If you go to the gym, more often than not you will see at least one person there who obviously doesn’t fit in with the standard workout dress code. Yes, working out isn’t a runway show, but if I see another person working out in a collared polo shirt and jeans I might go crazy. Wearing proper workout apparel isn’t just about looking like you know what you are doing at the gym; it also plays a vital role in maximizing your performance and comfort while you work out. The great thing about workout apparel is that there are thousands of companies that work tirelessly to create the perfect apparel for a variety of levels of individuals. Whether you have a limited budget or can buy top-of-the-line apparel, there is a company that creates the ideal workout apparel for your specific needs. Below are some simple rules to live by when selecting your workout apparel.
Start With Proper Footwear: I can’t emphasize the importance of this rule enough. Proper footwear can make a huge difference in your performance and comfort throughout your workout, and more importantly, can prevent injury both in the short and long term. The right shoes for you will depend on your personal routine. If you are a runner, look for shoes that are light and provide ample support for your running motion. Running in shoes that are meant for basketball will only hurt your joints and slow you down. If you are more interested in cross fit, buy a pair of shoes that support both lateral and forward movement. Finally, if you go to the gym solely for lifting weights, find a pair of shoes that provide extra support for the large amount of pressure you will put on your feet as you lift. These shoes don’t need to be designed for running or lateral movement since the only movement you will be doing will be walking from one machine to the next.
Let Your Shirt Breath:Hopefully, when you workout you sweat. There is nothing more uncomfortable than having a heavy, wet shirt on while you workout. To avoid this situation, find a shirt that is designed to wick sweat from your body and keep you cool throughout your entire workout. There are hundreds of workout shirts on the market today that are designed for various workout conditions. When selecting your perfect shirt, keep in mind what you plan on doing to workout. Runners will need lighter, more breathable shirts than someone who only lifts weights. This goes for if you workout indoors or in a gym as well. There are plenty of shirts that can keep you warm or cool depending on what elements you plan on battling during your workout.
Leave the Sweat Pants at Home: The infamous apparel of Rocky may have worked for him, but they don’t fit in the gym today. With all of the new technology in workout apparel, wearing sweat pants will only slow you down and leave you looking like you haven’t been to a gym in decades. Instead, wear a pair of shorts that compliment your workout routine. If you plan on running outdoors, find a pair of jogging pants that can keep you warm and dry in the winter, and cool in the summer. A proper fit for your jogging pants will be loose enough that it doesn’t hinder your running motion while tight enough to not bunch and slow you down.
Base Layers: Base layers are a relatively new addition to the world of workout apparel. These ultra tight and highly advanced shirts and shorts help you stay comfortable throughout the duration of your workout. Often referred to as compression wear, base layers replace your cotton underwear and undershirts that become heavy and uncomfortable the longer you work out. Base layers also help keep you warm or cool depending on the weather conditions you plan to workout in. Wear compression shorts under you shorts or jogging pants to avoid rashing, bunching, and sweat build up that can hinder your workout potential.