How to dress for the gym // without looking like a LOSER

I’m by no means a fitness expert – far from it. In fact I’m the sort of girl who gets exhausted running a bath. But I do know my style stuff and can offer some sartorial personal training of sorts.

Many view working out as an excuse to don ancient jogging-bottoms or unforgiving Lycra. I, however, see it as an excuse to buy a whole new wardrobe and bust out ‘80s style star jumps. Besides, you never know WHO you might bump into in the gym. Hopefully a ripped hottie.

Handily enough some of this season’s key trends – colour blocking, neon brights, metallics – are easily transferable from runway to running machine.

So here’s what to sport when sweating it out in style – it’ll make catching sight of your reflection while you’re burning up the treadmill just that bit more bearable…


They’re not just for teenage looters, oh no sir. The ubiquitous hoodie is the perfect cover-up pre and post workout. The hood can also be utilised as a disguise if you spot your Ex/Bank Manager/afore-mentioned hottie when exiting the gym and do not wish to display your post workout ‘glow’.

American Apparel do the best hoodies in a whole host of colour popping brights – try their unisex style but buy a size smaller to avoid looking like the Michelin Man.

American Apparel hoodies

Sporty jacket

You’ll need one of these for travelling to and from the gym (unless you’re one of those types I often spot who parks a few metres away from the gym entrance and dramatically leaps out of the car, making out they’ve jogged there). I like this galaxy print jacket by Urban Mobility (was £80, now £21), complete with handy pockets to stash your gym pass and keys.


Look. I’ll be honest. I’m the girl who turned up to her own gym induction wearing Converse. The only sort of cross trainer I encounter is a ticking off from my PT asking me where I’ve been for the last 3,234, 283 weeks.

If you’re going to be participating in high impact sports (e.g. pounding the pavements running and such like), invest in a proper pair of supportive sneakers. They may look *gasp* chunky but they will certainly give sprains the body swerve. And any sense of style. Kidding!

If, like me, your exercise regime is more about street dance classes and stuff, it’s a great excuse to purchase a pair of colourful hi-tops – customise the shit out of your own via NIKE iD or simply snap up a pair of bloomin’ beautiful NIKE Blazers in a floral Liberty print. In fact, these are probably far too nice for the gym.

Nike Liberty print BlazersGym bag

Your gym bag should be large enough to carry your sports kit, trainers, towel and wash bag. And your iPod, make-up bag, magazines, hair brush and all the other random stuff we gals lug around with us. I once found a plastic axe in my handbag, but that’s another story.

This ASOS colour popper canvas shopper is an absolute style steal and just looking at it may even provide you with the motivation you need to get to the gym.

If metallics are more your thing, this squishy lame duffel bag (£28) from American Apparel has a bit of an ‘80s Fame! vibe to it (a good thing in my book).

Or, if you’re after a sturdy rucksack shape, you needn’t use the free one from your gym. This perforated leather style (£39) from ASOS is much more sleek (just like you).


Avoid getting your trackies caught up on the running machine and sport a short. The brave can go for these metallic silver cycling shorts from American Apparel .

The rest of us should probably just stick to the ‘70s inspired running shorts (complete with retro go-faster stripes).


You’ll need a bit of techie fabric here to wick away sweat and give a bit of support. This Rapid Dry Energy Boxback Tank by Casall (now £24) is in one of this summer’s hottest hues.

Alternatively, if colour blocking’s more your thing, this Block Stripe Tank by Adidas Originals (£31) is really rather nice.

I was also quite taken by Nike’s ‘Move your *’ T-shirt – not only for the sweat-wicking  fabric and clever ‘non-chaffing’ seams (what?) – the shouty slogan is cheaper than a Personal Trainer and probably just as effective?

Water bottle

And finally, you gotta keep hydrated, but do it in style with a wottle (as they’re apparently called) by a high-end fashion designer.

Marc by Marc Jacobs designed some covetable bright bottles last year. Or snap up a piece of Orla Kiely for less than a tenner – and do your bit for the planet, too.

Phew! I’m exhausted after all that style advice. So off for a cheeky lie down in a darkened roo. But you have fun getting fit, yeah?

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    Just stumbled across this post via Google images. Do you do any work out classes that you could recommend?

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