The new year often brings the intention to lose weight and get fit, and this requires a Signature Wardrobe Exercise Outfit for Newbies. You could just wear any old thing, but you will feel more committed and are more likely to keep going if you have a dedicated outfit for this purpose. It should be beautiful and inspiring, but not too expensive because when you start exercising regularly, you start slimming down surprisingly quickly. That’s when you need to start upping the ante as your body becomes accustomed to that level of activity.
If you are overweight or haven’t exercised regularly for some time, it’s a good idea to see a doctor to screen for medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney diseases, diabetes and cancer. These conditions may be exacerbated by unexpected over-exertions, and should be adequately controlled before you start a new exercise program. Once you get the go-ahead, start gently, gradually increasing your level of activity so that you don’t injure yourself.
The easiest type of exercise program for newbies is to start is walking around the streets where you live (it’s relatively low impact, but you do need to get your heart rate up to see results). I am already seeing a lot of people out in a variety of exercise outfits ranging from the brand new state of the art gear down to daggy old track pants and t-shirts.
I’m in midsummer, in an outer metropolitan area, so I’ll be looking for moisture-wicking, lightweight, light coloured clothes that reflect the sunlight. Or as I get fitter, and the walking habit becomes entrenched, I might buy clothes with a Sun Protection Factor. I’ll be wearing sun cream, a hat and sunglasses. I will probably be walking in the early morning to avoid the heat.
Those of you in midwinter should focus on layering. Again moisture-wicking close to the skin, an insulating layer in the middle and a weather protecting outer layer. You’ll need a light jacket, a hat, and maybe gloves. Try it out to see how you go, but if you get too warm drop a layer. The temperature is warmer in developed urban areas than the countryside so you may not need as many layers.
Regardless of the outdoor conditions, your outfit has three important functions to fulfil:
- Comfort: not too tight or loose, not chafing, riding up or sliding down.
- Not embarrassing in any way: not too tight or loose, no stains, tears or wardrobe malfunctions waiting to happen.
- Temperature regulating: not too hot or cold.
If it makes you feel a bit sassy, that’s good too. It will help keep you motivated to leave the house every day.
Exercise clothes are often limited in their shapes and colours, so you may need to buy the one you hate the least. Look for garments with flat seams to minimise chafing, and high visibility detailing.
For the moment, put all thoughts of those skinny women in their bright fashionable bodycon leggings and tank tops out of your mind. Getting to that size is going to happen overnight. You need to focus on where you are right now, and that means comfort.
Go to a lingerie store for a bra fitting; a good supportive sports bra minimises bounce which will make walking more comfortable and allow you to build up speed:
- The chest band should be broad and supportive.
- The straps should have little or no vertical stretch.
- The armholes should be large and allow plenty of movement for when you get those arms pumping.
- The clasps and seams should be thin and flat so they don’t chafe.
Go to a sports shoe store and discuss your needs with an assistant. Have a fitting and try the shoes on (remember you are looking for comfort). As you start exercising, and your blood gets moving) you will probably find that your feet swell as much as half a shoe size so bear this in mind. It is worth paying a little extra for a high-quality walking shoe that supports your ankles and cushions your heels to minimise injuries. If you wear them every day, they will be serviceable for around six months/300 – 600 miles (483 – 966 km), but you would be better to get two pairs so they each get a day off to dry out properly.
Buy some breathable moisture-wicking sports socks while you are at it. Thick socks may be more comfortable, but make sure you wear them when you try the shoes to make sure they aren’t too tight.
Aside from the weather accessories discussed above, you could consider an armband to hold your iPod (though for safety’s sake you should still be able to hear what is going on around you).
Your activity tracker or pedometer (of course) and your heart rate monitor if you are using one.
If you are starting out slow with short walks around your neighbourhood you won’t need to carry water – just drink a glass before leaving and when you get back. As you get to the half-hour walk mark, that’s when you need to taking water with you.
Any particular supports or strapping you may need to protect your joints, for example, knees.
You shouldn’t go out wearing makeup, but pulling your hair back into a smooth ponytail might help you feel more dignified when that bodycon woman runs past you, silent as an owl, and mysteriously sweat-free.
This post has described a walking outfit for exercise newbies. As time passes, and you walk more, you will learn what is best for you. And in a few months, you might start other sporting activities that have different requirements for exercise newbies.