Workout Clothes: What's the Best for Working Out?

September 03, 2020

You are the captain of your ship when it comes to your body and how you choose to keep it in good shape so that it can continue to float properly through life without drowning. But that ship of yours is not just skin and bones. You are decorated by the clothing that you hit the fitness gym with, or that you run around your local park in.

To properly prepare for a morning lifting bulky barbells, an afternoon sprinting on the treadmill, or an evening doing your dance class, you will need workout clothes that you can actually work out in, not just some t-shirt and old basketball shorts because they were the first thing visible when heading out the door. We’re talking actual workout clothes that were crafted to perform at their best to benefit our bodies that we depend on daily.

Let's find out which elements of workout clothes will be the most beneficial to you.  

Modern performance activewear improves your workout in ways that the outdated materials will not be able to keep up with. There is no more working harder without gain. It is time to work out smarter. 

Activewear for a Comfortable Workout

Think about the time that goes wasted during a workout session when we get preoccupied with adjusting our ineffective fitness clothing. When we generate body heat, it’s a good sign that we’re using our energy to build muscle and get our heart rate going, but the perspiration that comes with it can really slow us down or make our work out uncomfortable. 

The evolution of performance gear has pushed comfort in an effective direction, keeping us warm without holding us back with excess sweat or weight to interfere with our speed. With that said, you can take full advantage of activewear that maintains a lightness that can be appreciated by hikers and runners that enjoy training and working out outside, and don't have the luxury of carrying any extra heavy unneeded weight around. Make sure that overheating is not a worry that ever has to cross your mind. 

Even contemporary training shoes are transferring your momentum in order to push you forward without getting in your way at all. They also function as multi-weather footwear in that they usually have the grip support to keep you grounded when the weather is getting blustery. 

Workout Apparel


The material that you choose to wear to the gym should enable you to feel confident, comfortable, and dry. When you are exercising, you need to be totally focused on the activities at hand and not distracted by self-conscious discomfort, worrying about the sweat that is covering you, or some ill-fitting clothes that you now wish you never left your house in. 

The type of exercise that you are engaging in will dictate the different types of clothing you need to have on. The way that the fabric feels on your body and the cut and measurements of your apparel can either make you feel at ease or utterly embarrassed and, even worse, can interfere with your range of movement. 

Remember, you are about to be bending, stretching, reaching, and pulling. The last thing you need to have is your own clothing being too tight to stretch or two baggy that it trips you up. Make sure you wear dedicated athletic apparel that is made from materials that can move with you, not against you. 

Activewear Fabrics


As we are learning here, not every piece of performance wear has the same results when put to use for a workout. There are many breathable synthetic fabrics that keep the sweat away from your skin. This helps to make that sweat moisture evaporate faster and, at the same time, lead to your body temperature feeling cooler. 

Clothing made out of fabrics containing polypropylene, nylon, or acrylics is a good choice for exercise when you are pushing your body parts to the limit. These materials are also beneficial for other activities when it is clear that you are going to be sweating a lot. Having your sweat evaporate from your skin is key to not feel uncomfortable, overheated and overly sweaty. 

Cotton pants and cotton shirts absorb perspiration, and they don't keep it away from the skin or assist in it evaporating quickly, so while having cotton as part of a blend of materials is OK, you generally don’t want 100% materials for working out. 

The materials that you should avoid in fitness clothing would be rubber-based or plastic-based materials because they keep sweat from evaporating and keep your body temperature high during the course of your fitness routine. 

Get It to Fit


You may think that purchasing workout clothes that fit your body is as simple as just picking out your size and paying for them. Before you go shopping for the new additions to your fitness fashion collection, consider these tips beforehand:

  • Wear apparel that is comfortable and loose enough to let your body breathe. If you are running or biking, stay far away from wide-legged pants. They could easily get twisted up in the bicycle pedals. 
  • Stretchy, fitted fabrics that are sweat-wicking protectors are ideal for activities like yoga, pilates, or even weight-lifting.
  • Remember that you don't want performance apparel that is going to become an obstacle to you while you are in the zone working your body out to the fullest. 


Four Season Athletes

Make use of these tips when dressing for outdoor exercise:

  • In Hot Temperatures: When you are working out during seriously hot temperatures, be sure to choose fabrics that make it possible for your skin to breathe and keep sweat away. Also, wear clothes that are comfortable enough to move freely. 
  • In Cold Temperatures: Dress warmly, but keep in mind that you'll be exercising. Your heart rate is going to rise, as will your body temperature. Dress in layers that you can remove, with sweat-wicking clothing on your inner layer, and an insulating layer on top of that. Keep those ears, hands, and head covered to stay warm and healthy. 
  • In Windy Weather:  Wear an outer layer of clothing that protects your skin from sudden shifts in weather. 

No matter what the temperature may currently be, the odds are very high that you are still going to sweat quite a bit while working out. Remain as comfortable as possible with clothing designed for heavy exercise but still keeps moisture away from the skin. Dress appropriately for the weather if you are working out outside. 

After Working Out

We all need some downtime to revive our tired bodies when we finish a particularly hard workout. Along with the exhaustion comes a dose of that soreness from working our muscles into a feverish sweat. 

It may not make immediate sense, but the particular clothes worn for a workout play a pivotal role in how the body is going to feel post-workout. While sweatpants are always a good go-to, how do you arrive at the right clothing after your fitness regimen has been completed? It is all about incorporating the correct factors that keep you comfortable:

Hoodies: Zip-up hoodies are an activewear item that runners tend to put on after they finish working out. The great thing is that these pieces of apparel are generally a runner’s go-to for throwing on after the workout. Keep a healthy little collection of hoodies to function as both a post-workout piece and a great way to warm up when exercising outdoors in the chillier months. 

Knitted Cap: With your body temperature fluctuating before, during, and after a workout, the last thing you want to do is get yourself sick. You may feel overheated after running around extensively. But your body sweat cools down so fast that you may catch a cold if you don't throw on a knitted cap to keep your head and ears warm. 

Long-sleeve top: Runners typically are going to either want to change out of their current top when they complete a workout and change into a new one, or they will simply want to throw on a long-sleeve top with a loose fit on top of whatever they already have on. Nothing too tight. 

All in all, you want to pay close attention to the fabrics and materials that your activewear is being crafted out of. You don't want to get stuck with clothing that doesn't protect your body from your own moisture so that you don't get sick. 

Final Thought

It is important that you are wearing clothing that fits you properly, staying away from apparel that is way too baggy or feels like it is extremely tight when you put it on. You want to have nothing standing in the way between you and your exercises, not even your own clothing.