Clothing for wearing to to the gym is taking over clothing we wear everywhere else… but is this entirely acceptable?
Wrong place, wrong time
Activewear is designed for, you know, exercise. Cheeky coffee after your work-out? Okay. Lounging around the house? Whatever you like. But in the office, doing the groceries, at dinner? Time to jump out of the gym clothes.
Compression tights might be great to prevent chafing and to aid your recovery . . . but they’re doing you know aesthetic favours if the front of your trousers look like a butcher’s shop window. Same goes for low-cut singlets that flash more cleavage and sideboob than a bikini model on Instagram.
Sweating it up
You’re looking for a material that wicks the sweat away from your body, not something that retains the moisture and causes rashes and chafing. Cotton might feel nice and light but it traps your sweat — invest a little extra for a lycra-polyester blend ‘performance fabric’ instead.
Your toots undergo some serious punishment during a workout, so you want to house them in the right shoes. You might not mind your tatty old Converse getting sweaty but they’re not going to provide adequate support, and you don’t want to subject your designer trainers to the gym, so get fitted for a serious sports shoe that suits your workout.
Wearing the right size is crucial to both performance and appearance — too big and it’ll chafe it all the wrong places and look like you’ve borrowed your dad’s gear, too small and your movement will be constricted and you’ll like your activewear was produced by Durex. As with everything in your wardrobe, fit is pivotal.
Another matter of comfort and style — tackling that 6.00am jog in the depths of winter wearing nothing more than a tee and shorts isn’t conducive to performance and shivering certainly isn’t a flattering look, especially when there’s a range of stylish slim-fit tracksuit pants and jackets available.
If you’re not confident navigating the fluorescent technicolour labyrinth of geometric patterns in hot pink and neon green, play it safe with simple, masculine, muted hues like grey, black, navy and white. Leave the lurid flouro lycra to overweight middle-aged cyclists squeezing into their cycling kits.