Style + Ask The Edit

Fitness Fashion Week: Golf Style

Given the grumbling yesterday, let me explain a little bit about this week’s theme.

If I receive a lot of Ask Belle’s on the same topic, it will end up with a theme week, and a surprising number of people have written in to ask what they should wear for workouts and sports.  While I believe that utility is the most important quality for workout attire, I don’t believe that utility and appearance are mutually exclusive categories.

I’ve never understood the argument that women who dress up for the gym aren’t serious about their workouts.  It’s like saying that women who want to look nice while at work aren’t serious about their jobs.  The seriousness of a woman’s fitness regimen should be should be judged by her fitness level, not her clothing. Who says you can’t look adorable while you get fit? 

Politicians and golf go together like teen girls and Justin Bieber.  As a result, staffers looking to rise above their station to the rank of K Street sellout (I kid, I kid.) need to learn how to golf.  But while swinging the club well is important, looking good on the golf course can’t hurt either.

Now, back to the golf course…

While it would be easy to embrace the argyle, pleated skirts and visors, that’s a little gauche for me.  I prefer to keep a clean look on the links, and opt instead, for an all white ensemble.  It looks soft and classic, and it will keep you cool in the blazing sunshine.

Ray Ban Aviators (ShopBop, $129)

Golf Tech Polo Shirt (Puma, $45)

Golf Plain Skirt with Inner Short (Golf World, $50)

La Mer Wrap Watch (ShopBop, $115)

Nike Brassie Golf Shoe (Sports Authority, $80)



  1. Katherine says:

    I don’t golf, but I’m pretty sure I would look adorable in that 🙂

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  2. Ash says:

    Ummm no. I am pretty sure that anyone who weighs over 85 pounds would look big as a house in all that white.

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  3. Belle says:

    If you don’t want to do all white, you could do all grey or all navy. Or even all black, though that might get hot. The point is monochromatic works best and looks sleekest.

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  4. Stephanie says:

    I totally understand going for cute when you’re doing something social, like golf (I actually love those golf shoes, and might snag a pair for when I have to play with the in-laws–my current pair could definitely stand to be replaced). But again, when doing a really serious and difficult workout, it’s not about being social and it’s not about being cute. It’s about challenging yourself, and wearing whatever is most functional for those activities. I have never, ever seen a woman who dressed up to go to the gym, or to do anything outdoors, do anything resembling a serious workout. Ever.

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  5. Jill says:

    Very nice. I’m learning to golf and like the idea of golf outfits that are sleek and athletic-looking (to make me feel like I know what I’m doing even though the opposite is true).

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  6. VA says:

    I don’t understand why people keep acting like you can’t be functional AND cute. I can run just as hard in a bright tank and sleek athletic shorts as I can in baggy sweats and my boyfriend’s holey old tee shirt. Especially in DC, where your next job connection could be on the next treadmill over, why not be put together?

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  7. Belle says:

    Thank you, VA. I hadn’t even thought of that, but especially if you’re running in the House or Senate gyms, not looking like a homeless person, might be a good idea.

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  8. R says:

    LOVE LOVE LOVE that watch

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  9. Stephanie says:

    Running is a workout for which minimal equipment is needed–that’s not the sort of thing I mean when I refer to a serious workout for which specific equipment/attire/etc. is needed. And again, none of the serious runners I know care about the form over the function of their tanks, shorts, tights, shoes, etc. The people I see running in cute outfits are at least exercising, which I think is more than most of the country can say, but not taking it seriously.

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  10. dm58 says:

    Stephanie, I simply cannot believe that you have NEVER seen a serious woman exercising in a cute outfit. Just a for instance (and there are many), my husband competes in Ironman triathlons. I think we can all agree that these athletes are “serious,” right? Well, I am not good enough to make it to the Ironman (horrible swimmer), but I go to cheer him on. I have seen just as many women competitors in very, very cute running outfits and blingy shoes as I have seen women in ratty clothing. Actually, most the women competitors dress pretty cute.

    And I run marathons. This may not live up to your opinion of a “serious” workout, but I get pretty darn sweaty and I always wear matchy-matchy cute running outfits. One of my shirts even has sparkles on it!

    Your over generalization is pretty outrageous.

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  11. Ms B says:

    love skirts with inner shorts on the golf course. But prefer the sleeveless top and a very intense sunscreen. The golf shoe collection is great because you see a lot of Khaki slacks. Ralph Lauren and Nike do this up great, plus a few company’s produce longer skirts (to the knee) in breatheable, stretchable fabrics for more mature women whose legs look best with a little bit of cover. Now, where did i put my driving glove?

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  12. Ms B says:

    ps. the Nike shoe runs small so you might need to go up a half size.

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  13. VA says:

    Stephanie, that’s just insulting. “Your clothes match, so you must not be working very hard.” Why the chip on your shoulder about cute workout clothes? It’s cool if you don’t want to wear them, but why are you being so judgmental of others?

    July 21, 2010/Reply
  14. Me says:

    I exercise everyday, have run two marathons and numerous half marathons, as well as competed in triathlaons. I would say, 95% of the time, I wear cute, matchy outfits. It really isn’t that hard to find a cute colored tank, match it with some shorts or capris and look put together while doing some serious work. I find it insulting that just because I look good while I work out, I must not be serious about my training.

    July 22, 2010/Reply
  15. Stephanie says:

    In my experience, no, I’ve never seen someone in a cute outfit tackle a serious workout. Why would I say that if it weren’t true? I’ve done half marathons, marathons and triathlons myself. Perhaps it’s a regional thing (I’m in the NW), but that IS my experience. I never said that only people who look like slobs are serious about fitness–just that I have never seen anyone in an overly-thought-out matchy-match outfit do any serious working out or training. Is it possible to look decent while working out? Yep. Do I? Yep. Do I painstakingly coordinate my workout gear, and wear jewelry and makeup while working out? Of course not. Further–do I make judgments and assumptions based on things I’ve seen? Yes. And so do all of you. So quit taking me to task for what you consider over-generalizing and judging, when in reality, I’ve just formed an opinion based on what I’ve seen. None of you could honestly tell me you don’t do the same.

    July 22, 2010/Reply
  16. Norwegianette says:

    The problem isn’t “who says you can’t look cute when you get fit”, the problem is you’re saying, you HAVE TO and I will judge you if you don’t (well, that’s what you said in the ponytail post anyway, implied: and you will be ).

    Honestly, while I love to put together fashion and spend disproportionate amounts on handbags clothes and shoes for the sake of looking cute, I do not think about looking cute All. The. Time. When I’m working out, I get lost in the workout, the feeling of pushing my body. Looking cute is the last thing I’m thinking about. Judge me all you want, I’m enjoying myself and I find your judging silly.

    July 23, 2010/Reply
  17. Belle says:

    I will judge you if you have a clip in your hair. I won’t judge you if you show up to the gym in a college t-shirt and a pair of ratty shorts. Just the clip. And of course if your gym bag is vera bradley.

    July 23, 2010/Reply
  18. nicole says:

    geography has alot to do with commonly seen attire. big difference between dc & the northwest. not a bad thing, just different…. wanted to put that out there.

    July 23, 2010/Reply
  19. nicole says:

    ps. i LOVE that watch and would totally where that outfit to a golf outing, swaping the top for one with a company logo of course… and most of my outings involve farmers in the midwest. i might be a touch over dressed, but i wouldn’t really care 🙂

    July 23, 2010/Reply
  20. Norwegianette says:

    Well if your gym bag is Vera Bradley, you’re asking for it. It seems I must have read your posts a little harsher than they were meant.

    July 23, 2010/Reply