As many of you know, I’ve been an avid ice dancer for several years. I started ice skating with Brooke when she was little, and as the years went by I fell in love. When I started, I learned basic jumps and spins but I switched to ice dance about eight years ago because I saw that I could still progress as a skater but would be less likely to get hurt because ice dancing does not include jumps which heighten the risk of becoming badly injured, and because several of my skating friends are well into their late 70’s and early 80’s and are still able to enjoy the sport.
It was ice skating that pulled me out of my “work out doldrums”; my former husband and I had been “gym rats” for years, but I had gotten so burned out I couldn’t abide spending any time at all in the gym lifting weights or walking on treadmills. I wanted something that had a richer and fuller purpose. For me, the only purpose was to stay slim and it seemed a so much a bitter pill that I did less and less.
You may recall I returned to fitness by walking 20 minutes (or more) per day. As time went on, I found deep enjoyment in yoga, and finally, one day, while watching my daughter skate, I got the idea that it might be fun for me to do as well. Skating lead me back to the ballet studio, and to the weight loss doctor. Having a sport I loved inspired me to want to do as much as I could to be my best.
And, now, I have found my way back to the gym for an hour or two a week. One of the things that makes the gym just a little more palatable for me is finding cute work out wear, and I’ve just purchased a few items for my collection, plus, I have a few thoughts on putting together attractive fitness looks for the “mature” woman.
I have had ups and downs with body love; and certainly as I’ve aged, I am very aware that parts of my body don’t look like they once did. Some things I choose to cover, like my tummy; it’s not as firm as it once was; it didn’t bounce back after pregnancy. And then there are my arms…the skin isn’t as taught as it once was, and I’d probably cover them if it weren’t so darn hot here. At the same time, I love the cute crop tops that are prominent on the fitness scene, so I have been working on styling them as I actually still enjoy wearing contemporary fitness wear.
A couple of thoughts on elegance and fitness wear. I tend toward a more classic, elegant style, and have found for my personal taste, I prefer a solid color legging in darker colors, for the most part. I have found that bold prints and florals, while pretty, aren’t always the most flattering for me. That said, I do like them on other people, so if you’ve found a beautiful print or floral legging, and you love them, kick my suggestions to the curb and rock what you love.
I use a capsule method for my workout wear just to keep things easy, since I am in active wear at least once a day; sometimes twice. I prefer to shop quality, though I’ve purchased $50 Champion active wear that lasted for almost 10 years, It’s just easier to be able to grab a pair of black or dark leggings and any top from my collection and be good to go.
Here are a few items I have in my rotation:
- Tank tops and t-shirts from Target. I usually get them in black or white, though if I see a print I like, I pick that up as well, so long as it looks good with black, brown or navy leggings. Some days I don’t feel like wearing a sports bra, so having some nice tshirts and tanks to add into the rotation is great. I find Target T-shirts to be a good value, and they often come in a range of colors. I buy them in my size (xs) and often a size up so I have some tunic length as well as hip length.
- As noted above, my legging collection currently consists of the color black.
- Fun sports bras and tops. I have been getting fun sports bras and tops from Athleta, Sweaty Betty and Carbon 38. I currently have two black cropped tops, one white, one multi colored, one navy with white piping and a longline black top with a subtle design I got from Marshals several years ago.
- Jackets. Jackets are my jam, specifically because they allow me to cover my stomach a bit so I can still wear a sports bra and show a little midriff but be able to cover a little at the same time too. Plus, if I’m feeling a bit self conscious about my arms, the jacket covers them, and if I am self conscious about my bum, I simply tie my jacket around my waist.
- Cardigan sweaters and tunics: I will often add a cardigan or tunic for a cute post work out look; I love being able to switch my sports bra out for a shirt, add a sweater and booties and have a street ready look.
- I look for items made of net or with net insets to cover trouble spots while still looking stylish.
Now it’s your turn, do you have any tips or tricks you use to look chic in workout clothes? How do you feel about wearing workout wear in non-workout situations? Be sure to share your thoughts in the comment section below and hop around and visit the link up!
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