The New “Power Suit”

The New “Power Suit”

by: Sandra Mahoney

There’s something to be said for the ‘power suit’. The name alone speaks volumes. Think confidence, strength, attention getting. Now apply the same principle to workout apparel. What personality does a ratty t-shirt and baggy sweatpants convey? What about track pants and a sporty top? Which says coach potato or power walker? It’s a fact, attractive and right-sized clothing make you feel good as you continue to workout.
Gone are the days of the 70’s sport shorts and knee-high tube socks and the 80’s super tight and flaw-finding spandex leggings (which today most women run from not in). There is a fashionable middle ground between too tight and too baggy. You don’t have to be model-perfect to wear attractive, stylish and practical fitness clothes. But, the right workout apparel like stylish tracksuits can motivate and build confidence by making you feel sexy and strong. They can also transform into sensible pieces you can just as easily wear in your ‘spare time’. For the latter, mix actual sportswear pieces with stylish casual items. A nice pair of sweat pants or track pants that are not excessively baggy or form fitting either – try a pair of bootcut low rise yoga pants with a fitted t-shirt or trendy vest. Finish off the look with the perfect cross-trainers, running or walking shoes.
When it’s cold outside, you want to keep warm between workouts. Make sure your choices include thicker materials, such as fleece and cotton lycra mixes that wick sweat away from your body, and layers that you can peel off as you heat up while exercising. The reason, cotton absorbs moisture easily and holds heat in. It’s a natural fabric so it is good for sensitive skins or those allergic to synthetic fabrics. But, remember, cotton won’t keep you warm once it gets wet. Lycra gives the fabric stretch, enabling more freedom of movement. It also helps garments maintain their shape after washing.
That said, what workout clothes fit your active lifestyle? After all, now that your body is toning and tightening, you’d like your exercise apparel to show off the results of those tough workouts. Whatever your fitness activity — from hiking to spinning – reward yourself with practical clothes that you’re comfortable in and motivates you to get the job done.
What’s a girl to wear this season?

Choose loose, comfy, no binding clothing that allows you to bend and twist in a variety of positions.
Avoid buttons and zippers which may be uncomfortable when lying down.
Bring an additional layer with you since you will often remain motionless and your body will quickly cool down.


If you’re quick to heat up, start off with a long sleeve t-shirt over a tank top that you can quickly remove while in action. The more skin you expose the faster you cool down, so tank tops and shorts are perfect.
Choose fitted clothes instead of loose, flapping clothing that can cause chafing and discomfort or worse get caught in equipment.
Choose a comfortable fitness bra with no clasps or straps to provide support and help wick sweat away. The right fitness bra is an essential layer for even small-busted women.

Pavement Pounding-Mama:

Dress for the weather. Your first layer should be comfortable and sweat wicking, so you stay nice and dry. Start with the right sports bra and athletic top.
A secondary layer for insulation. Long sleeve athletic shirts with a cotton lycra mix for warmer days or a thin microfleece for colder days.
Your outerwear should be water proof and wind proof. Look for Goretex windbreakers or similar breathable jackets with an integrated hood, pockets for accessories and vents for cooling off
Mittens (no gloves, mittens are warmer), hat, socks and glasses. Remember you lose 25% of your body heat through your head.

About The Author

Sandry is mother of 3 and co-founder of a website devoted to helping mothers rediscover their favorite hobbies like travel, fitness and girls night out.

This article was posted on December 13, 2004