What Fitness Gear Do I Need To Stay Active? Ask MR PORTER
Let us guess: you have already broken your new year resolution to work out more. If so, we are here, via various requests sent to us on social media, to give you a figurative kick up the backside and explain what you need to achieve your fitness goals in 2021. Want to know the answer to a different conundrum? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on social media and we’ll solve your questions – or we’ll rope in one of the world’s foremost fashion brains to help.
What fitness gear do I need to keep active in 2021?
To answer such an important, timely question, we spoke to an experienced fitness expert – Mr Damian Soong, the CEO and co-founder of Form Nutrition, a plant-based nutrition brand – who also gave us a little insight into his workout routine. We also elicited some in-house thoughts from once-keen (now somewhat reluctant) runner Mr Chris Elvidge, our Marketing Editor.
“I managed to get some kettle bells before lockdown and started working out at home,” says Mr Soong, reflecting on his changing habits since lockdown. “I’m a big cyclist, I go out on my bike a lot – recently that’s turned into Peloton and Zwift. I’m big into walking, too. I’ll do half an hour around the park in the morning before I’ve looked at my phone. The Salomon winter technical shoe is great for that, and useful when I go skiing.
“Running is something I’ve done for a long time. I like Hoka One One and On Cloud for shoes. They have a good range to suit most running styles. The coolest running brand for me is Satisfy – that stuff is beautiful. I’m also a big fan of Tracksmith.
“You need to invest in things that are functional and feel comfortable. Seams that don’t chafe, clothes that fit correctly, and shoes that have sufficient space for your foot to move while running. Get a gait check to understand your running style and get the right pair.
“In this weather, a nice pair of running gloves is a really good investment. I also like to run in the rain; it can be very cleansing and meditative. You need a good, lightweight, windproof, waterproof jacket.
“For everyday gym stuff I really like Reigning Champ – technical fabrics which are really well cut and look good. I don’t want to wear just an old pair of sweats in the gym. At the higher end, if you want to make an edgy statement, I like Rick Owens. What’s important for gym clothing is comfort. Unless you’re getting really serious, you don’t need to bother with anything too technical.
“Also, as you get older, you need to take care of your body. I used to get a massage every week. A foam roller is good, a resistance band for warming up, and a Theragun before and after a workout.”
Mr Elvidge acknowledges that he isn’t as active as he once was, nor is he an expert like Mr Soong, but he still has some good ideas on what makes the ideal kit to get a man going. “In my younger, fitter days, my running wardrobe was made up entirely of Tracksmith’s Van Cortlandt mesh shorts and T-shirts,” he says. “The lightweight mesh doesn’t chafe, making it great for longer distances, and the old-school athletic design really looks the part when you’re on the starting line of a race. It’s a bit of a bold look when you’re just plodding around the local park, though, and the shorts show quite a lot of leg.
“Recently, I’ve switched to something a bit more demure: 2XU compression tights and a longer short over the top, and an AeroLoft quilted gilet from Nike Running that I wear over a long-sleeved T-shirt. Oh, and a Nike Running cap, to hide the horrendous state of my sweaty red face. As for shoes, I have always been, and I expect always will be, an Asics Kayano guy.”
Illustration by Mr Slowboy