Workout clothes are about a lot more than keeping up with the latest fads. There are a number of reasons why proper exercise apparel is essential to getting the most out of your workout.
For one thing, exercise gear is especially designed to wick away sweat. If you’re doing anything resembling a serious workout, then your pores should be erupting like Mount Vesuvius just a few minutes in. Without the right gear, then all that sweat on your skin will be unbearable. Workout clothes tend to be durable, surviving all the heavy use your body subjects it to in the gym. You also need to maximize the comfort of your workout gear, because if you’re feeling pain or irritation while exercising, then you’re bound to distract yourself from your routine and compromise the results. Standard, non-workout clothes have a tendency to restrict your range of motion, which is the last thing you need when trying to push your body to its limits. So with all this in mind, workout clothes are a clear and obvious necessity. But what particular articles do you need for a complete your workout wardrobe? Here are five workout essentials.
1 - Technical T-Shirt
This incredible piece of apparel is representative of what makes workout clothes so important. It allows for an increased range of motion, wicks away sweat, and provides maximum comfort during a stint at the gym. The absorbent material will keep sweat off your body and prevent painful chafing, and the garment will never lose its original shape, no matter how many times it is worn and washed. These shirts are especially important for runners or outdoor enthusiasts, as the fabric provides UV protection against the sun’s most penetrative rays. Some brands are even anti-odor, meaning you can re-wear the shirt before tossing it in the wash.
2 - Sports Bra
This is of course necessary only for the ladies, but it is of such vital importance that it deserves a spot on this list. The straps of standard bras have a tendency to slip down your shoulders while you’re working out, and nobody likes to have to stop constantly to readjust. Sports bras also do an excellent job of keeping everything in place, limiting chest movement and preventing pain. The structure of sports bras means that the weight is kept off the shoulders and distributed along the length of the back. If you’ve gotten used to working out without one, you’ll be amazed at what a difference it makes.
3 - Training Socks
You don’t have to be a lifelong exercise junkie to know that feet sweat, feet chafe, and feet are prone to blisters. This is why they deserve special care to prevent any of a number of persistent problems. Training socks wick sweat away, avoiding that sopping-wet feel you might often notice between your toes. They also have padding in delicate areas to prevent the onset of blisters. We often overlook the well-being of our feet, but any seasoned fitness enthusiast could tell you just how far back a nasty blister can set back a training regiment.
4 - Gym Shoes
Shoes are just as important as socks when it comes to keeping your feet comfortable during a workout. Footwear that is too big or small can cause debilitating, workout-ruining pain. Slippery or overly bulky shoes, meanwhile, can limit your movement and make you feel clumsy in the gym. The ideal workout shoe should be comfortable, well-sized, and with proper grip on the soles to prevent slipping. The last thing you want is a footwear-related accident that keeps you out of the gym.
5 - Leggings
There’s a reason so many women, and an increasing number of men, opt for leggings when they head to the gym: they’re remarkably comfortable. They offer complete freedom of movement, and most have special sweat-wicking properties, making chafing a thing of the past. Their breathability keeps your legs cool, and yet they stave off those pernicious breezes that can chill your bare skin when you’re wearing shorts. It is important, of course, to get the pair of leggings that is right for you. A pair that is too big will have you constantly tugging at your sides during your workout, while a pair that is too tight can be painful. Ultimately, an adjustable waistband is your best bet. High-waisted leggings are also a good idea, because they won't slide down during the more active portions of your routine.