Sweatsuits, matching sweat sets… whatever you like to call them, if there’s one thing for certain it’s that these cozy pieces have been firmly planted in our wardrobe as elevated yet relaxed essentials for rest days, workouts and everything in between.
If you’re anything like us (that being, that athleisure wear is now your go-to style), then you’re often looking for other sporty and relaxed pieces to fill the spaces in your wardrobe that a matching gym set can’t fill.
Enter sweatsuits. Whether they’re your go-to travel fit, your cozy day outfit choice or you’re old-school and like to pump through your workouts in pure comfort, sweatsuits offer a bit of something for everyone, and if we’re being real, they’re not ever going out of fashion.
What Is A Sweat Suit?
Sweatsuits, commonly known as sweat sets are athleisure pieces made up of a hoodie or sweatshirt and matching sweatpants. These matching sets will usually be made from a cotton blend and often a drawstring waist for a comfy, relaxed look.
We’re not being dramatic when we say the right sweat suit with a slouchy silhouette feels like a warm blanket wrapping around you. So if you’re anything like us and you’re on constant pursuit for coziness, a sweat suit will be the next thing you should invest in.
Let’s face it. There’s nothing new about a sweat suit, (not to be confused with a shell suit). Since the 80s, every decade has seen tracksuits trend - with each era making slight adaptations to fit the steez of the current market.
Today, a sweat suit tends to be made up of a hoodie or sweatshirt, with matching sweatpants, and these can range from slim-fit to oversized depending on how you like your clothes to fit, but the baggy options are definitely more popular for today’s fashion.
Crafted from soft brushed fabrics, comfortable cottons, and often featuring a fleece lining, sweatsuits, you guessed it, are going to keep you warm when you need it most. With ample space for movement, a comfy hoodie and matching joggers are what you reach for on days when comfort is your priority.
Benefits Of Working Out In A Sweatsuit
Ditch your leggings and crop tops, let’s look at the advantages of working out in a sweat suit.
Warm Up Correctly
We should all know by now that warming up is key to a good workout as it gets the blood pumping to your muscles and raises your body temperature. This increases your muscle flexibility and your joint’s range of motion so that you leave the gym injury-free, (hopefully) without fail. So if you want to get warmed up fast, wearing a sweat suit will help you out as the extra layer of warmth helps get your body warmed up before you move on to the big weights. That’s not to say you should be skipping steps on your warm-up, no no, completing a proper warm-up is essential here, we recommend warming up for around 5-10 minutes before your workout.Hop on the treadmill for 10 minutes or push out a few light reps in your sweats and hoodie and you’ll be breaking a sweat in no time.
We don’t really need to sell this one to you, if there’s one thing we’ve all figured out in our daily wardrobes, it’s that comfort is a priority. There’s a reason you may get home from work and take your tight jeans off to slip into something comfier… (like your cozy sweat sets).
Even a smart-casual dress sense doesn’t quite pave the way for comfort. We love the idea of working out in a comfy sweatsuit because when you feel the most comfortable, you perform your best. A comfy sweat suit leaves a lot of room for movement, with no pulling or snagging when as you rep out, and the flexibility to stretch and extend in any direction. Plus, a drawstring waist comes in handy so you can adjust your clothing to your perfect fit.
Sweatsuit on, weights up, eyes to the mirror, let’s lift.
The lines can be easily blurred between your rest day and workout uniform, and let’s face it, with how stylish matching sets are becoming, athletic wear no longer needs to be saved for just one occasion (kudos to the designers). As much as we love a matching gym set like our Vital collection pieces, form-fitting shorts and leggings aren’t every woman’s cup of tea, especially if you prefer the feel of something baggier or covered. Whereas, sweatsuits can be worn pretty much everywhere, dressed up and down if you have plans before or after the gym too, and in our humble opinion, they always look cool.
What Workouts Can I Do In A Sweatsuit?
Here’s our roundup of the best workouts you can do while wearing a sweat suit.
Flashback to the 80’s and 90’s, before seamless leggings and sweat-wicking technology was all the rage, you’d catch many women and men lifting weights in the gym wearing sweatpants. Yes, this offered a far comfier alternative to skin-hugging spandex, but you could also pinpoint this era of workout clothing as the first wave of activewear.
Beyond a nod to nostalgia, sweatsuits are effective clothing to wear during your weightlifting sessions as you’re not necessarily sweating as much as you would during cardio workouts, so you can keep your sweats on throughout your workout without overheating.
In addition to increasing the amount of oxygen delivered to your muscles, warming up your muscles also activates and improves the connections between your nerves and muscles, thus priming your mind-muscle connection and increasing your movement efficiency.
We told you wearing a sweat suit can help you warm up, so there’s no surprise that it makes sense to wear one for warmth during outdoor workouts. For instance if you enjoy running outdoors, while a pair of shorts and tank tops are suffice in the summer months, as the temperature drops you may struggle with figuring out what to wear for cold weather running.
Choose sweatsuits with fleece lining for extra warmth, and even consider layering the staple pieces of athleisurewear over your gym clothes for the coldest of days - remember, you can always take layers off! Kudos to you for not letting the temperature put you off.
Down Days/Recovery Sessions
We’ve mentioned before that sometimes you’re just not in the mood to wear a matching sports bra and leggings to work out. Let’s call these your down days, the days you still want to show up and get your workout done, but don’t want anyone to notice you.
We’ve all done it, put our comfiest sweat suit on, cap on, hood up and worked out without making eye contact with a single person. Sweatsuits are the perfect armour for these workouts. Alongside that, not every workout is intense, for your recovery sessions at home or in the gym, sometimes slipping into a sweat suit makes the most sense to keep things simple for your slower, R&R training days.
Our 3 Favorite Matching Sweat Suits For Women
We’ve said that sweat suits offer a little sprinkling of something for everyone, so we’ve rounded up our three favorite matching sweat sets in differing styles for you to choose from. Firstly we’ve got a fleece-lined sweat suit, for days you want that extra softness on your skin and the cozy vibes ramped up. Then, something many of you will find great to workout in, a slouchy cotton sweat suit, not too warm or restrictive to workout in but also comfy enough to chill in. Then we have a lightweight sweat suit option with a slightly more slim silhouette for those of you who aren’t fans of the super baggy look and like lighter feeling fabrics.
Fleece-Lined Sweat Suit
Our Training Fleece matching sets are our go-to range for pillow-soft comfort.
Thinking of gifting someone a cozy matching set for the colder months? This set will no doubt get you in their good books. Featuring an oversized silhouette, The Training Fleece sweat set has two iterations to choose from: an oversized sweatshirt or an oversized hoodie - both of which pair beautifully with the matching fleece-lined sweatpants. Get this sweat suit in a selection of muted and seasonal colours to suit your style. Perfect for rest days and cozy low-intensity workouts.
Cotton Sweat Suit
If you’re seeking pure 90’s enjoyment in the form of a super slouchy sweat set, look no further. The Rest Day Sweats tracksuit combines 2 of our athlete’s favorite items: the Rest Day Sweats Hoodie, and the Rest Day Sweats Joggers - a clean, versatile aesthetic ready for any scenario.
Crafted from heavy-weight fabrics, these sweatpants are fantastic to wear during warm-ups, as the cotton design makes them warm, yet breathable. Without a fleece lining, you can layer more underneath these sweats without overdoing it, making them our favorite cotton sweat suit to wear to the gym to work out in, and for your vital rest days.
Lightweight Sweat Suit
Fancy something a little more lightweight, maybe even slimmer-fitting? You’re going to love our Lifting Lightweight Joggers (regular fit). Designed to fit more like joggers did before the Y2K revival of oversized apparel, they offer a silhouette with a slimmer fit to highlight your leg gains and drawstring waistband for comfort.
Made from a lightweight cotton blend, this sweat suit is more lightweight than our other two options, making it perfect for lounging and working out in. Closer in style to a pair of leggings, with the high-waisted fit, the joggers can be styled with the matching Training Zip Hoodie which is a regular fit again, ideal for those of you who don’t want your clothes to swamp you. You can't go wrong with a black fit, so what are you waiting for?
Now you’ve found your perfect sweat suit, you may be thinking about revisiting your legging collection. Why not take a look at our find your fit article and discover exactly how you want your leggings to look, feel and fit so you can be confident at the checkout!