Jul 27, 2016

Where To Buy Affordable Exercise Clothes

When I was younger, I actually didn't give two figs about what I wore when I worked out. Probably because when I was younger we weren't even 1/12th as fashion savy as youth are today. We were happy in our over-sized Adidas t-shirts, plain shorts, and junky shoes. Work out clothes weren't really a thing. I swear it is a fall out from the over use of leotards, leg-warmers, and pantyhose worn during the Jane Fonda workouts of the 80's. Once we got to the 90's we wised up and just wanted to be comfortable whilst working out.

Fast forward a few, um 10's of years and we are living in a culture where fitness and fashion had a baby and we are brainwashed that it is imperative that we look stylish while working out. Not only to be cute, but also to appear as legit specimens of athletic and fitness ability.

You know the struggle is real. All the while I am complaining and making fun of this fitness wear phenomenon, I not-so-secretly want to look just as legit and cute as everyone else. My sister laughs when I want to coordinate all my workout outfits.

I would laugh at me too. However, it doesn't change the fact that I want cute work out clothes.

Here is the dilemma- a lot of workout clothes cost and arm and a leg. And quite frankly I need all my appendages to do the actual exercising, so I can't use them as payment for a cute pair of shorts.

So what's a girl to do?

This girl went on the hunt for cute and affordable work out gear. I am sharing my favorite places to buy work out clothes.

1. Walmart

Yes, Walmart. Don't knock it until you have tried it ladies. I would say 50% of my work out clothes come from the racks of Walmart. Reason 1- even full price their stuff is affordable. Reason 2- you can find some ridiculous deals on their clearance.

My favorite finds from Walmart are their running shorts and their tanks. I have bought sports bras from there, but I don't need a lot of um..er...support (small chested) so I can do with a cheaper sports bra.

Walmart rotates styles quite often and if you are vigilant about watching their clearance you can get some freaking awesome deals. Just last week I got running shorts for $2 a pair. Insanity people!

2. Target

You all know how I feel about Target. The work out clothes selection at Target is dreamy and I wish I could buy it all. However, I have to watch for sales. The workout clothes from target, while more affordable, definitely can still be pricey. At least for my wallet. The good news is, they have pretty decent clearance too. Especially when it is close to the end of a season. I stock up on cold running gear in late winter/early spring, for the next winter.

My favorite buys at Target are sports bras and cold weather running gear.

3. Old Navy

Old Navy, similar to Target can have great deals but you have to watch for them. I haven't loved their leggings, but I do really like their shorts and their tanks. Another work out item I buy from Old Navy is their socks. While that isn't really part of the "cute" work out gear, everyone needs a good pair of socks.

At least one time a year Old Navy has a killer sale on work out clothes. Keep your ears open for that sale and load up. It is pretty magical.

4. Discount Retailers (Ross/TJ Maxx)

The variety at these stores is limited, but if you take a peek at the work out section whenever you stop by you could get really lucky and find some gems. One of my very favorite pair of leggings (that I have since had to retire) came from Ross. Like I said earlier, it can be more work to search for deals here, but it is possible.

5. Online (Amazon, Zulily, etc.)

Online can be tricky because some online deal sites are not really that affordable. They may be cheaper than high end name brands, but they are really not that affordable. You guys might know what I am talking about. My trick with online is to make sure you get notifications of sales for work out clothes.

A very small percentage of work out clothes comes from online (at least these other stores). However, I still can find some really good deals. Okay, really my husband finds me some really good deals. Deals on things like Under Armour, New Balance, Brooks, and other brands.

The Secret to Finding Affordable Work Out Clothes:

You need to be willing to look anywhere. Anytime you are at a store search their clearance work out section. Even high priced stores have affordable deals sometimes. You need to be willing to search outside the box. Also, be willing to not have name brand. While there is a reason, Nike and Under Armour are better, a stores brand will do the trick. I promise!

That being said, there are some items you really should pay more money for. I pay more money for good winter running clothes (mostly because I run in the frigid winters of Idaho) and for work out shoes. Your feet are working hard and whether you are running, cross-training, weight-lifting, or taking cardio classes YOU NEED GOOD SHOES. I still buy my shoes on sale, but I do not buy knock off brands and I do not buy the generic low price name brand shoe that is basically only good for walking around in your day to day life.

Hope that enlightens a few of you. Basically it comes down to this---YOU CAN WORK OUT, LOOK CUTE, and NOT SPEND A FORTUNE.

Trust me, I have been doing it for awhile now.


Leigh Anne said...

Thanks so much for this post!! I've been wanting to upgrade my workout wardrobe! I totally get u about the evolution of workout wear. When I was younger an oversized free college T shirt and cotton shorts did the trick. Now, I want cute stuff even though I workout from home, but I don't want to pay Lululemon prices ;) (or even Under Armour for that matter). I've hit all the spots u listed but need to check WM more often! They do have cute stuff and way affordable. I also got some awesome Nike Dri Fit Shorts from a second hand clothing store when I was shopping for kids clothes. So always check their racks if u have a good one nearby :)

Larissa@Just Another Day in Paradise said...

Thanks Leigh Anne! That is a great idea.


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