Finding Fashion and Function in Workout Gear

Typically, in the new year, working out more is one of the top resolutions people make. If you stood by your resolution you should be at your 90 day goal by now. Congrats on making it to 3 months of consistent work! Personally, I made this resolution 3 years ago and I have maintained my 3 day a week schedule and I have been able to get stronger and feel better over the last couple of years. Working out is something that I have added to my daily routine - not just for weight loss, but to help with mental health, clarity and overall wellness.

Working out is more than taking care of my body, it is also taking care of myself and my spirit. It's a reminder to take time for myself, something that can be hard to do as a working mom. Whether you take an hour out of the day for an intense yoga session or 15-30 minutes for a HIIT workout, your taking a moment to help yourself. You don't need a fancy gym membership to add a workout to your daily or weekly routine. Something as simple as jogging, walking or running can change your body and mind. I have found that running offers me a mental clarity and an uptick in my mood during the day that is similar to my meditation practice.

Keiko Collection - Sacrebleu Handbag by Nocori 
Exercise truly changes your mind. Typically, brains begin to lose neurons starting at about age 30, and aerobic exercise is one of the few methods proven to not only stop this loss but build new neural connections, making your brain operate like one much younger. I also find that it helps with Season Affective Disorder. The winter blues is a thing and as the cold weather drags on in the midwest, many people find that their moods are impacted by this. According to the Mayo Clinic, "Exercise helps prevent and improve a number of health problems, including high blood pressure, diabetes and arthritis. Research on depression, anxiety and exercise shows that the psychological and physical benefits of exercise can also help improve mood and reduce anxiety by releasing feel good endorphins."

The links between depression, anxiety and exercise aren't entirely clear — but working out and other forms of physical activity can definitely ease symptoms of depression or anxiety and make you feel better. Exercise may also help keep depression and anxiety from coming back once you're feeling better as well. Due to this, I have made it a point to be consistent with my workouts so that I can enjoy these benefits.



With all the benefits of exercise, one of the more difficult things I find is sifting through the many different athletic wear brands to find something that works well for me. As an on the go working mom, I need to be able to transition easily from running errands to running the path or completing a yoga session quickly. I hate having to carry a million bags. I have a work bag, purse and then if I am going to work out, throwing in a gym bag just drags me down. A fantastic option that I have found to resolve this issue is the NOCORI line of handbags. Designed by Phoebe Chen, the Sacrebleu handbag, part of the Keiko collection, is meant to be a sleek carryall that acts as both a purse and gym bag. This crossbody clutch is a versatile option for a fast-paced lifestyle. Handmade in New York City, the convertible crossbody features a removable crossbody strap and a hidden technical, dry-wicking mesh compartment to complement your fast-paced lifestyle. Exterior is 100% genuine cowhide leather. Interior is lined with water-resistant woven nylon making it a great carry option for your work out gear.


Ryderwear Block Banded Crop and Apex Tights



I also think it is important to be flexible with yourself and your workout schedule. Consistency is important, but life happens. I find that if I can't make a work out fit in during the day, sometimes working out in the evening works as well. It doesn't get nearly as dark as quick in Chicago now that we are in April, so I don't mind running in the evening. At twilight, though, it is still dim. So, for the sake of safety - having some sort of lighting equipment on me during my runs around the neighborhood is important. RunLites are a must have for any runner who opts for evening runs. RunLites are a personal wearable safety light that allow you to see and be seen. They are perfect for any type of nighttime or low-light activity, from running, walking, cycling, hiking, or other everyday activities. Statistics show that pedestrian fatalities are almost three times higher at night so adding lighting equipment helps ensure safety. Most lighting equipment available often has you sacrificing your own visibility, comfort and convenience, but RunLites provides a comfortable and easy to use lighting system. With a 135-degree radial arc of light 40 feet ahead - the runLites increase the wearer's visibility and has reflective trim and accents to help the pedestrian be seen. The pink set featured is the RunLites sling style. which is great for warmer weather or can be used over a pair of gloves. 

If you're looking for workout wear that is fashionable and functional, then look no further than Ryderwear. Ryderwear was launched in Australia in 2009 with the idea to bring together fashion and fitness. They've got functional and fashionable down pat. They've designed their collection with the athlete in mind. Every item in the ryderwear range is specifically designed to mould to the muscular physique of athletes and bodybuilders of any size while still looking fantastic. To ensure comfort during physical activity, their products are created using new technology fabrics which draw moisture away from the skin and feel incredibly comfortable at the same time. With Ryderwear, you can be sure that quality, practicality and perfection are never compromised. So, you can look and feel good even while you sweat. Their Apex Tights are a moto inspired style legging with ribbed detailing, mesh and a high waist. These leggings fit like a dream and hug you in all the right places. Their Block Banded Crop is a great layering piece. The style features an elastic tight performance fabric, Ryderwear branded support band, a high profile neckline, key-hole back and four-way stretch.

STS Blue Jeans and Ryderwear Block Banded Crop


If I am planning on working out later in the day, I like to style looks that make the transition easy. For a day where I'm running around shooting on set - pairing a Ryderwear sports bra with a simple message tank, black on black running shoes and fun cut off grommet jeans from a brand like STS Blue is a constant go to. STS Blue is a brand obsessed with denim. They create gorgeous, trendy jeans that fit like a glove. With a variety of washes and cuts, you'll find a pair that are the perfect fit.  Their product lineup ranges, but focuses only on denim. From denim jackets, to shorts and a variety of cuts in multiple shades, you can find something that will work as a layering piece with your workout wear or that will be those go to jeans this Spring as the weather gets warmer.
Working out doesn't have to be all work. It can be something fun and enjoyable. The more consistently you stay with it, the better you feel. I find that adding pieces here and there to my workout wear is a fun bonus. If you are on your workout journey, I wish you the best. Keep up the hard work, have fun with it and most importantly believe in yourself. 

-
Jen 
Finding Fashion and Function in Workout Gear Finding Fashion and Function in Workout Gear Reviewed by HALFSTACK MAGAZINE on Wednesday, April 04, 2018 Rating: 5
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