woman working out

Looking Good While Working Out, Does it Matter?

Most people get ready for a workout knowing that they are going to get sweaty and gross. Because of that, they may not put a lot of effort into their appearance. However, that mindset may just be what is holding them back.

According to an article published by WebMD, looking good while working out can help you stay driven and self-assured. As a matter of fact, it can help increase your performance. One performance expert interviewed said that a cute outfit can be the motivation to get out and exercise in a public place, like at the gym, an exercise class, or park. But what is “flattering?” That is what many readers would like to know.

“Flattering” is Subjective

The expert who was interviewed for the WebMD article suggests that women wear predominantly black clothes to the gym. Black sports bras, black spandex, and black t-shirts with hints of lime green, soft pink, and shades of blue. For those who are not comfortable with their bodies, she suggests that “baggy clothes” are ideal. Unfortunately, this is where WebMD makes itself yet another source that fat-shames women who are just looking for fitness tips. Frustrating, considering it is such a well-known source for medical information, but not surprising.

While it may be true that having workout clothes that make you feel good can lead to better performance, the clothing choices are decidedly not. To tell someone that they should wear black, baggy clothes because their body shape differs from what society has deemed “ideal” is a form of fat-shaming. It is on par with telling someone not to eat a cookie because you have decided that they are too overweight. It is unconstructive at best and insulting at worst. In-Style has far more useful and inclusive gym style tips.

‘Show Off Your Curves’ and Other Good Advice

No one should be told that it is best to hide their bodies. Regardless of shape or size, our bodies are beautiful and capable of tremendous things. Luckily, more clothing lines are beginning to embrace body positivity. Lines like Le-Vel Thrive Gear create gym wear that invites people to show off their bodies, not conceal them.

Unlike WebMD’s advice of wearing black and hoping no one notices you, InStyle suggests wearing bright sports bras. Not only will they show off your assets, but they are also fun to mix with other bright clothes.

Many women consider some areas of their bodies to be “problem areas.” One of the easiest ways to get out of that mindset is in the clothes you choose. Seeing those areas in clothing that flatters them will completely transform how you see — and appreciate — your body. If you don’t like your hips, butt, or love handles, try a top that is tight in the chest and flares towards the hips. According to Le-Vel reviews, it is a flattering cut that pulls the eyes up while concealing areas that you may not feel comfortable having on display.

InStyle also has suggestions about which type of pants to wear in order to feel your best. While you can never go wrong with black, if black just isn’t your color, try out a bright pant that highlights the thinnest point of your leg. If you’re tall, an above-the-knee crop might be the best length for you. If you’re shorter, try a bootcut style that flares at the ankle and nips at the knee.

Feel Good, Kick Ass

Though WebMD may have been off on some of its advice, it does offer some wise parting words. For one, the author suggests not wearing an outfit that makes you feel uncomfortable. Wearing something that makes you feel bad about yourself is a huge energy zapper and you likely won’t be very productive.

While it’s important to feel good, don’t forget to dress for the activity you will be participating in. Long shirts can get in the way of gym equipment; loose clothing is not practical for yoga; overdressing can cause you to overheat and lose energy.

The next time you’re getting dressed for the gym, remember that you’re better than wearing black head-to-toe and fading into the background. When you look good, you feel good and when you feel good, you can smash your goals — inside and outside of the gym.

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