I love spotting fitness trends before they break but I also enjoy watching them play out. It's one of the best parts of my job and it's such an honor when companies invite me to view or test their product out before it hits stores. I'm a tough critic though...because your style and health matters to me. So here ya go! These are the game-changers...
(In no particular order except for how my frazzled brain spit them out)
* Affordable Activewear That Doesn't Look Like Activewear
Hallelujah! Lululemon, I love ya but I don't like spending my entire activewear allowance on you. Please welcome AEO Performance to the fitness apparel scene. Who? AEO = American Eagle's activewear line. I got ahold of some of their latest pieces and was blown away! Not only are they 1/2 the price of Lululemon gear but they're designed to blur the lines between workout and “hangout”, meaning you can wear the pieces for either. My favorite pieces are the “Peplum” skirted workout tanks, windbreaker-style jackets with lace see through panels and hipster-style workout tees with netted sleeves.
* Designer Activewear That Actually Wears Like Activewear
I'm sick of designer duds that aren't realistic for the gym. And so is Norma, as in Norma Kamali. That's why she created InteractiveActive, a collection of jaw-dropping sportswear that she designed with her own workouts in mind. Not like other high fashion designers who have spent more time and effort on the fashion side than constructing for real functionality.
Norma told me herself (yes, I actually got to meet her!) that she had no intention of designing the line to be too precious to throw in the washing machine or dryer. Because that's what she does. Norma said: "They're made to sweat in. Eventually your sweat breaks the fabric down. They're not meant to last forever." If only she knew that I hand wash, hang dry and organize by color every piece of activewear I own on special slim line hangers in my closet! I might be a princess but you don't have to be to sweat in InteractiveActive.
* Whites, Lights, Citrus & Sweats
It's crazy but I'm seeing LOTS OF WHITE! White for the holidays and for the New Year! Clean slate, if you will! And yes, white is typically a dangerous place to go for activewear because it's less forgiving the way it clings to fat and then yellow sweat stains tend to glow on it. But designers are somehow making it work on styles that are sexy and inspirational. Norma's white pieces are GORGE but may not be for everyone...
Stella McCartney for adidas has a range of white and citrus pieces that are more curve-friendly. There's an amazing write-up from London Fashion Week here.
Both Norma Kamali and Stella are paving the way by blowing out SWEATS! All kinds of 'em too. Cropped, sleeveless, long, loose, and even labeled!
Where there's white, there's always LIGHT. Reflectivity is common sense functional but it's also trending. From adidas "light-up" windbreakers to Norma's supplex "quotivation" hooded jackets (pictured below in light vs dark), this is one fit trend nighttime exercise lovers like me can rejoice in.
* More Mesh. More Power.
Mesh in sportswear isn't groundbreaking but the way it's now being used sure is. Up until recently I was accustomed to seeing mesh in fitness apparel as side paneling especially in areas prone to sweat. But activewear designers are taking it a step further, using more mesh--just because! The mesh being used in some cases is more luxurious and layer-able. For instance, a good number of Norma Kamali's InteractiveActive tops are nearly entirely mesh and look great worn over a simple tank or sports bra much like a cover-up.
The BodyRock Sport brand has also taken mesh to new levels. Their "power mesh" serves as support for an edgy (or dare I say punk) slashed legging look. No holes...just the illusion of them! I've already ordered a pair of the Elle Slashed Leggings for an upcoming photo shoot. Anxiously awaiting 'em!
* Loose & Revealing. Sexy for Sweaty.
I'm not a huge fan of buying workout clothes at fitness studios because I find them to be over-priced, over-branded and lacking in style. And who wants to be wearing the same thing as the studio's regulars anyway? Not me. Okay, I take that back. Spin studio Revolve NYC has these amazing Onzie tops with a loose fit and a revealing scoop back. They're perfect for a sweaty (but sexy) workout session because they don't cling to your sweat zones, as there's absolutely no fabric there! Yes, there's a Revolve logo on the front but it's a NICE logo, just like instructor Christianne Phillips' derriere'.
I'll instragram myself wearing mine the next time I go spinning! If you don't follow me on challenged, here's your chance!
* Snack Time Goes Gluten-Free
I can tell people are getting fed up with gluten-freeak-azoids! Just the other day I was challenged by the cashier girl at my favorite vegetarian to-go spot, all because I asked her to see the gluten-free menu. "For what reason have you gone gluten-free?" she demanded to know. She obviously doesn't read my blog (the answer lives here) and I wasn't about to get into it with her. She pointed at a tray of gluten-free pastries and cookies. Oh boy, why aren't there better (not as fattening) options for gluten-free girls with a sweet tooth?
Truth is, there ARE options. You just have to grocery shop for them. They're not easy to find in corner stores or small markets. But soon enough, my gluten-free friends, we will be in bar heaven because companies like Skinny Girl are validating our wheat-free needs. Check out the new Skinny Girl On-the-Go Gluten-Free Bars! I literally just went to my pantry to take a bite out of one. Mmm, Banana Oatmeal Dark Chocolate! It's 4.06am...don't judge. Taste testing happens 'round the clock 'round here!
Glutino Bars may not be as novel at Skinny Girl's, but they're delish. I stick the Wildberry Glutino Bars in my purse. Take that, Snickers!
Everyone snacks differently. Cereal, yogurt and breakfast type foods have always appealed to my snack-sense. So, naturally I fell in love with MixMyOwn.com soon after the company reached out to me about their make-your-own-muesli service.
MixMyOwn is a genius website that lets you create your very own muesli mix from the healthiest and most unique list of ingredients (i.e. goldenberries, freeze dried pomegranate seeds, roasted soybeans, bee pollen powder, spirulina powder, organic cacao, etc). If you’re gluten-free, even better! Just substitute wheat flakes with quinoa puffs (or a few other tasty options)! Add almond milk and you're all set with a protein rich snack to support your fitness routine. Worth mentioning is that you can save and name your mix. I recommend trying the MizzFIT Mix. I hear it's really good...wink wink!
I gave up gum when I went gluten-free because--guess what?--gluten's in there! Although I love that I gave up a disgusting habit (Real ladies don't chew like cows, I was once told in an etiquette class my mother forced me to attend at Saks Fifth Avenue), sometimes you just need the refreshing taste of flavorful gum! Look no further than Pur Gum. It's gluten free and the pomegranate flavor scored a perfect 10 with me!
* And Lastly, My Quarterly Box (A Shameless Fit Trend Plug)
As much as I like spotting and chasing trends, I also like creating them. I've been hard at work with the Quarterly Team putting together a f*ckin-ing amazing series of fitness-fashion boxes for you! And if you don't believe me, I'm going to Jewish guilt-trip you (I can say that because I'm half Jewish) and tell you that I've been working on this project since mid-summer.
Every quarter of your subscription you're going to receive a box of my favorite fitness trends that fall under a particular theme like *pack your gym bag, *get inspired to sweat, *rujevengate & restore. The contents of each box are part of my daily routine of Styling Up 2 Shape Up, and it's been so much fun getting my favorite companies involved. You're gonna die when you get them in the mail. Each one holds a special message from me--and I look forward to seeing how you interpret them and put your goodies to use. So help me break this trend and let's Style Up 2 Shape Up together! Check out my Quarterly Box and Sign Up HERE!