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How to Dress for Every Workout at the Gym

You wouldn’t play basketball in football pads and a helmet, so why dress the same for weightlifting as you would yoga?


Knowing how to dress for the occasion is important, not just for formal functions, but everyday activities as well — especially going to the gym. And if you’re working out properly, you should you be alternating muscle groups each day and completely revamping your routine altogether every few weeks. That means what you wear should be changing, too.

If you add cardio or yoga to your workout you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible right out of the gate. And to do that, you can’t expect the same clothes you wear to do squats and deadlifts to be at home on either a treadmill or yoga mat. After all, you wouldn’t play basketball in football pads and a helmet, would you?

Below are the best kits you can wear for four general types of exercise, so you can get the most out of each rep, mile and downward-facing dog.

Weight Training

Tough But Light


If you’re weightlifting or resistance training, you’ll want your shirt and shorts to be made from a tough material that has flexibility and good sweat-wicking qualities. Shoes, however, play a much larger part than most people realize. The ideal shoe has a stable, flat sole, preferably one that doesn’t compress as much as a regular trainer. When you’re stepping back from the rack with a bar loaded with plates, the last thing your feet need is an uneven and unstable surface.

Foundation Short by Ten Thousand $62
Foundation Shirt by Ten Thousand $45
Athletic Socks by Darn Tough $11+
Performance Adipower by Adidas $128+


Minimalism Is Key


If you’re doing cardio right, you’ll most likely be repeating the same motion over and over again for an extended period of time. And after a long enough time even your own arms and legs will start to feel heavier and heavier, so it’s important keep materials as light as possible with maximum breathability.

Dri-Fit Knit by Nike $80
Freedom by Nike $45
PhD Run Ultra Light Sock by SmartWool $12+
Instinct 3.5 by Altra $115


Keep It Unrestrictive


Luckily, when it comes to yoga, the type of outfit you’re looking for isn’t far off from your average “lazy Sunday” attire. Light, soft sweatpants and a breezy t-shirt are all you need. After all, yoga is all about ultimate meditative relaxation, right?

Ridge Tech Tank Top by Prana $40
Yoga Shorts by Yoga Addict $37
Metal Vent Tech Short Sleeve by Lululemon $68
Pace Breaker Short by Lululemon $68


Breathability Is Best


Sprinting, jumping, sitting up, pulling up — calisthenics is all about using your own body weight to get your heart pumping. But when your heart rate is constantly rising and falling, the sweat starts to pour. Because of this, it’s best to dress head to toe with breathability in mind. Range of motion is also high on the list, but keeping cool and wicking away sweat is the number one priority — that way it looks like you ran all those yards instead of swimming them.

W2 Sport T-Shirt by Ibex $60
Stride Short by Marmot $34
Iten by Enda $100+
Ultra-Light Cushion Socks by Darn Tough $17+

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