How to Pick the Right Pair of Training Pants

Look good, feel great, break a sweat.

As tempting as it might be to roll out of bed and hit your morning workout in pajamas or bottom-of-the-hamper rags, you’re better off getting dressed to exercise, particularly from the waist down. You want enough room to move around in your training pants, because spending half of your workout adjusting them won’t improve your physical fitness. And if you’re the type who feels as good as you look, pants that are stylish and flattering may actually inspire you to hit the weights that much harder. Let’s go!

To Work Out in Style

Breathable, quick-drying polyester, with a slim fit and ankle zippers that allow them to be worn with boots. adidas

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Thick cotton sweats will keep you warm when it’s cooler outside, but if you tend to overheat while exerting yourself, lightweight polyester will keep you comfortable and it won’t wrinkle. Workout pants come in two popular styles and the benefits of each are less practical than fashionable: Joggers taper at the bottom and have elasticized ankles, while track pants fit like loose trousers all the way down.

Soft Outside, Warm Inside

Perfect for cooler days, these have an internal phone pocket on the right side, a brushed interior, and a straight-leg cut. Under Armour

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Cotton breathes and will stop sweat from dripping down to your knees. On the downside, natural fabrics can cause chafing, so a moisture-wicking mesh lining can protect you from thigh irritation while offering superior ventilation and breathability. Stretchy synthetic fabrics like spandex (with or without polyester) also prevent chafing, but they’re not breathable, so be prepared to sweat. (Luckily their water resistance won’t allow it to show.) An elastic waist or a drawstring will keep everything hanging just right.

Eco-Friendly Workout Wear

They’re made of 100 percent recycled polyester for a more pro-environment workout. adidas

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Be sure your gym pants have pockets if you need a place to store your keys and phone while your hands are occupied. As for color, white may look sharp and gray is classic, but basic black and dark blue require less frequent wash cycles.