Starting a work-out setup at home can be challenging as the workout itself. There are plenty of other things to do — meet your deadlines, finish the laundry, cook lunch or dinner, binge-watch your favorite Lord of the Rings movies in order, or sleep. Some days, you need the motivation to prioritize working out over these tasks.
Fortunately, the secret to boosting your motivation to work is already in your closet: your workout clothes.
Your favorite Nike running shoes, collection of Spyder ski pants for kids and adults, your favorite headband — yes, your workout clothes will not only improve your active performance; they can also get you started. Think of it this way: it’s similar to an actor putting on their costume or an athlete wearing their uniform.
When you put on your workout clothes, you’re getting into character and reminding yourself “It’s time to work out!”
Confidence and Feeling Good While You Work Out
Owning workout garments that you love promotes a healthier and more active lifestyle. When you feel good (because you look good), your mind shifts to a place where self-care matters. Creating a positive and mindful experience begins with what you see in the mirror every day.
The same applies to how you feel while wearing specific workout gear. For example, how many times have you worn a new pair of running shoes and felt an instant surge of confidence? Did that confidence lead to the best run ever? The act of dressing up like a runner and feeling like a pro runner gives you the psychological boost you need to run — even when you don’t feel like it.
If a graphic t-shirt makes you feel cute, that’s great. Graphic or statement t-shirts enable you to adopt a carefree or fun attitude when working out. Wearing a fun or motivational shirt adds more fun to your workout, as well as pushes you to work harder.
To ensure a comfortable and enjoyable workout, make sure your workout clothes are:
- The wrong shoes won’t just give you blisters; they’ll also discourage you from running. A sports bra that’s too tight might encourage you to give up. Instead of settling for uncomfortable workout clothes, choose comfortable shirts, shorts, and leggings.
- Improved range of motion. Choose breathable clothes. For better performance, work out inflexible clothing that allows your body to move freely.
- You don’t have to spend tons of money on great workout clothes. However, if you love spending more money on expensive clothes, go for durable workout gear. This ensures repetitive use. Repetitive use means more workout days!
Do Certain Clothes Motivate More than Others?
Yes and no.
Workout garments that guarantee or represent high performance inspire better performance in those who work out in them. There may be a functionality element at play. For instance, running shoes with better support or promote less chafing and rubbing guarantees more performance gains. However, the primary element that dictates performance is the person.
Clothes can create a placebo effect. This is when you think a piece of clothing will make you perform better. The belief results in better performance. For example, if you have a “lucky” t-shirt that when you wear it, your best workouts “happen,” you’re going to wear it. Perhaps, you may also feel as if you “owe” it to your clothes and to yourself to exert more effort since you’re wearing pricey apparel. You spent the money; therefore, you should do everything to see the results!
Motivate Yourself to Get Dressed for a Workout
Getting dressed for a home workout is only half the battle. If you’re already struggling with getting dressed in the morning, you’re bound to struggle more with getting dressed for a workout.
Make dressing up easy for you. For instance, if you exercise in the morning, go to sleep in your workout clothes instead of your cozy sweats. You are most likely eager to exercise when you wake up wearing them (if not too eager to change out of your workout clothes). On the other hand, if you work out at night, wear your workout gear as soon as you finish dinner or before you crash the bed for some pre-workout Netflix binge-watching. This way, you’re ready to go when it’s time to exercise. Also, you’re less likely to skip workout days because you’re already ready to exercise.
Whether you choose to buy high-performance workout gear or prefer your lucky t-shirt from high school, what’s important — from a motivational point-of-view — is that you’re wearing workout clothes that boost your confidence and comfort. Better confidence combined with comfort contributes to better workout performance and stronger motivation.