It’s a New Year and if you are like most of us you are excited (well that may be a bit extreme) and motivated to really take your health and wellness to the next level. One of the most common questions we get at The Wellness Center is, “What do I need to work out?”  Let’s take a look!

When it comes to most fitness your most important gear will be your shoes. Think about it! You don’t want to drive with bald tires do you? Then you wouldn’t want to do the same with your body, right?  There is no vehicle more important than your body, get it good tires! Your shoes can be a game changer when it comes to activities. When you buy the right shoes you can trust you are making the best investment for the greatest outcome.  Here are some shoe tips:

  • Buy shoes that fit! You won’t care if you saved money on a pair if they don’t fit well.
  • Buy shoes that feel good! Shoes are a lot like mattresses, they all feel good at first. If your shoes don’t feel good in the store, don’t buy them!
  • Buy shoes to move! Think about your movement. Will you be moving front to back like walking, jogging or running? Or are you planning to do some side to side movements like in Zumba® or kickboxing? Running shoes tend to have larger tread on the bottom and especially on the sides. For most indoor fitness classes like Zumba®, Kickboxing, circuits, etc. you should be looking for a cross training shoe that has a smoother appearance on the bottom and allows you to move freely.

When it comes to clothes there is really only one rule: if you feel good in it, wear it! If you are stressed out that something is too tight, too baggy, too short, too anything, don’t wear it. No one wants you to be uncomfortable and sometimes coming to a new class or gym can make you nervous. Take some stress away by wearing what feels good! Here are some other tips:

Wear layers. Most fitness facilities are kept cool. You may be chilly at first but it’s important to be able to lose a layer when you warm up. Just throw on your favorite sweatshirt or long sleeved shirt and you will be fine.

Wear what you can move in. Unless you are just going out for a walk you may find yourself in some interesting positions. Spinning®, for example, has you mostly seated with your arms down, but when it comes to stretching at the end of class you may be reaching overhead or folding down towards your feet. Wear clothes that you can move in and won’t have you feeling exposed or limited. Everyone is different, so try a few stretches at home and see if you feel comfortable in a lower neckline or shorts.

Wear your hair right! This may sound foolish but your hair can make or break a good workout. If you have longer hair and you leave it down in Yoga you may find yourself unable to see well while in a downward dog. Think about wearing your hair up. Have short hair or bangs that direct sweat right into your eyes? Think about wearing a headband or hat to keep your hair and sweat out of your face. In most activities, you will do well to keep your hair up and in a way that makes you feel comfortable. If it’s a ponytail, braid, hat or bandana that makes you happy, then do it!

The most important piece of gear isn’t something you can buy online or in stores – you already own it, and you just need to hone it: a good attitude.  If we have our mind set for success then chances are we will have a more pleasurable experience. Choose to look for the positives! You are growing and changing every day. Don’t get too focused on where you were or where you are going. Look for something small and encouraging today. You may just be one workout closer to where you want to be!

We can’t speak for all fitness facilities, but here at The Wellness Center we want you to feel comfortable and confident. The last thing you should worry about when coming to move and groove is what you are wearing, but we do want you to be safe. Wear clothes that aren’t restrictive or too heavy. Wear shoes that make your feet feel good and support your movements. Think about your hair and accessories and if they will inhibit your movements. Other than that, wear what you like! And just like fashion, don’t be afraid to try something new this year too like yoga, Pilates or tai chi! Those don’t require any shoes! As for other gear it’s always best to bring a towel and water to stay hydrated and cool too! No matter what your goals are this year, get yourself what you need to do the activities you want to do. Happy New Year, New Gear!