Wednesday, April 11, 2007

work out

So you probably don't know me very well, but if you did, you'd know that I am obsessed with exercising and eating healthy. It's the best thing you can do for yourself. Despite my love for the gym, we haven't discussed workout attire! So let's do that now.

There are a few "rules" for workout clothing that I like to stick to:

1. NO COTTON. Cotton is a four-letter word when it comes to exercising and sweating. When cotton gets wet, it stays wet. It rubs against your skin. Not to mention, it looks disgusting when it's sweaty. Try and stick to technical fabrics that work to wick the moisture off the skin--these fabrics dry very quickly and are ideal when working out.

2. COVER IT UP. Yes, we know that you have a hot bod from working out. But we don't need to see it. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not advocating wearing long pants and long sleeves when going to the gym. I love wearing shorts. But we don't need to see your butt cheeks. Save that for the club, honey.

3. GET A GOOD SPORTSBRA. Ah, one of the most important things in the world, the mechanical marvel known as the sportsbra. Make sure you get one that supports you, but in no way compresses or squeezes. It should fit comfortably, so that you barely know it's there. For gals with bigger chests, check out the brand Moving Comfort--they make a couple really good bras for the D-Cups. And stay away from cotton here, too.

4. GOOD SOCKS. Again, stay away from cotton, in a sock it's a breeding ground for blistering. And I've never been a fan of socks that come up past the ankle--it shortens the calves and makes you look stumpy.

The items I've mentioned are going to be a bit more pricey than you're average Hanes t-shirt and $10 cotton shorts. But this is one of the few areas that I advocate spending a lot of money because the quality is amazing. Check out Under Armour or Nike Dry-Fit--clothing like this is amazingly comfortable during a workout or a run. In socks especially, spending more money is a good thing. A good technical sock is going to outlast a cotton sock by years--they don't go threadbare or get holes like a cotton sock. I have synthetic socks that I have had since sophomore year...of HIGH SCHOOL...that are still great. I thought spending $7/pair was a lot of money at the time, but it was well worth it.

A few things to know about technical apparel:
-DON'T put it in the dryer. The fabric is porous because of its moisture-wicking ability, and if you put it in the dryer with a Bounce sheet, the fabric softener will clog up the pores of the garment, making it much less effective at moving moisture. After they come out of the washing machine, just hang them up. Because of the way this clothing is made, it will dry very quickly.

-You don't necessarily have to wash it before wearing it again. This stuff is kind of expensive, so most people don't go out and buy 7 outfits worth of technical apparel. That's okay. Just take your shirt into the shower with you and give it a good rinse, then hang it up. It will dry in an hour and you can wear it later in the week. Just don't do this too many times before washing it, that's pretty nasty. And I wouldn't do this with shorts because that's pretty nasty too. Just stick to things like shirts and sportsbras.

-You CAN find wicked cute workout clothes if you look in the right places. Check out Niketown on Newbury Street, Marathon Sports on Boylston Street, and City Sports, also on Boylston Street. They sell some really cute workout clothing that looks fab whether you're sweating like a man on the stairmaster, or kicking around the house on a Sunday morning.

THERE IS NO REASON THAT YOU SHOULD LOOK FRUMPY WHILE WORKING OUT. Kick those sweatpants and t-shirt to the curb and treat yourself to the good stuff.

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