First, let me say that my go-to exercise outfit is long leggings (sometimes called tights) and a tank. I rarely wear capri-length leggings and you'll never see me in shorts. I would love the freedom and range of motion that shorts provide but I just don't feel comfortable in them right now, and that is something I'm working on. My pregnancies left me with stretch marks on my legs and I know that I shouldn't care at all, but I feel best when they're covered. Now because of my most recent skin issues I also have scars, so for the foreseeable future- it's pants for this girl!
There are a lot of options out there for athletic leggings. When I'm shopping I look for two main selling points: 1. moisture wicking, so that I'm not bogged down and nasty feeling when I sweat, and 2. thickness, so that when I am in motion or folded over the butt of the leggings are not see-through. There are so many great brands to choose from ranging from cheap and inexpensive, to high-end and high-tech...my faves fall somewhere in the lower-middle of this range! I, like all women everywhere, LOVE Target. Target has great reasonably priced options for active wear, and their C9 brand actually ranks really high on a lot of lists- most recently Good Housekeeping ranked the C9 Embrace Must Have tights as the #1 legging on the market beating out brands like Nike, Lululemon, and Under Armour! Target is great because you can often find sweet deals in the clearance racks and use the cartwheel app for an extra discount. Another little tip for teens and petite women- shop the kids section!!! If you're size 6 or smaller you should check out the kids section every now and then! You'll pay half the price and still get pretty decent product. The thickness of the leggings and fit may differ slightly, but this is still a great option if you're just looking for something inexpensive to wear for at home work outs.
|C9 sports bra from Target- got on clearance for $8- no make up and Paw Patrol on in the background! My life.|
|XL kids leggings from Target! Great for aerobics or a run, but wouldn't wear for serious yoga or pilates practice.|
One of my favorite brands is 90 degrees, I love it for so many reasons! It's available on Amazon prime so I can get it shipped quick, its super affordable, and the quality is amazing! Most of the power flex yoga pants are around $19.99, but if you're not picky on color/print you can often find some reduced to $9.99-- which is insane for the quality! The leggings are thick and never see-through, but breath really well! Check them out here! I wear these for any and all work outs!
|I wear a size small and am typically a 2/4 in street clothes. I love bright colors!!|
Recently I bought my first tanks from 90 degrees and I've been really pleased with them, too. They're thin, but moisture wicking but do not have a built-in bra- so a sports bra is needed. Again, super affordable as this one that I purchased is a lovely $12.99.
|shirt from the link above|
|me today!! Wearing C9 sports bra and 90 degree tank|
Another option for quality active wear at a reasonable price is Fabletics. A warning, though, Fabletics is an auto-ship style agreement where you commit to buying each month unless you log into your account and skip a month. If you are busy, or forgetful like me- this can be dangerous and you can end up racking up charges pretty quickly. If you're responsible and can keep up with it- it's an awesome option. The products I've purchased have all be of an amazing quality, super comfortable, and have lasted a long time.
|Fabletics tank with built-in bra support|
For all my yogis out there if you're serious about your practice you may find that it's worth it to invest in a few staple pieces that are higher quality. My bestie Caitrin swears by the Lululemon power y tank, and won't do hot yoga without her Lululemon Luon leggings. One of the perks you get for the money is that Lululemon is designed to be worn and stay put. You wont find yourself in down dog having to adjust your tank top or pull up your leggings- if your practice a lot, this is huge! I do have one Lulu top that I love for this exact reason! Another highly regarded brand for yoga wear is Alo yoga, some of my favorite insta-yogis rock Alo all of the time. I've ordered an Alo tank, and I'm super excited to try it out soon!
|Wunder Under luon leggings|
|power y tank|
|my Lululemon top- double straps and built-in bra keep "the girls" locked in tight so there is no movement during flow and inversions|
|dri-FIT knit tank|
|Nike Power Epic Lux|
The shoes that I wear for most of my training are the Asics Gel Noosa Tri 10- they're AWESOME! They're designed as a triathalon shoe so they can be used for running, cross training, basically most athletic activity! I pronate really severely when I run and I get great stability from these shoes without feeling like they're too thick or heavy! When I teach Zumba I wear a different shoe, a New Balance court shoe that has very little tread- this helps me move and pivot easier when I'm dancing!
My old work out buddy Christina, who is the runner I wish I could be loves her Altra running shoes! She's had multiple knee surgeries and still manages to kick butt!
To complete my look I almost always use a headband to keep my hair out of my face, even if it's up in a pony tail. I have a large collection of headbands because I can never quite find the perfect one that wont slip, isn't too loose or too tight. Show me the perfect headband, and I'll be yours forever. It's my elusive holy grail! Now that you've seen my head to toe choices I'd love to know yours! Like I said, I'm always in the market ;) sound off in the comments with any questions or suggestions! Thanks to my friends for their input! xoxo Layne