If you recall my post about getting motivated to exercise, you’ll know that I love to use cute workout clothes as a reward for sticking with an exercise plan. This post is all about my 10 favorite places to score sweet workout gear. I am 5’3″ tall, weigh 130-140 lbs depending on the time of year, and am bottom heavy. My calves, thighs, and butt are definitely where I carry my weight. I’m smaller chested, but have arms that are proportional to my chunkier legs.
Whether this is your body type or not, I hope you will find this list helpful:
1. TJ Maxx, Marshall’s, and Nordstrom Rack ($)
Best for lots of brand names at a discount! I tend to find great running tights and capris for $20 and fun tanks for $10-$15 at Marshall’s and TJ Maxx. I seriously need to limit how often I shop at these stores because I always find tons of cute stuff at really reasonable prices. These are great places to buy socks, too! The only thing I haven’t had luck with are the shorts.
2. Target ($-$$)
Another reason to love target! I’ve purchased a couple of the Champion brand tank tops and my favorite long sleeve running pullover here. You can usually find nice things on the clearance rack, but full price can be justified if you spot something you really love. It still won’t break the bank. I bought some sports bras here awhile ago, but they stretched out and looked unflattering after a short time. I wasn’t crazy about the fit of the shorts or capris either.
3. Forever 21 ($)
I just recently discovered that F21 has activewear! I scored a cute highlighter yellow sports bra for $9. I’m willing to bet it won’t hold up very long, but their workout gear is a good option if you like to shop for stylish new pieces fairly often.
4. Victoria’s Secret ($$)
I’ve only bought workout clothes here during their semi-annual sale to keep cost down. I really like the PINK brand shorts; they have a nice wide waistband, fun colors, and flattering fit. They’re only $15 if you find a pair on sale! I haven’t tried on their sports bras, but a friend tells me they make your cleavage look fantastic. Makes sense since they specialize in lingerie, right?
5. Fabletics ($-$$)
Generally I would say you should definitely shop for workout clothes in person, not online. You can’t be sure that something will fit well until you try it on and it can be a pain in the rear to return clothing online. When I saw that Fabletics was offering a whole outfit for $29, I made an exception and signed up for the introductory offer. I stuck with Fabletics for two months. My first outfit consisted of a V-neck, awesome sports bra, and AMAZING capris. The next month I got a tank top with built in bra and the same fabulous capris in a different color. With Fabletics, you pay $59 per month and pick out a new outfit each time. If you don’t like it, you send it back and pick another. After two months, it didn’t seem worth it to me anymore because I wasn’t loving everything I ordered. Cancelling was a breeze, though. I think you should at least give the intro month a try!
6. Old Navy and The Gap ($-$$)
Old Navy is a bit less expensive, but selections are hit or miss. I have a couple of really cute running jackets that have lasted me a few seasons from there. Stuff at the Gap looks adorable, but I haven’t bought anything yet because it’s a little pricey and doesn’t suit my shape very well.
7. Nike Outlet ($-$$)
I love Nike sports bras. They’re cute and last forever! I sometimes find them at Sports Authority or Dick’s in the clearance section. I used to love the shorts, but now I realize that they look kindof puffy on the front. Nike tanks and pants are flattering, but not my favorite either.
8. Lorna Jane ($$$$)
I probably would have never shopped here, but Colby surprised me with a gift card! Let’s just say that $100 won’t even buy you two sports bras… I tried on at least a couple dozen things in the store and was only thrilled with a few unique pieces. The bright colors are stunning and I like that the sports bras have generous, removable padding that makes me look like I’ve had plastic surgery. For the price, I’m surprised that Lorna Jane clothing requires such heavy maintenance. The tags state that clothing must be soaked in salt water, then cold washed in a garment bag, then line dried and not allowed to lay wet. Yeah right, like I’m ever going to do all that! The return policy is ridiculous too. You aren’t allowed to return anything because of “changed your mind”, and exchanges are only allowed within 21 days if all tags are still attached and clothing has not been worn. That’s just too much of a gamble… Worth it only if you want your boobs to look super hot.
9. Lululemon ($$$)
This is the ultimate place to get activewear! It’s pricey, but not as expensive as Lorna Jane. The sports bras last and last and last (here’s my fav). The fabric is odor resistant. I’ve had two sports bras from Lulu for the past four years and they still fit great and look new. I don’t do anything special to wash my Lulu clothing. I just machine wash it with everything else and even throw most things in the dryer. I am in love with the running shorts (my favorite here) from Lulu and their bras. Tanks are great, too! I could just buy everything… Their bread and butter are the running tights and capris, but I don’t own a pair of those yet. I have to give spending $90 on workout pants some serious thought, especially since my $20 pants from Marshall’s have held up great and are comfortable to exercise in!
10. Mika Yoga ($$)
This is the place to buy hot yoga gear! Specifically, this is the place to buy booty shorts!! I love the fold-over shorts. They are short, but don’t roll up your butt or thighs and the waistband stays put without digging in. Even Lulu’s booty shorts can’t compete with these! BTW, these look promising, too. Some of the colors are on sale right now!