Oh, Sweaty Betty.

Sweaty Betty, London’s answer to Lulu, sent me another catalog today. I got it and thought “Hmm. Maybe this is the time I’ll actually order something.” They have great style. And every catalog comes with a 30% off code and free shipping, which takes a little bit of the sting out. So I sat down with an open mind and an open wallet.

Man did they fuck up.

They have just hiked up all of their prices from “yeesh” to “Fuck You.”

First page: Yellow “Free Style Tee.” Oversized tee with an open crossover back in lightweight fabric. (polyester.) $100.

Wait. What?

I thought $68 for a Lululemon tank was expensive, but at least I could rationalize it because the fabric is so thick and flattering and the cut hides my armpit fat.

But this is a leap, man. $100 for a fucking oversized YELLOW of all colors T-shirt?

Did Alexander McQueen come back from the dead and hand-distress it himself?

Is it woven completely out of the clippings swept up off the floor after Princess Kate gets her hair trimmed?

Is the yellow color made of dye that is squeezed out of canary feathers by artisan feather color squeezers, trained in the old way?

Does the open crossover back enable its wearer to literally fly?

Will wearing it cause Ryan Gosling/ Ryan Reynolds/ Whoever you like to appear before you to give you a pedicure?

Did the Mulleavy sisters (Rodarte) spit on it and then put it in a ziplock back that was on a shuttle that orbited the earth for twelve and a half years so it could get that perfect provenance and je ne sais quoi?

I mean, this is not a T-shirt put out by a label that has spent decades if not generations influencing fashion and art, and thereby kind of sort of able to sell a T-shirt for $100 because they’ve fucking earned it. This is a yellow polyester T-shirt for sweating in.

Did they put it there as a test to see if anyone was paying attention? Or did they just hike up the price like that because ladies who can buy your stuff don’t look at prices so why not take more of that money? Oh. Yeah. That’s what they did. And that’s really fucking rude. And that shit caught me on the wrong day.

Granted, on the next few pages there are some reasonably priced swimsuits (real suits cost money, a fact that you learn as you get into your one-piece years). But then, right there on page 15 and beyond:

Spin Training Tunic: “perfect lightweight running layer.” $115

Taper Run Tee $115

Zero Gravity Run Tights $160

(And no, I’m not posting pictures of ANY of it because I’m not going to help them sell it.)

Interval Run Tank $115

Cadence Run Jacket $200 and 40 fucking dollars are you mother fucking kidding me?

Tabata Training Tee $95 (I shit you not this is a boxy, short-sleeved, light grey T-shirt.)

Ocean Bay Zip Through (This is a hoodie.) $225

OH LOOK, HERE’S A $105 YOGA CAMI. Because if your outfit doesn’t cost twice as much as your monthly studio fees, then you’re never going to…what? I don’t even know what.

But then their sports bras are $65. Which is actually what a really good sports bra costs, so, reasonable.

Ohp, nope. Here’s another $90 yoga tee on the next page.

Sigh. Fine.

Enjoy your Sweaty Betty, rich people. I can take a hint. I’d be “more comfortable” in something else.

But also,

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Reebok embraces its funky funky truth.

Reebok.

When I say that, what comes to mind?

For me, a child of the 80s and a teen of the 90s, I think of these:

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Like, totally bubble gum pink!

and these:

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Pump-pump it up!

Reebok was Nike before Nike was Nike. (Step Reebok, anybody? PURPLE PINK TEAL BLACK!) There was a little bit of celebrity endorsement, but bold, bright funky products were the star, because, after all, Reebok let U.B.U.

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Cow spots and southwestern? These were EVERYTHING!!!

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Did Reebok invent cross training? I don’t remember. Probably not, but here’s an article. CLICK.

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PSYCH! These are from 2014! (blacktop tribal)

And since then…um…crickets? Not really. They never stopped existing. But you tell me what Reebok has been known for since then. (Oh yeah, Easy Tone. I got a check from the class action suit. Whoopsie!)

Cut to: twenty years later…CROSSFIT. Such a funky, fringe, down and dirty sport-hobby thing. Reebok embraced it, branded it, and made it A THING. (Their CrossFit logo has even taken over and become their brand logo.) When I think about CrossFit (grunting out basic exercises in an extreme way and probably twisting an ankle?) I think “no thanks, weirdo. I care not about your WOD.” But when I watch it on TV, I am RIVETED!!! It’s like track and field. It’s basic in the best, “pared down to simple feats of physical strength, technique and endurance” way possible. Totally kooky, but totally owning it. And the ‘bok is all about it.

Reebok has a history of embracing specific sports and fitness trends (aerobics, Step Reebok) so this is a move that’s true to the brand’s DNA. It’s authentic. It feels right. They’re also the official footwear brand of the UFC, they have a line called “combat” (Fuck yeah!), and they have a partnership with Les Mills developing apparel and workouts. (Les Mills = Body Pump.)

Reebok is getting back to what they’ve been best at. Not trying to out-Nike nike or out-pro UnderArmour, but instead being a little funky dunky fringe, and celebrating specific, not-mainstream sports. They’re reissuing a lot of classics, and their current collection of fitness apparel reminds me of the late 80s/early 90s era when they were last kicking ass. (Check out their “Rally” summer lookbook here.)  It’s all coming back together. Good on you, Reebok. U.B.U.

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Today’s WorkOutfit

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Admittedly, “work” today means worky work, like sitting on my ass at the computer work. Dressed like a dude in joggers, kicks, and a jacket. And 30 second hair. They have it so easy they don’t even know.

Joggers: Gapfit, Jacket: Mountain Hardware, Shoes: Toms, Tracker: Up2 by Jawbone

What this blog is and isn’t.

THIS BLOG IS

  • A place to learn about new fitness brands and trends, and how to feel better about yourself when you workout.
  • Full of swears. (A fuck ton of them.)
  • Real pictures of a real person in real places in real outfits.
  • Imperfect and human.

THIS BLOG IS NOT

  • A million photos of some skinny chick not looking at the camera.
  • An aspirational curated lifestyle bullshit whatever.
  • Taking itself too seriously.
  • Ever going to make you feel bad about yourself.

 

 

Running low on haterade…?!

I’ve got a serious problem. The world has caught up and most brands are making cute workout clothes and most people are wearing them. There’s even a Stitch Fix/ Trunk Club type service for fitness clothes now (sweat style). Hell, even Beyonce is coming out with a fitness line. (Ivy Park. Beyonce x Top Shop.) Which, for the record, is not fucking authentic because anyone who can pay someone to cook for them and train them is kind of cheating. Carrie Underwood. Kate Hudson. Gweneth. Britney. Jessica. Not like, lipo- cheating (although, maybe they have, I don’t know), but still. Just because you’re a star and keep in shape, and/or already have a clothing line you’re looking to extend, doesn’t mean you’re a fitness person.

Anyway. The only problem left for me to bitch about (other than that) in fitness fashion is clingy tech shirts. That’s it. They still suck, they still make everyone look lumpy and terrible, and they hold on to B.O. like a stink bank. And maybe the’ll never go away until I’m somehow made head of design at Nike or Under Armor (insert dream sequence here). But just one terrible crime against fitness fashion isn’t much to feed this beast.

What’s a girl to do??? Be positive?!? Just focus on putting cute WorkOutfits together? Like another vapid fashion blogger who for some reason can never look at the camera? Blech. I dunno, man.

I guess I’ll just keep on reporting on what’s coming out and how to find stuff that makes you feel powerful. Just because shit’s pretty good now, doesn’t mean we all can’t keep upping our badassery. (see: proenza schouler, balmain) Onward! Excelsior!

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#PearShapedProblems : training tops and running pants

Here’s what happens when I get dressed for bootcamp: I spend ten minutes trying to figure out which pair of black workout pants is tight enough to stay up during jumping jacks and such, thick enough to camouflage cellulite and sweat, but not so tight that my saggy double butt or lady bits are on full display.

 

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This chart is from YouBeauty, click on it for their butt-type specific exercises.

THEN, I put on whatever flowy top makes me feel least gross and goes down the longest.

THEN, I go to class and either my pants fall down the whole time, or my top flies up during burpees and mountain climbers and hip hikes.

The pants issue, I’ve figured out. I needed to 1. stop wearing Athelta Chaturangas and LuluLemon Wonder Unders to bootcamp, because both of them shits is designed for YOGA. Stretchy material, wide waistbands, basically designed to slip down and give you penguin crotch and muffin top if you dare to jog in place in them.

So I dug out my tub of workout clothes that are a size smaller, and (yippee!) some of those pants fit now. And most of them were intended for running and training, not yoga. So we’re good there. Also: don’t be afraid to wear something that feels “tight” because basically, if it feels “comfy” when you’re not working out, it’s going to fall down when you are. And nobody cares about your butt once the workout starts. Everyone’s busy either worrying about their own butts or trying not to quit and walk out in the middle of class. Just like you. (Want the full education on workout-pant types? I wrote about it here.)

Now the tops: that’s a little harder. You know I loathe clingy, roll-showing, muffin top maxing, tech tops. And I’d rather not wear a wife beater type tank top in public just yet. (mushy middle) So I basically have ONE TOP that really works for boot camp. The Athleta Breathe tank, which has a shit-ton of ruching and is really long, so it stays in place pretty well, but also has some distraction/camo action. Well, they don’t make that tank top anymore. So…sweet.

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Athleta Breathe Tank

What about bubble tops, Aimee?  Fuck bubble tops, that’s what. I’m a pear, so they balloon out at the one place I’m small – my waist, and also, because of my shape, they just slide up towards my narrowest part anyway. Also, I think they’re ugly. Unless you’re a super apple. Then, they’re probably your best option.

So I’ve been on the lookout for something that might work, and I sort of found something. It’s called the Sweat it Out top from Lucy. It’s sort of a straight cut, so it is snug-ish at the hip, but doesn’t cling anywhere else. So the cut is working in my favor. But it’s not perfect because the fabric is slippery. It’s better than a lot of tech fabrics because it’s thick (awesome) and seamless and doesn’t look cheap and tacky as fuck. But, it does slide up a little. I even made a point of wearing it with a more brushed cotton type of pant rather than a slippy slidy pair, and I still had to pull it down a fair amount. I will say it never rode all the way up, though. Just a few inches. (PS, they’re on sale now. Probably because you can’t tell the quality from the photograph.)

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Lucy Sweat it Out Tank

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I’ll keep my eyes open. And I might try some other kind of ruched top from Athleta like the Fastest Track or PR Tank 2 or Pure Tank. I don’t know. They look pretty tight-fitting. Might just have to suck it up and wear my Old Navy tank tops. They might not wick or anything, but at least they’re the right shape and they’re not slippery…(FYI, some of the shittier colors of the Fastest Track are on sale for as low as $18…)

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Athleta Fastest Track

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Athleta PR 2 Tank

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Athleta Pure Tank

 

 

 

Winter workout wear likes.

OK you guys. I forgot to tell you about a pair of Old Navy leggings that don’t suck. This is big, because they all suck. Unless you are skinny and have no cellulite. (Thin can wear cheap.) Even then, the quality is pretty suck-town. EXCEPT FOR THESE:

The Go Warm High Rise Compression Legging. They are neither super thick, nor super squeezy, despite their name. But they DO go up to the waist and the dark-on-dark stripe is pretty flattering, camouflage-y, and not see-through. I hate lined leggings, so these (plus leg warmers) are my winter walking pants. Also, they’re like $26. Boom.

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In other news: Lucy’s new stuff is pretty cute. They’ve stepped it up. Their jackets in particular are a little different. Avoid the crowd at Lulu, hit up Lucy, and you’ll probably have something that the rest of the studio sorority doesn’t have. I’m talking to you, twenty women I saw at the mall yesterday with LuluLemon bags…LuluLemmings.

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OK. I admit these photos I pulled from the Lucy website are not that mind-blowing. But if you’re by the store, swing in. They’re better in person.

I was also in Dick’s this weekend. And Nordstrom. And Athleta. And LuluLemon. (My husband got Lasik so I was killing a lot of time in the mall-type area near the Lasik office waiting to pick him up.)  Overall, my impression is this: every main stream fitness line has become more stylish. None of them are pathetic anymore. Nike has tons of cute, longer, more flattering cuts this year. Under Armor has better colors, new patterns, etc. Calia is still way too much product, but it’s all quite pretty. Lulu’s always good. Athleta and Lucy have caught up. Adidas, I’m sad to say, seems to be lagging way behind, though. (Except for the Stella McCartney and adidas originals stuff, of course. That shits always hot. Just their training clothes are lame.)

I have to not buy things for a bit, but if I were in buying mode this weekend, I would have bought these in a hot second.

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I still kind of need this sweatshirt. I’m still thinking about it two days after seeing it. If I win the powerball, I’ll go get it. 😉 Or if you win, send me one.

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Nike

I’d like to visit the world where this camo makes you disappear!

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Nike

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Under Armour

Um. Hello, Nick Cave soundsuits + Yayoi Kusama polka dots! I would love to look like a trippy muppet. Awesome!

 

 

 

 

End of year top ten 2015.

Hey Aimee, you got an end of year top ten list for us? It’s the end of the year. It’s list time. It’s what people do…

Sure, pretend person who asks me questions to prompt blog posts. Of course I can do that for you. Here you go…

PRETTY-SWEATY’S TOP TEN FAVORITE FITNESS THINGS 2015

10. FAVORITE WORKOUT PANTS: Athleta Chaturanga. Yes still. They’ll probably be knocked down a peg when I start really running again in 2016, because I doubt they’d stay up. But until then, the stretchy, never too tight, available in infinite lengths and colors and patterns, INCLUDING a new high waist version, are still my go-to. Because pants that never make me feel fat will never not be my favorites.

9. FAVORITE FITNESS TRACKER: UP2 by Jawbone. Best looking. User-friendly and nicely designed app.

8. FAVORITE PROTEIN BAR: Quest Bars, mother fucker! They taste like magic and are made of sparkles! Plus: fiber.

7. FAVORITE PROTEIN SHAKE: Sun Warrior. Chocolate flavor. It’s vegan, so it’s like you’re drinking a salad. (I tell myself.) Add spinach, psyllium husks, cocoa, a pinch of salt, and a little bit of stevia, and you’re good. It looks green, but it tastes like a Wendy’s frosty. Chocolate + Spinach works.

6. FAVORITE JOG BRA: Under Armour Armour Bra. I have faith that eventually I’ll find the Moving Comfort (honorable mention) bra for me, but it only took one trip to Sports Authority dressing room to find an Under Armor one. They’re color-coded for cup size, and they don’t have too many options, which is makes finding the right one for you quick and easy… If you know what size you are… Which I don’t because it changes every month. (Pregnancy should be considered a 2-3 year process for your body.) They have different impact ratings, but I don’t understand the point of anything that’s not rated for “Hi-Impact” (or why they don’t spell out “high”). Their H-I-G-H impact sports bra is called the Armour Bra. It’s well-engineered. Easy to get on and off (back clasps). And doesn’t cut into your armpit fat. In fact, it has special soft and stretchy bits around the armpits specifically so it doesn’t do that. VERY WELL DONE, UNDER ARMOUR! VERY WELL DONE.

5. FAVORITE WORKOUT: I still stand by a combo of boot camp and barre. Boot camp is basically the OG of HIIT. And any barre program will do. But I really like Suzanne Bowen’s Barre Amped series of DVDs as a lighter alternative to The Dailey Method. #yesiamstilloutofshape

4. FAVORITE FITNESS MAGAZINE: Experience Life. It’s put out by Lifetime Fitness, and it’s a healthy lifestyle magazine. A lot about nutrition, wellness, life balance, etc. It’s a good for when you get burnt out on Shape, Self, Womens’ Fitness, Oxygen, etc. It’s also great if you feel like you’re always swimming upstream while trying to live a healthy lifestyle. This magazine will make you feel like you’re not crazy, and not alone. (This is me: “Wait. People still eat pizza? Who? Who still eats pizza? …Wait. They still sell fat-free shit? People still buy fat-free shit? Where the fuck am I? Has nobody read anything in the last ten years? What is going on in the world???”) Also: you won’t be bombarded with fitness models and celebrities. It’s a safe space.

3. FAVORITE NEW(ISH) FITNESS LABEL: Olympia Sport. Strong, yet beautiful stuff. Goddess wear.

2. PRETTIEST WORKOUT PIECE: ALO Goddess Leggings. Who doesn’t want to look like an off-duty ballerina? Nobody. That’s who. And that’s why these leggings are just so…I don’t know…lovely.

1. FAVORITE GYM: The shittiest gym in town, whatever town I’m in. I like the cheapest, most down and dirty, simplest, nothing but machines, little shit hole of a gym available. I don’t like big gyms. I don’t like “fitness centers.” The bigger it is, the more of “a thing” it is to go there. If the gym has STAIRS and multiple FLOORS? I’m out. I don’t even like studios that offer more than one kind of class. And if people can watch your class while they’re working out? Forget it. I’m not paying to be someone else’s entertainment. I like to stay anonymous. I don’t want everybody all up in my shit. I just want to get in, do my thing, not talk to a single person, not feel intimidated, and get the fuck out. If the walls need painting, and the ceiling is leaking somewhere, that’s a good sign. That means there aren’t too many people paying too much money for too much stuff. I LOVE a shitty little gym.

 

P.S. Sorry/ Not Sorry for no links or pics in this post. I’m tired, I don’t feel like it, and I’ve got other shit to do. You understand, I’m sure. The beginning of the year kind of blows for everybody, right? Right. TTYL. Love, Aimee.