It’s not necessary to have the latest style of leggings and tops for working out or the lightest and brightest shoes designed for your particular activity. However, I do believe those things add tremendously to our motivation. I don’t know about you, but I need all the motivation I can get.
That’s why I think it’s so worth it to spend a few dollars on nice athletic wear. Oh yeah, we’ve all got pit-stained Ts, decades-old sweatpants, and bargain basement sneakers we wear cleaning the garage or mowing the lawn. Those clothes are old, worn out, and clunky. And they’re not designed for athletic endeavors.
You wouldn’t use a hammer to stir a pot of spaghetti sauce, nor would you use a wooden spoon to hang a picture. Yet some of us think we can exercise efficiently in clothes and shoes that are meant for yard work or leisure. You can’t. You need the right equipment for the job you are doing. And you need the right clothing and gear for the type of exercise you’re engaging in.
NicoleDeBoom Skirt Sports Founder and CEO “When you look good, you feel good. And when you feel good, you perform even better.” This is the principle that guided Nicole DeBoom, founder and president of Skirt Sports, a women’s athletic wear design firm.
DeBoom was on a training run in 2003 and decided that women shouldn’t have to sacrifice femininity for performance. She created the first-ever women’s fitness skirt and raced to victory in the 2004 Ironman Wisconsin in her hand-sewn prototype. Nicole pioneered an entirely new product category, and Skirt Sports (www.skirtsports.com) has become a bustling business.
I asked Nicole to explain why dressing appropriately for exercise is important. She had some amazing and brilliant advice for us. (photo)
Why should women consider investing in good-quality athletic wear to work out? It’s just exercise and the clothes just get sweaty, right?
Athletic clothing is supposed to get sweaty, if you’re working hard enough! That’s why it’s very important to invest in performance clothing that is comfortable, will enhance your workout, and will hold up over time. The best sign of a great product is when I don’t think about it at all during my workout. That means there are no uncomfortable seams, no chafing issues, and the fabrics wick sweat like they should. On the flipside, if you don’t have high-quality performance clothing, you spend time and energy fussing with your outfit – pulling and twisting because it just doesn’t feel comfortable.
Why did you invest your time and money in building a business of women’s athletic wear?
Fitness is my passion. I’ve been an athlete since I was six years old on my local swim team, and I later went on to become a professional triathlete. When I was racing, I found that my performance was directly tied to my level of confidence, and my confidence could be influenced by what I decided to wear that day. I started Skirt Sports because I realized that this concept can apply to everyday life, and I felt that maybe I could help inspire women to work out just by creating something cute to wear.
When I had the idea for Skirt Sports, something inside me changed. It was like a spark ignited that day. I knew that I needed to pursue this idea. I also felt that this was the right time to invest in myself, take a chance and follow my heart.
What response have you received from women who wear your products?
My favorite reaction is when a woman says, “I could never wear that. I can’t find anything that fits me right and I know Skirt Sports won’t work.”
I say, “Why don’t you just try it on anyway? What could it hurt?”
Moments later, she glides out of the fitting room with a huge smile and exclaims, “I love it!” It’s literally that easy. We are providing a solution for so many women who have struggled to find fitness clothing that looks good and performs well, so when they discover Skirt Sports, they walk away feeling liberated.
What would you like to say to women who either regularly exercise, or are just starting to exercise.
First, no matter when you become an athlete in your life, you will start a journey during which you will become more in tune with your body than you ever imagined. This is a very empowering thing. My first piece of advice is to listen to your body. It will tell you when you are pushing too hard or not pushing hard enough.
If you want to guarantee that you will complete your intended workouts, schedule them into your week. You know yourself. If you’re a morning person, get up and do your workout. If you fall into the trap of saying, “I’ll do it later in the day,” your chances just dropped substantially.
Keep a log. If you know you have to be accountable, even to a simple piece of paper, you will be more likely to maintain consistency.
Switch it up. The key to longevity in life is diversity. Mix up your activities. This will also help your body be more well-rounded, increasing your fitness.
Enlist friends or a training group. If you are struggling from a lack of motivation or commitment, find a friend or group who will expect you to show up.
This isn’t a short fix; it’s a long-term life change. Incorporate fitness into your life in a way that you can sustain for the long-term. If your life is already too full, you will need to do some soul-searching to figure out what you can replace. It doesn’t make sense to cram another big initiative into an already overflowing life. Be realistic; it will help you make real change.
I never regret working out. When you’re struggling to get your foot out the door, just remember you may regret it if you skip your workout, but the chances of regretting if you actually do the workout are slim to none!
An excerpt from my forthcoming book, Look Good Now and Always; A do-it-yourself style makeover for busy women, due out on Nov. 18th on Amazon.com. Mark your calendar now, to go on-line and get your copy of this sure-to-be best-seller!
From Chapter 10: Athletic Endeavors (Copyright 2014)
Marian Rothschild is a certified personal image consultant serving the Denver and Boulder areas, speaker, and author of Look Good Now and Always. Marian teaches successful professionals to have polished presence and confident leadership skills with exquisite intention. Marian coaches on appearance, body language, and communication. Call for a free 20 min. consultation: 720-933-9247.
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