When you’re just starting out, literally any clothes will suffice, just get into it!
However once you’ve formed more of a routine and are spending more and more time in the gym, looking good goes along with feeling good as well. Good clothes also help with peak performance. Sweat wicking, form fitting clothes will help you push harder and hit those personal bests.
Here are some tips from where you should spend, or save, when it comes to activewear:
Save: Tops – Cotton On are especially awesome for this ‘cheap yet still comfortable’ gym top. You can get T-shirts or singlet tops and they sweat wick while being as cheap as 20-30 dollars. It’s important to get something relatively lightweight because even on a cold day your body will heat up very, very quickly once you get going.
Splurge: Leggings – Under Armour and Skins are my recommended brands here. They stay up (who else hates pulling leggings up when they start getting loose?!!), they’re unbelievably comfortable, and they last a lot longer.
Save: Socks – Yes sweat wicking socks are great, and it’s probably not a bad idea to have a few pairs on hand (Rebel Sport are a good start) but for the majority of your collection, $2 anklet socks from Kmart are absolutely fine.
Splurge: GYM BAGS – if you’re not a teen anymore (or even if you are) and would like something actually classy that does not look like a glorified school bag, it is worth spending a little more on something that goes from gym to office to dinner in one go.
GYMTOTE are incredible for this and have absolutely gorgeous looking, roomy gym bags that double and triple in usage. Absolutely worth the money.
Inbetween: Bras – Berlei bras have fantastic, long-wearing, comfortable sports bras for around the 50 dollar mark, and you probably can get them even cheaper when they have a sale at a Bonds-branded outlet store.
Inbetween: Runners – considering if you’re wearing them a lot you will probably have to replace them every year anyway, it’s not much use to you buying $250 shoes that will only last one year. I recommend hitting up Scoopon for last-season discounts on good quality shoes.
Some shopping hacks:
- Use Afterpay if you need it now but can still pay it off within the 4 installments, however don’t go overboard! I usually only ever have two Afterpays going at once. It can get difficult to track and know when the money is coming out so pop the installments in your diary, calendar and phone to remind yourself.
- If it’s an online store, a brilliant hack is to put items in your cart and then leave them there. The company will often email you (if you have gone so far as the checkout and then left the website without finishing) the next day to give you discounts as big as 20% – this is a great way to save a bit of money.
- Hit up your physical outlet stores. They are usually in specific locations in the city (eg there is one in Essendon, Docklands and a few on Bridge Road in Melbourne), but can be out in the suburbs too. Do NOT rely on their websites, they are often clunky, badly managed and don’t have everything that’s available in-store listed. Definitely use your time and make the trip. It will be worth it once you find $5 singlet tops and $10 trackpants. You can also find last-season runners heavily discounted.
- This leads on to my next point – buy old season items. Old season clothes are usually cleared out for new season items. So grab old season of as much as you can. Usually runners are definitely the #1 item to grab as they are usually updated yearly.
The most important thing is: don’t be afraid to experiment. If you buy something that someone else loved and it doesn’t work, it’s not your fault! Just try wearing another outfit. You will find what works best for you!
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I’ll add another one here that’s specific to my preferred form of exercise. Splurge: hiking boots. They need ankle support and good grip, should be robust, have a degree of water resistance and fit like a slipper. I have never worn any boots as comfy as my Keens.
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