For some of us, just getting ourselves off the couch to go walk the dog for ten minutes can be enough of a challenge on a daily basis. Doing it while wearing the biggest, oldest, baggiest clothes you can find only makes it that much more difficult, or in some cases, impossible. Throughout the western world, the media is forever going on about how overweight people just need to get out there and be more active – as though it’s as easy as clicking your fingers. It isn’t. Far from it. But while they’re waving that magic wand, there is little in the way of solid and practical ways in which we can do it – or plus-size exercise clothing to wear while we are.
It’s something that’s always annoyed me enormously. They nag you to get out and exercise, but don’t provide you with clothes to exercise in. Instead, in every sports store across the country, you see slick, pretty gym pants and short sports tops which show off the wearer’s delightfully flat tummy. Even if these tiny things came in a size that fit me, I would never leave my house with my big tummy hanging out! Seriously, there isn’t enough money in the world…
If you’re like me, you find yourself some big t-shirts and some baggy leggings and put up with looking like a tent in the desert. You put away all thoughts of envy about those pretty colours and those top and bottom sets you see in the shops, and console yourself with the thought that when you get slim, you’ll be able to buy that kind of thing all the time.
But why should we have to wait? Why are we deprived of the opportunity to wear proper exercise clothing just because we’re bigger than the small amount of sizes ordinarily manufactured? If the statistics are to be believed, those of us with larger bodies are actually in the majority – so wouldn’t it make sense to manufacture clothes that fit us?
There are actually good, medical reasons for us to have proper clothing to exercise in. When you exercise, you sweat – and bigger people sweat more. So having clothes that quickly allow moisture to dry is essential for your well-being. Trying to get through an exercise class in a sweaty, dripping T is not fun! And in recent years a lot of research has been done into the unique physical advantages to wearing mild pressure suits during exercise which helps reduce muscle fatigue and a host of other benefits.
After quite a bit of research, I did find some online shops that supply proper exercise clothing for larger sizes. These collections are nowhere nears as comprehensive as the smaller sizes, but they are pretty good – and ABA even supplies pressure pants, which I have actually ordered myself (I’ll post again once I’ve tried them out).
Sells a selection of labels in larger sizes as well as smaller sizes. It sells internationally (outside the US) and also offers a good selection of sports bras – essential for any woman doing any kind of exercise.
This online store is all about plus size exercise clothing – which is fabulous. While the range isn’t enormous, there is certainly plenty to start with – and they offer a selection of pressure pants in larger sizes (called cellulite smoothers), which to my knowledge, you simply can’t get in stores. Also ship outside the US.
With a focus on all sorts of clothing for plus sizes, you can spend a lot of time browsing through this catalogue. There is a section for exercise gear, but the rest of it is rather nice as well. Not high couture, but you’d end up looking pretty good from this site.
Do you have any favourite stores?
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