates or weightlifting, different workouts call for different gear. Here’s a quick guide to what you need, no matter how you choose to stay fit.
When it comes to running, whether that’s on the treadmill or the trail, running shoes are key. These guys need to be replaced more often, then you might think. If you’re running nearly every day, you’ll need to replace your trusty sneakers about every six months. Check out these workout shoes for women, if it’s time for a replacement.
Additionally, a well-rounded running wardrobe consists of a combination of running leggings and shorts, for variations in weather, as well as a few well-fitted sports bras, running t-shirts and tanks, as well as a lightweight sweatshirt or windbreaker for running in cool weather.
For weight training, you’ll want shoes with a dense, hard sole, that offer some solid support for when you’re lifting. Running shoes, won’t absorb the impact as easily and you may be at risk of injury. Keep it simple in terms of clothing—things like leggings, gym shorts, and a stylish colorful sports bra always look great—or go for a fitted moisture-wicking tank for more coverage.
Depending on the type of yoga you’re doing—hot or basic Hatha—you’ll have different gear needs. For one, you’ll want to invest in a high-quality mat with a good grip. Mats should be replaced if they start to hang onto smells, even after a wash or become slippery and worn out.
For hot yoga styles, like Bikram, look toward moisture-wicking shorts and sports bras, or fitted spandex leggings. Yoga, when done outdoors or in an unheated room, calls for a fitted tank top or yoga pants, which can be either cotton or spandex—whichever you prefer. In both cases, clothes should be fitted and promote easy movement. Those practicing barre or pilates can wear the same type of gear.
For group fitness classes like Zumba or other types of dance, you’ll want to look for clothes with stretchy fabric, medium compression and maximum mobility, enabling you to get the most out of your workout, moving, shaking and more. Your running shoes should be fine here, providing mobility with that flexible sole.
When to Get Rid of Your Gear
If you have a home gym, or just like to lift some weights or follow along with a fitness video in the comfort of your own home, you may not realize it, but things like your exercise ball, bands and more wear out. Be sure to replace any plastic pieces of equipment every two years or so, or when they become discolored or brittle. Things like sweatbands should be replaced as they become stretched out, and helmet and hats should be replaced should they become loose or damaged.
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