Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Curse of the Activewear

Fitness is a fashion show--just like life!
I buy a lot of clothes.  I buy too many clothes, and I admit that here often.  I'm working on it, I swear I am, but my brain keeps foiling my plans!

I know that I don't need more skirts.  I know that though I would like more dresses, I don't need them.  And I know that with a little ingenuity, I can create new outfits with the clothes that I already have without spending a penny.  I know all of this.

But then there's the activewear.

When I was in high school, I used to work out in old, worn-out t-shirts.  I had no problem with that because I was either working out in my basement to a Denise Austin aerobics video, or I was in a 6am step aerobics class with a bunch of 40-year-olds.  I had a cute little outfit I wore for physical education class (where I never actually exerted myself enough to sweat), but otherwise I just didn't need much.

Fast forward to the present day, and I'm going to run a 5k next Sunday, and my 9th half marathon the Sunday after that.  I log about 20-25 miles per week depending on my work schedule, so that means that unless I want to do laundry every day (I don't want to do laundry every day), I need to have a good rotation of activewear.  I also now realize the value of having well-made active wear, which means that the old t-shirts don't cut it anymore.

I need clothes that wick so it's not too heavy when I start sweating; I need clothes that don't chafe me (or at least chafe me less); I need clothes that fit well, are long enough, and don't ride up my hips; I need clothes for hot humid summer days and freezing cold winter days.  Basically, it's a lot of stuff that I need.

I've got a good collection going.  I can usually wash my running clothes every other week, depending on how many days I've run.  The problem now is, I would actually like to look cute as well as high-performance, and Old Navy has gotten into the activewear game in a big way.

I used to just go to Target, buy whatever Champion had on sale, and call it good. It's well-made, inexpensive, it  works.  But they don't really have any fun colors so I was wearing nothing but black all the time, which also makes it potentially easier to get hit by a car.  Old Navy, on the other hand, realizes that I not only want to look like a pretty girl instead of a goth girl, but they've come up with a line of running tops that make me look thinner by having built in panels that hold in my fat bits and make me look like I have a waist!  Turns out, I love feeling pretty when I run--who knew?

Tiny Pocket!
Not only do they make me look thinner, but they have tiny pockets where I can stash my running treats and/or lip gloss!  Gah!  At first I bought one of these tops, but then I loved it so much that everything else I already own looks like crap.  Oh, I need some lip gloss!  Nope I'm wearing that crappy, old top that doesn't have a pocket!  I hate my life!  This is what goes on in my head.  So I bought two more, and a jacket, and another pair of shorts.  I also bought a pair of pants, but I'm going to return those. I look like an Old Navy commercial every time I go running, and I will seriously evangelize this activewear to anyone who has the misfortune to ask me about it.

Once again, it seems that this hobby of mine is draining my finances dry.  Yeah I save by not having a gym membership, but perhaps I'm just using "health" and "fitness" as an excuse to buy outfits.


  1. That Old Navy top is TOO CUTE! I have a wristcuff from Lululemon that I use to carry stuff around in, but a pocket would be even handier. I think that any hobby has the potential to cost a lot of money, especially one where you have the opportunity to look cute.

    Don't feel bad about it! It's not like you're splurging on Stella McCartney for Adidas activewear. Old Navy stuff is cheap, so it's actually *more* frugal to buy lots of stuff from there. Surely. ;)

  2. I cannot bring myself to spend money on activewear. That said, I'm not usually working out in public either! I should take your lead and buy cuter yoga pants are in need of an upgrade!

  3. Yeah man, I look so stupid when I run, I need all the help I can get.