Pictured: Asics Running Jacket €50 Littlewoods, Sensitive Printed Tee €38 Marks and Spencers, Shock Absorber Sports bra €22 Littlewoods, Nike Regular Dri Fit Pant €40 Lifestyle Sports.
How many times have you heard the phrase New Year, New You already this year? It’s that time of year when we vow to make over our bodies through a new fitness regime and as most New Year’s resolutions include getting fit, I’ll share my tips on the fitness gear I’ve tried and tested to have you dressing right for your sweat fest.
In 2010 I took up running. I’m not a natural runner, in fact I’m super slow. Nor am I a naturally lean type who runs long distance with ease but through an outdoor Running for Couch Potatoes type course with Run with Tina, I got started.
The idea is to get you from 0 to 5km in eight weeks, with two classes a week and one session of homework. The class was great craic, running around Herbert Park coupled with strength exercises such as mastering The Plank and before we knew it, we were able to run for 30 minutes nonstop. Run with Tina offers classes all over Dublin, Cork and other areas and also has a Walking class.
From there, I went on to do a course with Forgetthegym.ie, which is the same idea as Run with Tina, with beginners and improvers running classes plus a Beachfit class, which is a combination of running, Pilates, and strengthening –with all classes taking place outdoors on the beach.
So, to actually take part in the classes, the first step was to buy a decent pair of runners. Both teachers recommended Elvery’s on Suffolk Street in Dublin where they look at how you run (in fact they video you) and advise on the appropriate footwear. I went along, got “tested” and bought a pair of Asics runners for €120, in actual fact an Asics pair for €90 were also appropriate.
Asics are by far my favourite runners and I’ve bought them year in year out – such a good running shoe. Look out for the trainer scrappage scheme at Life Style Sports where you can trade in your old Asics and get 25% off a new pair.
Next, I needed a sports bra. Experienced runners like my friend Orla, had lots of advice on this (read her Guest Blog on Running Essentials). The best thing, she says, is to “try a couple of them on and when you are in the dressing room, jump up and down, shake from side to side and tip over as if you were touching your toes. I know it sounds silly, but there is no point in trying it on thinking it is fine and then starting running and finding it isn’t great”.
The Adidas Adishe SIMIA – previously available in Lifestyle sports (it’s no longer there so try Ebay ) is a good one, but one of the best is the Shock Absorber brand (Littlewoods currently have them at €22).
Some people get away with a crop top worn as a sports bra but personally, as with normal bras, I’m all about the underwired support and Marks and Spencer’s have a fantastic own brand, cross back one (€25) which I’m currently using.
Branded sportswear is definitely a personal preference but I did venture to the Nike shop in Kildare Village where I picked up a light weight rain proof illuminous jacket, a pair of full length and 3/4 length Nike “dri fit” jogger tracksuit bottoms and a “technical” long sleeved fitted t-shirt – the ones that you wear in the winter under your t-shirt to keep you warm and absorb sweat.
You can also get the Nike dri fit range at Lifestyle Sports across the country (€32 for Dri-Fit tight tracksuit bottoms or €40 for normal Dri-Fit tracksuit bottoms).
TK Maxx is another place that can be good for discounted sports gear but again, it can be hit and miss and depends on what they have in stock on the day.
Although everything I’ve mentioned so far has been personally tried and tested, I am dying to try the Marks and Spencer’s new Sensitive© sports collection, which has leggings, crop tops, tops, shorts and swim togs in a light, Lycra, easy drying material and wait for it, a sun protection factor of 50 in all their garments! Prices start from €27.00 for the crop top and go up to €40 for a swimsuit.
For those on a budget, Penneys have some sports gear that’s cheap as chips though I cannot vouch for it on the “dri fit” front.
Have you any resolutions to keep fit in 2013 and have you any tips on what to wear?Tweet