Fabletics is Here!

My Fabletics order arrived this week and I had a chance to inspect the items, wear them and wash them. I also took a picture to show you nice people. #nofilter

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I have to say, my initial impressions are positive. I like the colors, cut and material, and I think they look cute on. I would take a picture wearing the items but that would mean washing my hair and fixing myself up – doesn’t seem like that is going to happen today. Maybe another time.

Somebody (Kels from Blonder Side of Life) was wondering about sizing when I posted about this before. I ordered everything in a size Medium (8) and everything seems to fit really well so I would say the sizing is a bit more generous than some running apparel (I’m 5’8, usually wear a Medium or a size 8/10 in street clothes, but in running clothes sometimes have to go with a Large). Whatever size you normally wear in street clothes will probably work when ordering Fabletics.

I bought a bright pink top with a purple camo bra and purple tights – the purple is a bit on the blueberry side. The colors are very bright and fun in person. I wasn’t sure if the purple pants would be a good idea given the sweat issues we’ve discussed here before, but I’m glad to say that even after I sweated a lot, the pants didn’t show it at all.

After I got all sweaty in them, I washed them. The material seems to have softened up some but doesn’t look as if it will pill. The material is matte and kind of soft, looks like it should take a while to wear out.

I think the clothes are a great value for the price (I believe I paid about $35 for these three items) and I look forward to wearing them!

As always, this review is my personal opinion, I have not been compensated in any way to review or promote this brand.

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Hello Fabletics – Goodbye Stinky!

I have not been paid to review or promote any of the brands or products I mention in my blog.

One of the things that sucks about working out a lot is how stinky the workout clothes get. Stuff tends to last about 4 months of regular wear before it gets so funky that it has to be replaced. The clothes still look okay, but the instant the body starts to heat up, the stink returns.

There are special products you can wash your clothes with, but they seem to mostly be about masking the smell with perfumes. The clothes still smell. The reality is, unless you want to be that person at the gym who stinks before the workout even starts, you have to replace the workout clothing pretty frequently.

Usually I get mine at either Target or Marshall’s, because I don’t see the point of investing a lot of money in something that has to be replaced so often. Marshall’s is kind of hit or miss, though, and Target is the danger zone. You walk in to buy a $15 jog bra, you leave with $300 worth of stuff to redecorate your living room.

Danger. Zone.

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Anyway, when you go through a lot of workout clothes, and you know you will be replacing them all the time, you are always on the lookout for a good deal.

That’s why I am really excited about Fabletics. It’s a company co-founded by Kate Hudson (the actress – not a selling point, but kind of an interesting fact) that makes cute workout gear that is in approximately the same price range as the higher end Target stuff.

What sets them apart is their VIP program. If you sign up as a VIP you get a full workout outfit (bottoms and top) for as low as $25 when you first sign up. Your first order might be a bit more depending on the styles you choose – but still a great deal. My outfit was $35 for 3 pieces.

After the first order, Fabletics selects a new workout outfit for you on the 1st of each month for $49.95. You have until the 5th to review the order and either accept it, skip the month or select a different outfit.

If you don’t accept or skip, you end up with a $49.95 credit in your account that you can use later. They do not automatically send you anything, and you are not obligated to buy, but you do have to remember to go in and review, accept or skip or you will be charged for a $49.95 credit.

You can also cancel your membership at any time with no fee, and they have a one-time “I forgot to review my order” refund policy on the credit. So if you mess up, they work with you to fix it.

It seems like a good program, and the prices are really great. I just signed up and ordered today, so I haven’t received anything yet. When I do, I will review the quality and sizing of the products I receive. For now, what I am excited about is the price and the program itself. I really like the styles the company makes, and I do go through a lot of workout clothes. So it is a great way to make sure I am replacing stuff often, so I don’t stink up the gym.

Where do you get your workout clothes? What do you think of a program like this? Would you ever try it?

Open Letter to the Makers of Workout Pants

Y’all! This morning, I tried on my Under Armour compression pants I bought a while back and I was so annoyed. After I washed them I think they shrank or something. The rise seems lower than I remember, and people – it was not good. I did not want to spend my entire morning pulling the waist up so I just switched to a different pair.

But then I got thinking – whose bright idea was it to make low rise workout pants anyway? On what planet is that a good idea? Are the makers not aware that most workouts involve actual movement – like bouncing, bending and stretching?

Honestly, it makes me kind of mad. We spend a lot of money on this stuff, and I don’t think it is too much to ask for a pair of pants that will stay on.

So I decided it was time to do something about it. So here is an open letter to the makers of workout clothing, from the women who wear it:

Dear Sirs (and we know you are men…),

For years, women have suffered in silence. We have been subjected to atrocities and endured embarrassments beyond human comprehension – yet, we have not complained. We have accepted your crummy garments as our lot – the price of wearing Lycra.

No more. No more will we stand idly by while these horrors continue. Starting today, we rise up against inappropriate workout clothing and demand that those who have shackled us to their crappy pants for so long, be held accountable.

Or at least we demand that you please, for the love of all that is holy, stop making poorly designed, low rise workout pants out of crappy material.

Thousands of times a day, across North America and around the world, women in low rise workout pants show crack in yoga classes. We struggle to keep our pants up while running on streets and treadmills, due to the lack of drawstrings in your garments. Your pants give us muffin top.

This madness must end.

When designing garments, design them for actual women, including women whose body fat percentage permits menstruation. Hire a woman who exercises to be part of your design team, ask her what she needs, and actually listen to what she says.

In addition, we demand that your products be made from better materials. Last year, millions of women purchased overpriced Lululemon yoga pants, which were apparently made from transparent material. This became the source of much media attention when the pants were recalled and the company was sued. The CEO of the company then insulted the customers, implying that if they just would stop being fat, transparent pants would not be a problem.

Naturally, the CEO of this company is a man.

As if transparent pants and muffin tops weren’t enough, even pants which are not see through or in danger of falling off still leave too little to the imagination. Due to your use of flimsy or unfortunately colored material, we have for years been forced to inadvertently suffer from camel toe while working out. This is unhealthy for us, not to mention embarrassing.

Furthermore, there is an ongoing problem with many pants not colored black when we sweat “down there.” Other writers have expounded on this topic better than I can, so I will just say this: Surely in this day and age when we have the technology to access the entirety of the world’s knowledge base from a device that fits in our pockets, there surely must be a way to make pants from fabric that won’t appear as if we’ve peed our pants when we sweat.

In Closing

Pants makers of the world, we demand that you stop blaming us for the design flaws in your garments. Accept the fact that women of all shapes and sizes have the same right to work out and become more fit as have those lucky few whose body fat percentage is in the single digits. We should all be able to do so in clothing that is both functional and flattering.

And while you’re at it, see if there isn’t something you can do about the smell.

Sincerely,

A bunch of sweaty women who wear your products.

Well, how’d I do? What drives you crazy about your workout clothes?

Stormy Weather

I did it – I got out there and did my long run. I ran, even though it was windy. I ran, even though the skies were grey. I ran, even though it threatened rain. I ran, even though I could have skipped it. I ran, and it ended up being a great run. I even lucked out with the weather – there just a few sprinkles, and I even saw some blue sky peeking through.

I am glad I went when I did though. The weather forecast shows that the next wave of this storm will start coming through later in the afternoon. and by tonight, we will be dealing with this. Yuck!

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Here is today’s run according to MapMyRun:
Distance: 6.06mi, time: 01:03:22, pace: 10:27min/mi, speed: 5.74mi/h.
http://mapmyrun.com/workout/396610045

That’s the farthest I’ve run since I got hurt, and makes me feel like being ready for the Snohomish River Run is definitely not going to be a problem. I didn’t push the pace at all today, so I think that I might even be able to get it done in under an hour. That would be pretty cool.

I got to break in the new running clothes I bought yesterday too, and was pretty happy with them. Kept me dry and comfortable but not too warm. I really like my new soft-shell jacket. It is from Mondetta, a Canadian company, and looks really sharp. I wish you could see it in this picture a little better – it has a really cool reflective detail on the sleeve. And yes, that is my Hokies cap. Virginia Tech represent!

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I mentioned the weather wasn’t too bad while I was out, but there was plenty of evidence of the storm front we’ve been dealing with. September is going out with a bang!

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Eat and Run Mom Guide to Running in the Rain

Tomorrow I will be running in this:

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But as my aunt reminded me on Facebook, there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes. Or at least the wrong clothes. I have a 10k race in 4 weeks, so skipping out on this run is not really an option. And besides, it’s only September 28. If I start skipping out on things because of rain now, then I will be trapped inside until March – and that’s if Spring comes early. So I gotta get out there. Rain or no rain, I am doing this thing.

Fortunately, having lived an active life in Seattle for most of my years means I know a few things about how to stay happy and comfortable in bad weather.

The main thing to remember is that rain is not the enemy. Wind and cold combined with rain can be your enemies, however. If nothing else, they’ll all conspire to make you miserable. So you need to dress appropriately. Look for clothing that cuts the wind, without adding too much warmth. You will only be cold for a few minutes at the beginning of your workout anyway. Your body warms itself up pretty quickly, so what you are looking for is to stay as dry as possible, and to keep wetness away from your skin. You want to avoid chills and chafing. So avoid cotton, look for wicking fabrics just as you would during hot weather. Synthetic fabrics are usually best.

For me, the ideal rain gear includes a pair of long tights with a slightly fuzzy inner layer (such as the Under Armour cold gear brand), a lightweight long sleeve top for fall type weather, or a heavier top when it gets colder, and an outer layer jacket that cuts wind and is water resistant. I say water resistant, NOT waterproof, because your own heat and sweat should be able to escape. The worst ski jacket I ever had was one that was waterproof – I sweat a lot, so waterproof meant all that water couldn’t get out. After about an hour I would be wet all the way to the skin – in skiing, this is a downright dangerous situation. Not a very comfortable situation for running either.

Protecting your hands and feet is also important because fingers and toes can get cold. Personally, I prefer to wear wool socks, but no gloves unless it’s really cold. What works best for me is a long sleeved short with a hole for the thumb. If hands are cold at the beginning of the run, then I tuck them inside, and slowly let them poke out as I warm up. If I get really warm, I push the sleeves up. Obviously this wouldn’t work in Minnesota, but it works here where it’s not so cold.

Headgear is another important consideration. I like a hat with a bill – baseball type caps are good – because it keeps rain out of my eyes and off most of my face. Rain on the face is kind of annoying, plus I wear glasses most days and they create a visibility issue, so a little protection in that area goes a long way towards keeping me happy. Stocking caps don’t really keep the rain off, and for the type of weather we typically get in Seattle, they are too warm. Anything too warm just has to be discarded after a couple of miles anyway.

While we are on the topic of discarding your clothes, the last “rule” of dressing for Seattle type rain is to dress in layers. As I said, you warm up as you go along, so you have to plan to unzip or remove things along the way.

The final thing you need on a rainy day run is a positive attitude. The hardest part is just getting out the door – as always, the first mile is the hardest. If you can just get geared up and going you will probably find yourself happy to be outside even if the weather isn’t so nice.