On Trend: Stretching with the Times
By Caitlin Brown
It feels odd to write about anything non-essential within the context of a global pandemic. That being said, the environment we are living in has many of us looking for ways to feel good, relieve stress, and incorporate a little self-care into our daily routine. Whether it’s a relaxing meditation or yoga class, a good book that makes you go a bit deeper, a rich, delicious, scented beauty product promising a miracle, or the thrill of opening a long-awaited online purchase containing new garments, if it feels good, indulge yourself.
These boxes do not contain the usual threads from pre-Covid times. Rather, they are of the loose or elasticy/spandexy variety, offering comfort or a loose handshake, if you will, with soft, snug appeal. They might be PJs (2020’s version of haute couture), a new pair of leggings (with matching top, of course) from Lululemon or sourced from other favorites such as Electric and Rose (amazing tie-dye yoga gear designed by Venice Beach hippies) or Beyond Yoga. This is what I don for one of my streaming yoga classes: tanks, tops, fun sweatshirts, and cute matching sweatpants. (I hadn’t owned a pair of sweats since college, when life was so very different.)
So here we are, with workers adjusting to a hybrid 9 to 5 workweek while straddling home and office. Some are working from home for the rest of the year, some not, but all our lifestyles have changed dramatically. Many things that used to seem important now feel trivial for a lot of us. The basics — our families, friends, health, and overall well-being — trump all.
Well-being and communal self-care are what’s on trend now, and that’s unlikely to change anytime soon. What we put inside our bodies and onto our bodies generally follows a “safety-first” mantra. Comfort within and without is what’s in style. This isn’t an entirely new concept, but a trend that has been building momentum steadily since the launch of the whole foods/clean eating movement. Now it has crossed over to fashion in that the quality of the ingredients that we put on outside matters as much as what we put inside — cotton is having a moment.
Spandex is also in. This makes sense since many of us haven’t buttoned up a pair of pants, shorts, or a skirt for over five months. Spandex has stretched out alongside our new work-from-home lifestyles. The 9-5 worker can now sit comfortably on Zoom (who would’ve ever thought that Zoom would become a verb like Google?) wearing leggings and work-appropriate attire on top in front of the computer screen.
This dress code shift has translated onto the pages of fashion magazines, which are incorporating “Athleisure” (“casual, comfortable clothing designed to be suitable both for exercise and everyday wear…the kind of clothing that one might be able to wear at work, to the gym, and then out to dinner”) into the mainstream. The buzzword of the day is “hybrid.” Just as many kids are going to school in-person for only part of the week and home schooling on the computer for the other part, our clothing has become as equally interchangeable, and so has our skincare/makeup routine.
Although we miss the communal part of in-person gym classes, Zoom and other technologies have enabled us to participate in group workouts that fit into our schedule (pre-recorded classes) while saving on driving time. Many boutique studios are offering online trials that last anywhere from 14 to 30 days, so this is a great time to branch out and try something that you might not have otherwise.
Large gyms and smaller studios are all reinventing themselves, offering ways to stay safe while working out in the comfort of our homes. Some venues are offering smaller, in-person classes and Zooming them for those more comfortable staying home. Hybrid living is the new normal, so why not embrace it and make it fun, while staying healthy and safe?
Here are some different classes, most of which are offering free trials, to try on for size at home.
Taryn Toomey’s, The Class
For a full mind and body workout, this class promises to deliver. Live streamed classes seven days of the week. Offering a 14-day free trial.
Tracey Anderson Method:
Fronted by Gwyneth Paltrow’s favorite trainer — they continue to offer up her popular cardio dance and mat strength classes online. There’s a two-week free trial, then it’s $90 a month.
Fourteen-day trial. Stream it on smart TV.
A tailored workout designed for studios, but meticulously recreated for your living room, home gym, bedroom, park or anywhere you can take your phone or computer. PureBarre Go is only $29.99/month.
Workouts you can do anywhere. Join a live class from a top-rated studio for real-time instruction or start an on-demand workout class when it works with your schedule. Thousands of options with everything from bootcamp to virtual meditation are only a tap away. Access a library of free on-demand videos, book a class nearby, and livestream classes from around the world.
Book live and on-demand workouts: yoga, Pilates, barre, HIT, meditation classes and more from across the globe. Just type in a location and explore all the choices.
Great online resources for workout gear and the hybrid lifestyle: