Double Wear – How sustainable is my closet
A look at Athletic Wear
I don’t know when it started, but I have mostly skipped the trend of wearing athletic wear all day long. I saw it, mind you – on others- just not on me. I didn’t work out and I didn’t like
the look.” Although I owned one pair of “yoga” pants that I wore when out walking the dog, I never really thought much about it.
According to Vogue (Jan 7, 2016 The 5 Golden Rules of Athleisure: Is It Really Acceptable to Wear Yoga Pants All Day Long?) there are rules and trends for wearing athletic wear. Since there are Official Rules, it’s now a societal norm to be seen all day long in your workout clothes. Even if you’re a mother of 3 running around with toddlers and living in Los Angeles I still think it’s an ugly trend.
The Bar Method changed everything: I joined The Bar Method in October 2016. For those of you who don’t know (me included, circa September 2016) a bar workout consists of a teacher and students, a few props (mainly a ballet barre) and a lot of isometric strength training (keeping your body still while you painfully work one muscle group). I joined one day on a whim and found I really liked it, so I’ve stuck with it. The women who work there and lead classes are friendly and don’t mind when I fall over (bad balance). I have even struck up a few casual conversations with like minded folks in class. I hope to continue with this workout place.
Cotton is no longer a preferred workout fabric: Mind you when I started I still didn’t have any workout clothes but it was apparent after the first class I was going to have to invest in some new gear. My problem of course is that fabrics that whisk sweat away from your skin and hold in your thighs like you are 18 again doesn’t equal “environmentally friendly” fashion. Cotton is no longer used because when it becomes wet it absorbs the liquid and becomes heavy. A no-no in today’s world. Fabrics rich in polyester and chemicals are now the norm. Ugh! You won’t find much of that in my closet …or will you?
Finding Compromise: I had to find a compromise and since I needed to wear something other than a shirt that rode up my belly (egad) each time I moved or a pair of pants that have seen about 200 wears and were 5 years old I headed to the Gap to find something I could add to my repertoire. Since the Gap was exactly 20 feet away from the Bar Method class I attend and I had a few “gap bucks” it seemed the easiest alternative.
My Outfit: I don’t normally shop the Gap except to maybe to grab a t-shirt or shorts for my kids occasionally (I don’t like their quality, style or selection) so I held only low hopes.
- I bought a pair of pants & top. Nothing fancy. Nothing too over the top.
- My pants are cotton & spandex.
- I owned 3 sports bras so I figured those would get me through each week.
- I forgo the socks with the silicon on the bottom to keep you from slipping …but I soon succumbed. (See above: bad balance).
Since purchasing, I wear the pants 2-3 times a week and rotate the shirts with a few cotton t’s I already owned. In this post I’m wearing my Pitbull t-shirt but I also rotate a workout shirt that my husband’s company handed out as swag a few years ago. I rinse the pants after each wear and give them a good washing with SIMPLY CO laundry soap once a week.
I’m bored with my one outfit by now and often eye the pretty designs I see on others in the class with envy but alas….I’ll wait til spring to get another pair of pants and top (thinner for warmer weather). I’d like to find a company who makes athletic wear with environmentally friendly fabric like organic cotton and without harmful chemicals. The Gap and Athletica both strive to be responsible but do not go far enough in my opinion. But that is an elusive goal, and I may have to compromise.
You won’t find me in these clothes all day long but hopefully they will be in my closet for a while .
The writer attends The Bar Method in Wellesley, Massachusetts. They can be found at www.Wellesley.barmethod.com.
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Note: The Gap and Athletica both strive to be responsible but do not go far enough in my opinion.
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