Your gym outfit: what’s acceptable and what’s not

It's time to put away the tight leggings, gentlemen.

Your gym outfit: what’s acceptable and what’s not
India Gladstone

Gym gear: a subject that gets me almost as riled up as flip-flops. A subject that I could talk about for a long time, thanks to of the pure hideousness of some of the outfits I am subject to on a daily basis in my gym. I go to the gym early and even at 6.30 on a weekday morning I am astounded that the men in there think that it’s okay to give me a horrendously full display of everything that I just do not want to see. Gentlemen, it’s not rocket science. It’s time to treat your gym outfit as you would your everyday outfit, starting with what to avoid:


Leggings by themselves are are absolutely not okay for you to wear, no matter how streamlined you want to be for your workout. Why? First of all, you’re a gentleman. And gentlemen shouldn’t wear anything as tight as a pair of leggings – especially when they are going out into public. Unless you’re David Gandy, leggings aren’t flattering. They hug all the wrong places and are the fastest way to get incredibly uncomfortable.


Yes, these exist. There’s one particular person in my gym who wears a full all-in-one outfit in the shape of short shorts and a vest attached together, on a daily basis. The only way to describe it is as disturbing. I’ve actually seen this on more than one occasion which means that it’s doing the rounds in the gym world which can only be a bad thing. Again, I appreciate that you might not want to get chaffing and I appreciate that you want as little clothing on as possible to make your workout smoother but I promise you – I beg you – this is not the way to do it.

Short shorts

I don’t want to be sexist here, but this is another thing that really should be left to the ladies. Short shorts are doing you absolutely no favours, no matter how many ‘leg days’ you’ve done that week. You need to go for something more flattering, something that sits at least two inches above the knee and that absolutely doesn’t come anywhere close to revealing anything that no one should have to unexpectedly see.

A loose vest

There’s no need to wear a vest that you’ve ripped all the way down to the ribs just so you can show off your ‘pecks’/biceps/triceps. You can do better, gentlemen, and surely wearing a top that’s this loose is actually doing more damage than good because of how it gets between you and your dumbbells. A t-shirt will do and there’s never an excuse for any kind of vest – ever.

Dirty tracksuits

This is a sin that no gentleman should commit. Even if you’re just going for a casual jog, there’s still no need to completely sacrifice your style for the sake of comfort. The worst kind of tracksuit that you can wear at the gym is a really old, really stained, really baggy pair. Mark our words, gentlemen: no tracksuits.

What to wear instead:

Featured image: Men’s Heath, Main image: Nike

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