1. Keep yourself hydrated and always stretch. Do yourself a favor and drink water. A LOT OF IT. Personally, it really affects my endurance/stamina and how I feel the next day. I usually drink about half a liter before and after, but it also depends on your weight and body type. Also spend at least 10 minutes stretching before your workout. If you’ve watched the movie Zombieland, it’s a good idea to limber up before any strenuous activity. It loosens up your muscles, and reduces the chance of injuring or straining yourself. Additionally, if you’ve never been on a cardio routine before, it’s a good idea to give yourself a one-day break in between sessions. After you’ve become comfortable, you can increase the frequency to several times per week.
2. Wear a sports bra. This might seem obvious, but you wouldn’t believe how many women I’ve seen at the gym wearing a push-up bra on the treadmill. Regardless of your cup size, a sports bra should fit you snugly. If it doesn’t keep your babies in place, doesn’t it defeat the purpose of wearing one? I started off jogging with sports bras I bought when I was 40 pounds heavier than I am now, thinking it wouldn’t make a difference if they were a bit loose. Little did I know how wrong I was – my breasts were sore for a whole week after one run, and I developed slight bruising. Not cute. This is where quality really does matter, so don’t buy the cheap ones being sold in trendy fashion stores at the mall. I ended up buying two Nike Pro Victory Compression Bras – not only do they eliminate all bounce, but they come in so many colors! :D (I might buy a few more, lol.)
3. Choose comfort over fashion. Just because the models in fitness magazines wear skin-tight yoga pants, doesn’t mean you have to. The last thing you should be is self-conscious. Depending on the weather and how far I’m traveling to get home after my workout, I’ll either wear cycling shorts or sweatpants with a loose tanktop. Since the winter is approaching soon, I’ll be throwing on a thick pullover hoodie to keep me from getting sick. And although I may hate how I look in a ponytail, long hair must be worn up and kept out of the way. Personally, I’m a fan of the sweatpants from Gilly Hicks. They’re super soft and warm! Best of all, they’re available in skinny and super skinny pant leg styles. Which I prefer, since I’m short and have difficulty moving around in baggy pants.
4. Stylish Sneakers vs Traditional Sneakers. Lastly, a pair of quality shoes is a must. (Unfortunately, a pair of Chuck Taylors isn’t going to cut it.) Which was always a problem for me, since I hate the look of regular sneakers. They make me think of my awkward elementary and middle school days in gym class. Yuck. And I don’t think I could ever wear a classic pair without feeling frumpy or self-conscious that my feet look huge. Fortunately, athletic brands have been taking these concerns into account and are designing sleeker lines of footwear for women that are both practical and fashionable. Champion made the current pair I wear, and it meets all of my needs. :)
Hopefully, some of my information was useful – even if you already knew most of it beforehand. The bottom line is that you don’t have to sacrifice your style to stay healthy. Good luck, and stay fit! :D