» Outfit Yourself to Get Fit

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John Brhel is a freelance writer from upstate New York that enjoys picking apart life's idiosyncrasies and listening to Huey Lewis & the News.

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If by chance you bought your girlfriend/wife/mistress a pair of Reebok’s EasyTone sneakers hoping she’d end up looking like Carissa Rosario, you should know a few things.

Dress for the workout you want

First, Reebok has recently agreed to pay $25 million in a settlement due to the unsupported claims that the shoes actually help users get in shape faster. Second, you should probably subscriber to Adbusters because you’re too gullible of a consumer. No shoe is going to help you get faster than any other. These women might have well as worn Crocs. Okay, maybe that’s a stretch, but without proper diet and exercise, I don’t care if you’re wearing Michael Jordan’s lucky jersey; you’re just kidding yourself.

It is important, however, to dress appropriately to ensure maximum results in your workouts.

If you want to look great in your street clothes, you’ve got to start with outfitting yourself with proper workout attire. Think about all of the movements involved in working out. Whether you’re sprinting or doing squats, proper range of motion is crucial. Wearing tight, constricted clothes will hamper your ability to stretch to achieve full range of motion and stretch all of the necessary muscles involved in any physical activity.

On the other end of the spectrum, dressing like you’re going to work out with Lil Wayne can be just as bad; baggy, loose fitting track pants and treadmills just don’t mix.

Workout attire falls under relatively strict guidelines for a reason. In order to achieve proper range of motion, air circulation and comfort, you need to dress for the occasion. Do you wear jeans to work? Unless it’s casual Friday or you actually work at a cool job like a tattoo parlor or something, you’re probably wearing some kind of uniform (a suit and tie is a uniform) and jeans are out of the question. You should approach fitness apparel as you do work apparel.

If you take your physical fitness seriously as you do your job, ditch your Levi’s and throw on some Livestrong shorts. Sure, dudes in spandex look funny, but at least they’re conscious of the importance of proper dress and range of motion.

Want to know the best way to stay soggy and weighted down during a workout? Wear cotton! You’re guaranteed to hasten any physical activity by wearing cotton of any kind. Really though, no matter what  brand you wear, be sure it’s made of some synthetic fiber like polypropylene. This type of material wicks moisture away from your body rather than hold it in, leaving you with some much drier workout clothes.

You can leave the penny loafers and Vans at home too. Proper footwear is essential to working out, whether you’re running for miles or playing basketball.  Choose the right kind of shoe for the activity you’re participating in. If you’re running, wear shock-absorbing sneakers that provide cushioning for your feet and help to keep them aligned. If you’re hiking, make sure you’ve got a waterproof boot with good traction and ankle support.

While it’s true that you can sport the most fitness-ready outfit in the world and still look like Jabba the Hutt on a bad day, dressing appropriately is crucial to achieving results in anyone’s fitness regimen. The benefits that proper exercise apparel provide outdo any cool points you might gain for wearing Timberlands and a jean jacket to the gym.

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