10th Commandment: June 26

Jun 26, 2013

I recently started working out again after a multi-month absence from the gym.  It’s difficult to stick with it, but having comfortable and stylish workout clothes helps.  It makes getting dressed to go to the gym kind of fun, and then once I’m dressed, it seems silly not to actually go.

I can’t stand to have anything on my legs when I workout, so I prefer a breezy running short to yoga pants or spandex leggings.  If you like snugger fitting, full-length or capri-length workout pants, fellow fashion blogger Jaclyn Day works out frequently and seems to like the Ellie brand.

Elected Official


adidas by Stella McCartney Running Shorts ($75)

Hill Staffer


Athleta Stability Run Short ($44)

I like these because the waistband doesn’t pinch or slide around.

Paid Intern


Reebok Zigignite Short ($17)

My neighbor was telling me that Old Navy actually has some good products for misses, petites and plus sizes.

Where do you like to shop for workout attire?  Any brands you’ve loved or hated?

Also, and update on my Fitbit Flex. I love it.  My only complaint is that when I bought it, I thought it had a feature to alert you when you’d been sitting idle for a certain amount of time, but it doesn’t.  Other than that, the count is fairly accurate (no wrist worn pedometer is perfect) and it’s clued me in to some important issues regarding my sleep habits (particularly that I sleep poorly on Sunday nights).  So if you’re looking for an activity monitor, check it out.

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  1. Kate says:

    I love Zella workout clothes from Nordstrom! I wear their Live-In capris for working out. The pieces are cute, prices are reasonable, and quality is great.

    I also really like UnderArmour- specifically their UA Tech shirts for sweaty classes. Also helps that they come in a bunch of great colors!

    Lastly, I always wear my Sweaty Band (hate having hair fall in my face when I’m exercising). They come in great colors/patterns (even glitter if you’re so inclined) and truly do not slip.

  2. Amanda says:

    I actually really love Old Navy work out attire. It comes in fun colors, it’s inexpensive and it’s good quality. I swear by their compression capris and running tank-tops. They pretty consistently have sales, so it’s easy to stock up then!

    • DB says:

      I second the Old Navy compression capris – they cut down on the jiggle, come in lots of cute colors, and have held up better than other capris I’ve tried. They have great running shorts too.

      • Andrea says:

        Everyone is so right about Old Navy! I’m the opposite of Belle and much prefer to run in running tights, and Old Navy’s are great and inexpensive.

  3. APW says:

    I find that I always go back to Nike. The clothes hold up wash after wash, and I really like the fabrics. So many vendors sell Nike that you can usually find it on sale.

    Target has great sports bras. Lots of fun colors and very reasonable.

  4. Cynthia W says:

    I like Old Navy for yoga pants and have also gotten some great deal on Adidas and Nike stuff at Marshall’s and TJMaxx. Target carries the Champions line, which is great for their sweat-wicking shirts and for yoga gear and shorts.

    I have to say that, when it comes to compression gear, I haven’t found anything as good as UnderArmor. It’s really the only stuff that compresses enough and stops the jiggling and chafing that can come with running – I’ve found decent prices at Academy, especially on the cold weather gear at the end of the season and from the UnderArmor website. The UA website routinely runs free shipping specials and has a good clearance section. The only downside is that their free shipping isn’t the quickest, so it doesn’t work for something that you need right away.

    • LO says:

      Totally agree on UnderArmor. I am obsessed with their coldgear and heatgear. The burnout shirts from a few years ago are a staple of my workout wardrobe, though some things are no match for DC humidity.

      • Mia says:

        Also raising a hand to support UA – almost all of my running pants are UA (and absolutely – love their cold and heat gear).

  5. AC says:

    I’ve also recently gotten back into exercising–particularly loving ballet-barre, Pilates and yoga right now. I’ve been lucky enough to stumble upon a few lululemon sales, and I’m a huge fan of their “wunder under” pants and their tanks. The tanks in particular are very well fitted, sweat wicking and tailored well enough so that I’m not tugging it down while running or in barre class. The luon material on the wunder unders is amazing as well–it feels like being hugged!

    I still rely on Target for sports bras and basics, but I’ve also heard really good things about Gap Fit (Gap’s athletic line).

    • Ann E. says:

      I cannot say enough about how much I love the wunder under crops! I even love them for running in cooler temps because the are long enough that they don’t roll up my calves (a HUGE pet peeve of mine and why I’ve shied away from Nike and UA running crops).

      The I like both the Gap fit and Champions line of sports bras at Target they’re great for lower impact but I have to get the Nike or UA serious compression ones for running. I have yet to find a more affordable sports bra that will really hold my only moderate sized “girls” in place while I run.

  6. AVV says:

    For workout gear, ditto Cynthia W and LO on the UnderArmor comments, especially for bottoms. I’ve also had good luck for tops with Champion’s premium line at Target, especially if you want a basic tee style.

    I also love my Fitbit Flex. If you want an alarm to remind you to move, have you tried just setting a recurring alarm?


  7. C says:

    I really like UnderArmor, especially their short sleeve v-neck (https://www.underarmour.com/shop/us/en/womens-ua-tech-short-sleeve-v-neck/pid1228321-311). They are light weight, dry easily, and not clingy, so I don’t over heat and I also don’t feel over exposed.

    Also, I’ve been using a Jawbone UP for about 4 weeks and have loved it. It does have an idle alarm, which has been great, and it does a nice breakdown of my sleep, activity during the day, and food consumed. I’m really happy with it.

  8. Gina says:

    I am a loyal supporter of lululemon for workout wear. They are the most flattering and the quality is unbeatable, which is important for workout clothes. Think about it, you really wear and have to wash your workout clothes the most, so while Target and Old Navy are cheaper they are also going to fall apart sooner or fade. I used to work at lululemon so I know what is worth spending the money or not. Don’t buy anything cotton from them, it’s not worth it to spend that much money or a cotton t-shirt or hoodie. The best investment are their running line. I find they wick away sweat and feel light and comfortable better than anything else. Also, assuming you have a modest cup size, you get more of your money’s worth by buying the tank tops that have the built in shelf bra. That way you get a sports bra and tank in one. Obviously if you’re well endowed (lucky) you’ll have to get a more supportive sports bra, but the cool razor back tanks are great and pretty affordable to wear over any type of bra. If you’re only able to invest in one piece at a time, I think the pants are the best investment. You can wear any old t-shirt or tank top, but for me having good workout pants/shorts/capris is essential. Oh I workout 4-5 days a week practicing yoga, indoor cycling, and running.

  9. AnnaD says:

    Old Navy shorts fit me wonderfully and are ridiculously comfortable (and inexpensive), and they don’t give you “diaper butt” like $28 Nike Tempos.

    Target’s C9 by Champion line is my go to for yoga capris, workout tanks and tops. All my cold weather gear is C9 and my sports bras too. I have a case of almost perpetual headlights and absolutely can not and WILL NOT wear a basic sports bra, even though my girls are small. The C9 molded cup racer back bra takes care of that, um, glaring issue for me.

    My sweet, 30-week pregnant cousin has loaned me her Polar watch until she can use it again, and it gives me a much more accurate report of calories burned, heart rate stats, etc. Plus it’s pink. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes to track their calories burned stats.

  10. Julie says:

    Old Navy! I will rave for days about this top: https://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=53934&vid=1&pid=387760102
    I have four of them and plan to buy more. The material is extremely comfortable and well made. I ran the Army 10 miler in it! It’s by far the most flattering work out top I own, which is shocking because I’m very top heavy. And it’s cheap!
    (And by looking up this link, I see many colors I don’t own yet so excuse me while I go buy more….)

    • Virginia says:

      I love love love that top as well – every time I wear it to the gym or a race, people always stop me to ask where I bought it!

  11. NHRunner says:

    I spend way too much time in workout clothes, but I think I have it pretty well nailed down by now.

    Sports bras: Patagonia (for wearing all day) or Lululemon. No skimping here, it’s the most important part of my workout attire.
    Hot-weather tops: C9 at Target, Nike, UA. Pretty much anything will do.
    Cold-weather tops: UA (my go-to for warm base layers), Nike
    Shorts: My favorites are Xersion brand from JCPenney but are discontinued. Old Navy is great but size down. UA works well if you have narrow hips. Hate my Nike shorts.
    Undies: No cotton this time of year (actually ever if I’m sweating). Patagonia is hands down my favorite, but any synthetic will do.

    Marshalls and TJMaxx are the way to go for finding cheap cute workout stuff. Kyodan and Green Apple are two of my favorite brands, and are only carried there.

  12. Anon says:

    Lululemon running shorts– the slightly longer ones- are the only ones I’ll wear. They are low waisted, with a wide band that is not tight. All other running shorts come up super high and the waist is tight, thereby coming up short in the crotch. And yes their stuff is expensive, but price per wear is dirt cheap. I’ve had cropped pants of theirs for YEARS. That old navy stuff will be in the trash inside of 10 months.

  13. Pancakes says:

    It depends on the article of clothing for me.

    Sports bras: C9 at Target, but really anything. I even have a Forever 21 one. I’m an A cup, so I don’t need much support…just headlight coverage, haha.
    Hot weather tops: Adidas, Old Navy, really anything. I like to buy tank tops that are several sizes too large. B
    Cold weather tops: Nike, UnderArmour, Brooks (running vest), Lululemon (wool)
    Shorts: Lululemon Speed Shorts. Still haven’t found anything I like better, unfortunately.
    Tights/crops: Lululemon, Gap. Not as picky about this, since I don’t currently live in a cold climate.
    Socks: Swiftwicks, New Balance
    Shoes: Brooks, Nike Free 5.0

    Wearing my regular cotton undies doesn’t bother me, but I’m not a marathoner.

    • Pancakes says:

      P.S. Can anyone recommend a good fitted spandex running short that won’t ride up when you run?

      (And isn’t see-through, of course.)

      • Clementine says:

        Try either UnderArmour or Danskin. I’ve had cotton-blend Danskin capris that have lasted for YEARS. They might carry stuff at WalMart now, but I haven’t tried that line so I can’t speak to the quality.

        I’m a big fan of the UnderArmour compression weight HeatGear for summer running. It doesn’t fall down which makes me extremely happy.

      • bdr says:

        I just bought a pair of Moving Comfort compression shorts and LOVE them. They are flattering (perfect fit around the hips) and just the right length. And they don’t ride up, ever. I run about 50 miles a week, so that is a HUGE pet peeve of mine.

  14. Lady Lawyer says:

    1) I’m on that Old Navy train, too. Seriously, I get some cute stuff there that holds up to a tough workout.
    2) I just started using Ellie, like you mentioned. Not as pricey as Lululemon, but the quality seems good. I think the sizing maybe different than what I’m used to (pants seem to be small, but tops kind of big), so I’ll have to play around with that as I purchase more items.

    I am in the market for some new workout shoes. I don’t run outside very much– I mostly do treadmill, row machine, weights and pilates (which doesn’t really require shoes, but you get the point). Any thoughts?

    • Mia says:

      RE: Shoes – go to Pacers or Fleet Feet or PR (highly recommend Karen in Cleveland Park – she’s one of the best fitters around) – you really should have someone analyze your gait before purchasing a shoe. It’s free to have your stuff analyzed, too.

      Personally, I am addicted to my Pearl Izumi EM model and the Brooks Pure Project shoes.

      But really – have someone check out your gait and needs so you can get the right shoe. Buy them there (pay the price for the expertise), then in the future, you’ll know the brand/size and can easily grab them online pretty cheaply!

  15. R10 says:

    ON work out gear has stepped up since they bought Athleta. I have bought ON, but the color tends to fade quickly. Not an issue for the price in my mind ……For Yoga -I LOVE Athleta. A little more expensive, but will wash and wear year after year. Shorts and dresses are great too. For sports bras….I’m a champion fan, but looking for something new. Anyone tried Panache?

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