Most of us do.
But not all guys realize…
The need for quality sportswear
(some just settle with a t-shirt and shorts every time)
The thing is…
Athletic gear is an investment
(just like a nice blazer or leather bag)
‘Cause whether you’re:
- Lifting weights
- Training for a marathon
- Hitting balls on the tennis court
Would you want to get muscle pains?
Or suffer from heatstroke?
Or see everyone outperform you?
So keep reading to learn how gym clothes can improve your workout (and help you reach your full potential).
This post is brought to you by Strongbody Apparel.
We all need exercise…but how many of us wear quality clothes to enhance performance?
If you buy the right stuff…it can do wonders for your next:
- Gym session
- 10K fun run
- Company sporting event
That’s what Strongbody offers (check out their latest collection of hi-tech athletic gear).
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Note: Offer will expire 30 days after the date of this post
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Item #1: Compression Clothing
A huge part of doing intense activities relies on circulation. Blood has to travel all over your body to give the muscles power.
That’s what compression clothing (sleeves, tights, socks, etc.) is for. It serves the dual purpose of helping transport blood/oxygen more efficiently – while being stylish athletic accessories.
These garments are typically made of spandex or Lycra. The fabrics improve circulation by compressing the soft tissues of your arms or legs at an angle.
But they don’t press against your body parts too much. They keep the underlying tissues firm enough while allowing you to move freely. If you end up feeling some tightness or discomfort – maybe you should get a bigger size (as with other clothing pieces).
Compression garments make a significant impact on leg hemodynamics – which can help track and field athletes increase their vertical jump height based on past studies. Compression sleeves have also been known to speed up the recovery of muscles (in the case of test subjects who wore them while doing bicep curls after a heavy workout).
Here are all the benefits of wearing compression clothes during exercise:
- Better circulation
- Increased endurance and speed of muscle recovery
- Decreased muscle vibration (which helps muscles tire out less quickly)
- Less swollenness of veins (which may cause muscle aches or fatigue)
- Lower blood lactate levels (as too much lactic acid can affect muscles)
- Lower risks of injury
- Psychological benefits (feeling secure, knowing you’ll be able to recover, etc.)
Maintaining heat balance is crucial. Especially when it comes to any activities outside an air-conditioned room.
Without it, the heat which is retained in the body will cause tissue temperatures to rise. And this can lead to:
- Physical stress
- Heatstroke/heat exhaustion
- Loss of intensity/strength
So in order for heat to leave your body while working out – you don’t just have to sweat. It’s important that your sweat can evaporate.
There’s one study that reveals how long-distance runners would face problems whether they wore a running dress (t-shirt and shorts) or were fully covered in regular clothes.
Both outfits can reduce evaporation. They inhibit your body’s ability to cool off…which means the core temperature goes higher. So the solution is wearing something with a low resistance to water vapor (but remember there’s a need to rehydrate yourself often – as the low vapor resistance also causes your body to lose more water).
The fabric has to effectively wick away moisture and allow it to dry up. A perfect example? Specialized long-sleeved running shirts which are ideally light-colored (since light colors can deflect sunlight better than dark colors).
I happen to know a great company – Strongbody Apparel – with its new Runner’s Choice Long Sleeve that comes in heather blue, green or gray. All of its high-performance athletic gear has a four-way stretch, moisture-wicking technology, good ventilation, and anti-bacterial properties.
I’ve worn a pair of Strongbody performance shorts for 3 years now…and I’ve washed it hundreds of times…but it’s still super functional and comfortable! So that kind of clothing will make your training more productive.
It also helps to wear a cap and/or jacket to protect the exposed parts of your body from potential weather conditions (like heavy rain or winds) when going for a jog or a hike.
#3: Drag Reducing Bodysuits
You see Olympic swimmers and speed skaters compete in bodysuits. As airtight as these look, and as much of hassle as they are to put on…there’s a reason they exist.
Their fabric technology has been proven to enhance your performance. It reduces drag (the force which athletes have to move against) to quite an extent. Clothing sponsors have often introduced these suits for the Winter Olympics over the years.
It was back in 2010 when speed skaters from China, Norway, and the US used the latest Nike Swift Skin. And research shows this bodysuit could lessen drag by as much as 4.5 N.
It’s a different scenario in the world of swimming. Swimsuits evolved from the use of wool and silk…to the controversial polyurethane-based types.
Polyurethane suits were considered a form of “techno-doping” (giving some swimmers an unfair edge over others). So they got banned in competitions. And past studies prove that it was the right decision – as a swimmer with that suit would experience 40% less hydrodynamic drag than one without it!
But of course, you can take full advantage of these bodysuits outside of official competitions. If they enable you to swim ten more laps than you can in normal swimwear…why not?
#4: Comfortable Fabric
For any other situation in a relaxed, casual setting…cotton clothes are fine.
But one issue about cotton is even though it can absorb water, it still retains water to the point that:
- You might not feel dry all day
- You might be bothered by hot spots or heat that doesn’t leave your skin
Many athletes do prefer synthetics over natural cotton (since synthetics feel more comfortable to them). So when researchers did an experiment on the effects of synthetic “cooling” fabric on indoor cyclists – the results were unsurprisingly pro-synthetics.
The test subjects rode stationary bicycles in an area that mimicked indoor cycling facilities. They’d go at their own pace and sweat like they were actually training. But they had no complaints with the “cooling” clothes they had worn. They enjoyed how light, thin, and comfortable the fabrics felt (due to the kind of weave and yarn used).
So comfort matters. You don’t want to be in the middle of a strenuous activity and be distracted by itchiness, chafing, or even sore nipples that kept rubbing against the shirt like sandpaper! So don’t underestimate the value of synthetics and other similar fabrics.
#5: “Aggressive” Colors
If clothes make the man, then in sports – the uniform makes the athlete.
And if you’re involved in martial arts or contact sports, you’ll want to consider the color of your uniform. Certain colors can make you or your team more aggressive. And appear more intimidating from the get-go.
In football, research points out that the color black (which signifies death or evil in most cultures) can increase the competitive attitude of a team. And spectators who aren’t football fans have been said to perceive the team in black as more intimidating during a match.
That was also the case with a study on 28 male combat fighters who wore either red or blue. They were all similar in size and age. But those wearing red reportedly had higher heart rates while fighting than those in blue. That didn’t mean the red guys would always win. But the color itself seemed to slightly level-up their aggressiveness.
Dress like a champion…and you’ll start to think and feel like a champion. That’s the first step to becoming a winner. So keep this idea of color in mind (as long as you don’t break any rules).