Busy moms know the importance of maximizing every minute that their kids are in school or with a babysitter. A lot of times we are fitting in a workout, a trip to the grocery store (alone, for goodness sake), and possibly a little me time having lunch with a girlfriend. Squeezing in a workout and a lunch date are equally important in my mind, yet difficult when it’s a race against the clock. What’s a girl to do? For me, that often means running from a workout straight to lunch. Being efficient with my kid-free time doesn’t allow the luxury of going home, showering, and getting dressed in street clothes before heading out. Plus, I like to shower in the evening when I have more time to relax and take my time.
I think it’s important to not look like you just came from the gym every moment of every day. We are all guilty of it once in a while but I kinda think the athleisure mindset is getting a little out of control. So much so that I made getting “dressed” a new year’s resolution three years in a row. I think I can finally cross it off my list for next year. I figured out some shortcuts to make the transition from a workout to a social situation in 15 minutes or less.
Keep in mind if you are the type of girl who gets super sweaty (and smelly) when you workout, these tips might not work for you. I typically don’t get hugely sweaty. If I’m scheduling lunch or a meeting after a workout I put some thought into the type of workout I’m doing beforehand. For example, playing tennis outdoor in 90 degree heat with a humidity index of 100 — probably not gonna transition to lunch without a shower. But after playing tennis in an indoor temperature-controlled facility I can easily transition to lunch. A meeting after a strength training session usually works well for me too. You know yourself best.
Tip #1: Use A Non-Creasing Hair Tie
Hair can be tough. This one takes the most amount of time for me. I usually workout with my hair in a ponytail. I try to be careful to use the right hair tie so I’m not left with a crease in my hair. I like teleties for this reason. They resemble an old school telephone cord and hold your hair back but don’t leave the tell-tale crease of a traditional hair tie. Ribbon ties also work well.
Tip #2: Use Dry Shampoo
Once my workout is finished and I’m in the locker room I spray dry shampoo in my hair and run a hairbrush through. This is my favorite dry shampoo. I have also used this one, and I really like it, but it’s more expensive. If I’m really on top of my game and I have extra time to spare, I’ll run a flat iron through my hair (especially the strands near my face which get kinky as my body temperature increases) or even a curling iron. But if I’m really in a pinch or if my hair is already curled, I’ll just run my fingers through my hair and smoothe out any kinks.
Tip #3: Invest in Quality Workout Wear
Luckily athleisure is widely available so you have plenty of options to choose from in this department. High quality workout gear can look just as good in the gym as it does outside of it. If I know I’m going to be running from a workout to a lunch date, I try and incorporate a simple base like stylish black leggings that work just as well in the gym as outside of it.
Tip #4: Change Your Top and/or Shoes
I like to change out of my workout tank and throw on a sweater or a new shirt. Alternatively, if you are really pressed for time, you can layer a jacket over your tank. A third option, and one of my faves, is to get out of your gym clothes completely and throw on a dress. One piece and voila, you look like a new person. If you don’t want to look like you just came from the gym, changing out of your running shoes is key. Incorporate a bootie or casual sneakers that would never make it to bootcamp.
Tip #5: Accessorize With Jewelry
I think jewelry is the key to not looking like you just came from the gym. I don’t know many people who workout in a necklace, earrings, and bracelets so adding these accessories in instantly transforms your look. Plus, they are super easy and quick to throw on. Just be careful to transport them in your bag carefully. There’s nothing worse than pulling your necklace out of your bag and discovering it is tangled in another piece of jewelry. Trust me, I’ve been there. It is super frustrating. I hope somebody invents a device to untangle necklaces.
Photography by Anna Meyer
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