Friday, May 17, 2013

Fitness Fridays - New clothing purchases and discovering wiggle.com.au

Just to confirm, this is not a sponsored post and the clothes I am discussing are ones I bought myself.

When I was doing my PhD, I didn't have much income but I lived at home and also didn't do much besides study and work. On a Saturday, it was highly likely you'd find me in my PhD office for some of the day, but that I would then head out shopping afterwards. The shopping tended to be of the clothes variety, as distinct from the necessities and essentials variety. 

I find it ironic that now, with a greater income (but also greater expenses, it must be said) and theoretically more time, I very rarely go shopping. The flip side is that when I do go shopping, I seem to make the most of it.



Earlier this year, I decided I needed more exercise gear, and particularly more running gear. In theory, you can run in a basic t-shirt and shorts but it is much more enjoyable if you have fabric that doesn't stick, chafe, ride up, or gather sweat. Clothes with secure pockets are also more useful than you might think. My shorts and leggings have a pocket to fit keys, but on my long runs I carry dates (the natural equivalent to gels), and they need somewhere to sit before I eat them.


On my first shopping expedition, I bought the Adidas t-shirt pictured above, which has a small zip pocket in the back and fancy-pants fabric that feels nice and dries out quickly. I have a pink version of this top too, and they are my favourite t-shirts to run in.


I also bought the Puma t-shirt below, which has no pockets, but I fell in love with.


And, last but also not last, I bought a Lorna Jane top that I expected to like a lot but actually like only a bit.


The liking 'a bit' is largely due to the built-in sports bra, which I'd intended to remove but found to be firmly attached. The elastic around the bottom of the top also tends to ride up. In all, it is a top that works very well for cycling but not so much for running.


It does have a great pocket though.


If I'd stopped there, I think we could have called it a productive shopping trip that would see me through quite a few months of activity. However, I didn't stop.

I went online.


I have known about wiggle.co.uk for some time, but only started using the site this year. Originally an online cycling store, Wiggle now stocks everything from bike equipment to running clothes to water bottles to sports shoes to Nuun tablets. What is more, there is now an Australian offshoot, available at wiggle.com.au . The prices are so much less than in 'real' shops that you may alternate between joy at the lower cost, and despair at the years you paid full price.

The photo above captures what I bought in my second shopping hit, all ordered online and delivered promptly. I love both of the long-sleeved tops, and the new hat has a longer brim than my old running hat. The Nuun tablets were featured in my April In My Kitchen post, and also pictured in the above shot are running shorts, compression socks, and regular socks.

Think I stopped there? Not quite, I'm embarrassed to say.


My final purchase in this month-long shopping binge was the above top from No Meat Athlete, a site I have a lot of time for. The tank top is pocket-free, but has the added bonus of featuring a running carrot. It's not every day you get to wear a running carrot.

I think it is safe to say that I've reached the end of my clothes shopping now, and expect to have a lengthy break before the next bout of spending. I will be wearing the above for at least a few years, and quite possibly for 10 years if my previous track record is anything to go by.

I am delighted to have discovered an online option for exercise clothes, which I find more expensive than I'd like, but where quality really does make a difference. Whilst I don't usually buy clothes online (the few time I've tried haven't resulted in purchases I like), exercise gear tends to be more consistently sized and easier to judge from images than other sorts of clothes.

On the topic of actual exercise, I am quite pleased to have navigated the post-race danger zone after my half marathon last month. Previously, I have found my motivation for running to dip after organised events, and/or have gone on to injure myself soon after such events. After an easy month of training I'm feeling good, and am looking forward to a 12km fun run in a week.

What's your approach to clothes shopping - love, hate, frequent or occasional? 
And what about online shopping?

31 comments:

  1. omg such a dangerous site!! I just spent a good 1/2 hr drooling over things that I really shouldn't buy! And yes, cursing for paying full price all these years!

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    1. Oops, sorry!! It is one of my favourite online sites now :)

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  2. Online shopping - it is my weakness. I just bought a dress tonight!

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    1. I am envious of you buying dresses and liking them (although it would be dangerous too) - I've tried a couple of times and not liked what I picked.

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  3. Haha, I am the same way.. except I think the last time I bought clothes was over a year ago. ;) I like online shopping for gym clothes, too, and since I cycle nearly every day, I use them the most, too. I m kind of excited to move to the US because they have more of those online stores than Canada. :)

    I always find the strappy exercise clothes cute but totally not functional for biking. I hate putting on more sunscreen if my back is exposed so usually I save those for indoor classes. Sunburn is bad news. :(

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    1. I know what you mean about sunburn...most of my cycling is first thing in the morning so it isn't such an issue, but by 8am in Australian summer it's already possible for me to be burnt so my long runs mean suncream is essential.

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  4. I'm (slowly) getting into running, and it's starting to occur to me that I may need to invest in some good clothes for it too. Also, it'll be nice to hit the point where I can call 12k a "fun run", ha ha ha.

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    1. The "fun" but does generally go missing at least once, I'll admit! Nice clothes for running really do make a difference - have fun shopping if you make the decision to do so :)

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  5. I have a No Meat Athlete shirt as well and it is my favorite running shirt! Regardless of the fact that it has no pocket. :P

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    1. Yay! I saw someone in one on my half marathon (I wasn't wearing mine for that) and wanted to say something but was too self conscious. It is a nice thing to see though.

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  6. I used to live near Chapel St in South Yarra and would go clothes shopping every weekend. Now, I can't be bothered going to the shops other than groceries and household essentials, and I buy lots of clothes online - dangerous, as I can shop day or night. I don't generally buy shoes online though.

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    1. Sounds like a similar transition to me...and now I'm wondering if I'm about to start the slippery slope to unchecked online buying! It is a dangerous place to head, even if it seems cheaper to start with.

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  7. That certainly is a lot of fitness gear but I'm sure it won't sit at the bottom of the drawers being idle. My Arabella has the same tops from Lorna Jane - I hang them on the line every day! xx

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    1. Oh, funny! Hopefully one day she'll hang her own washing out too ;)

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  8. Wow, that's a lot of shopping. I would pay someone to shop for me. I'm so short, nothing fits, bust too big, bottom too flat - I get so depressed. I need a personal shopper and private alterations person. :)

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    1. I'm like that with most trousers. They just aren't made for me!

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  9. I think clothes shopping is like most things - if you do it often you know the shops and the sorts of clothes you want to find - whereas if you don't do it much you don't have a clue - I find myself mostly shopping for Sylvia's clothes rather than my own as she always seems to be outgrowing something though I am thankful for hand-me-downs. But I like to go into a shop and check out the clothes rather than doing it online - never trust that the size will be right for me.

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    1. For everything except exercise gear, I agree with you 100% :) I think I'd also find shopping for children's clothes far more fun than shopping for myself, but the cost would grate on me I suspect - as you say, they wear them for so short a period of time!

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    2. definitely more fun to shop for kids clothes but I get so used to them being so cute that I get a bit annoyed when they are dull - though I am glad if I don't spend much on jeans when Sylvia decides she will never wear them!

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  10. I used to love shopping but now I just want to get in and out of the shops as quickly as possible! I do like to shop online though... if I find a good online shop ;) I am going to take a look at this one, I find exercise gear easy to purchase online too ;)

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    1. It's quite scarily easy, isn't it?!

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  11. This is really a nice and really an amazing information regarding fashion ,You have shared.I really gathered a lot of ideas about fashion after read this blog.Thank you for sharing.

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  12. Actually I was just ranting in a lengthy fashion this morning about clothes shopping...actually all too long a rant to clog up your comment s section with now Kari ;-)

    Mr Chocolate did a half marathon this morning, so I'll be sure he doesn't dip in his motivation afterwards. I'll be watching :-)

    Online is good. So much more exciting getting a package delivered to the door rather than traipsing around the shops for hours.

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    1. Congratulations to Mr Chocolate! It sounds like he's becoming quite the athlete - tough mudder and now a half marathon, so close together! It's lucky you keep the nutrition side of things so well covered ;)

      I'd love to have heard the clothes shopping rant but will just sympathise generally in the absence of details!

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  13. How good are tights with secret key pockets?! I also have a veggie shirt hehe it is bugs bunny and it just says 'VEGETARIAN' and hes snacking on a massive carrot. <3

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  14. I sort of hate clothes shopping, and much prefer online. Thanks for pointing out wiggle.co.uk - I agree that exercise clothes are ridiculously expensive sometimes, and I will need some long sleeve shirts very soon.

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    1. I will admit to smiling at your comment, because in my mind Townsville rarely needs long sleeve shirts, but then I reminded myself that people outside of Australia probably view me oddly for wearing long sleeve shirts even now :-) I hope you find the site useful!

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  15. Oh my gosh, online shopping is so dangerous! I actually had to stop because it's too easy to spend a ton! Looks like you got some great finds though :)

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    1. I think I'll definitely have to keep some limits in place myself too :-)

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  16. Nicely written-Great information.Thanks for sharing it with us.Please also visit my tank tops page and let me know what you think.

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