Sweat Salvation: 4 Must-Have Workout Items

Thursday, January 10, 2013

--By Hannah Foster

Even though they have the air conditioning on full blast, the gym is hotter than a Louisiana bayou on a sultry summer night. You're only five minutes into your warm-up and you're already sweating like a yeti on a hot day in Juarez. Okay, maybe that's an exaggeration. I know how the adage goes... and women don't "glisten" or "glow" or whatever else you want to call it. We sweat. Profusely, under the right conditions. We're just a little better at hiding it then our Y-chromosome carrying brethren. That being said, here are a few tips to make sure you continue the appearance of being of the fairer/ gentler sex, despite any temporary resemblance to yeti you may unfortunately experience.

First and foremost, drink a lot of water. I know this might sound counter-intuitive since you will then have more water available for sweat. But, in addition to regulating your body temperature, being well hydrated helps your body adapt to exercise in higher temperatures. Being well hydrated also keeps you from smelling like a yeti, even if you look like one, so drink up! Any store bought water or sports bev works, or you can bring your own reusable bottle.

Gaiam Tree of Life Stainless Steel Water Bottle

→ Buy the Gaiam Tree of Life Stainless Steel Water Bottle, $12.98, at gaiam.com.

Second, always take a towel for wiping down equipment and... well... yourself. Really, any small towel will work for this. Since I am usually wiping down equipment, I use mid to low quality hand towels that I randomly find at Target for like $1 each. But if you are spending most of your workout outside, in the pool, or doing aerobics, you may want something more technically suited for your workout. There are lots of options here, but a good general use option is the Cramer Stay Cool Small Towel. It has all the features of a normal terry towel, but is made of a patented material designed to wick water and sweat from the skin.

Cramer Stay Cool Small Towel

→ Buy the Cramer Stay Cool Small Towel, $13.23, at amazon.com.

Finally, choose the clothing you wear with care. There are two primary considerations that should come into play here: color and fabric. Cotton (at 100%) is actually considered a very heavy fabric in sporting circles, and it does a poor job of letting heat out unless and until it is soaked in water or sweat. If you are exercising outside this can be a major concern during the summer. If you are planning to be in the gym, it may mean simply mean you go with shorts instead of capris. Nike's Women's shorts are way cute: low rise, but with piping at the edge for that slightly retro look.

Nike Time Out Jersey Tempo Short

→ Buy the Nike Time Out Jersey Tempo Short, $24.99, at ladyfootlocker.com.

You should also take into consideration the color of clothing you choose. Again, the concerns of outside workout vs. gym workout are different. If you are inside you may want to avoid colors that show sweat the most. Very light and very dark colors (white, light yellow, black, dark blue) and patterns tend to show sweat the least; mid-range colors (heather grey, cornflower blue, that faded red t-shirt you've had since freshman year but can't seem to throw away) seem to show it the most. So choose lights, darks, and patterns and if you simply have to wear that watermelon cami, be sure to layer it over something. Old Navy is a great place for camis of any color, and you can get enough for an entire week of workouts without breaking the bank.

Old Navy Layering Cami

→ Buy the Old Navy Layering Cami, $8.50, at oldnavy.com.

This post originally appeared on August 6, 2007. It has since been updated.

Hannah Foster is a contributing writer for Stiletto Jungle. Hannah's current athletic pursuits include snowboarding, motocross, yoga, and avoiding the high school guys in the gym. She's played soccer, volleyball, and football competitively, loves swimming, hates running, and is certain being Captain of a 30 girl cheerleading squad gave her grey hair. Her degree is in biology/genetics.