opinion

COLUMN: Contemplating trends in my activewear



It’s so common, you wonder if you’re having déjà vu or even a brain aneurysm: A stereotypical college girl complains loudly in public about how she never works out, all while holding a Starbucks coffee, donning a designer bag on her arm and sporting a Lululemoon yoga outfit.

Your eyes almost bug out of your head when you mentally scream at her, “Then why are you wearing activewear?”

Though it’s annoying to the point of eye-rolling, there’s a simple solution to all those annoyed feels: stop 
caring so much.

I’ve been one of those haters of non-active activewear consumers. Originally, I thought the only people who could wear activewear as leisure clothing were athletes and jocks. I thought it was imperative normal people wear normal clothes when they’re not breaking a sweat.

The activewear trend has pissed off gym junkies and made big bucks for the sports wear industry. We are at war with one another, as we question whether it’s acceptable to wear activewear as fashion, even if we don’t use it for working out.

The Van Vuuren Bros released a YouTube video called “ACTIVEWEAR,” a playful music video mocking the sportswear trend, three weeks ago, and it went viral.

The video features women sporting colorful and fashionable leggings and sportsbras, but they’re doing normal activities one could do in any clothes. Words like, “there is no finish line,” “just buy it”, “work it like a sweat shop” and “do something” pop up on the video as faux slogans next to our favorite activewear logos.

But the best part is the 
lyrics:

“Activewear, activewear. Smoking on the street in my activewear.”

“Activewear, activewear. Literally doing nothing in my activewear.”

The tune catches your ear, and you start having mind-numbing flashbacks of all the times you’ve seen people in sports clothing while not playing sports.

In the description, the Van Vuuren Bros write, “A video for girls who wear activewear, to do not-active things.” The video is entirely centered on women, but I disagree that this trend applies exclusively to one gender.

I’ve seen plenty of guys wearing “Just Do It” shirts, even though they never “Just Do It” and work out. And we all know men have worn basketball shorts for almost a decade but don’t actually play the sport.

After watching the video, I continued my campaign against activewear and started thinking of made-up lyrics whenever I saw anyone in sportwear.

“Activewear, activewear. Sleeping on a Union couch in my activewear.”

“Activewear, activewear. Studying in Wells in my 
activewear.”

I started analyzing whether or not people were wearing sportswear for fashion, 
comfort or utility.

If they’re sweaty or currently running past me, the active wear is obviously being used for its purpose.

If someone whines about feeling hung-over while sporting Reebok, they probably didn’t just work out.

If they’re wearing the same Adidas jumpsuit Kim Kardashian donned a few weeks ago, they’re probably going for the look of it.

But even after all the snickering and mocking I, haunted by the activewear trance, suddenly found myself on the Adidas’ website.

And of course, the celebrity endorsements didn’t help. Kate Hudson always appears adorable and chic in her line of workout clothes at Fabletics. Rihanna, while also the face of Dior, looks killer in all her Puma ads. Don’t we all want to wear Adidas and, like the Chainsmokers’ song, “be like Kanye?”

“Yes,” I thought, “I really need a $30 rose gold brand name t-shirt. And how cute is that pastel runners jacket?” I started concocting ways I could pull off activewear as comfort wear, because if I’m being honest, I hate strenuous activity and avoid it at all costs.

Could I wear them with my Nikes? Would people suddenly know I was an activewear floozy if I mismatched brands? Should I not wear makeup to make it more convincing? Does any of this even matter?

Not really. You’re the consumer, it’s your money and you can wear whatever you want. Bring on all the haters. When you show pictures of yourself in your activewear to your kids in the future, you may cringe, but at least you know you wore what you wanted to wear.

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