How to Dress for an Athletic Body Type
So this topic is VERY near and dear to me, primarily because I grew up thinking my athletic body was not good enough, not skinny enough, not feminine enough. And the day I realized that NONE of that was true, was the day I decided I would start helping other people see the beauty in themselves too. Because after 5ish years of walking into fitting rooms and crying because nothing fit my broad ass shoulders, I decided some shit had to change. And obviously the clothes weren't going to change, so that just left me to change.
So how could I change my mindset from "my body isn't good enough to fit into these clothes" TO "these clothes should be good enough to fit MY body?" The answer to that is two-fold: the first step was internal work. I have practiced affirmations every day for years, telling myself I am beautiful until I finally believed it. I remind myself daily to recognize the beauty in my body, that my broad shoulders were made to one day lift the babies I want so badly out of their cribs so I could hold them, that my muscular build would serve the passion I have for training and fitness so I could impact lives. I first learned to appreciate my body, and THEN... my mindset towards clothing began to shift. And now that I have learned to value my body, NEVER do I believe I wasn't good enough for a piece of clothing. Instead of thinking "I am fat and ugly" when I try on something that doesn't look right, I simply tell myself, "this doesn't suit my body type." And that language shifted the pressure from my self worth, to an objective piece of clothing. HOW FREEING IS THAT???? My worth is NOT based on whether a dress makes my ass look flat or perky.
So now that I have accepted my athletic, curvy and strong body for what it is, I have picked up a few fashion tips that help me accentuate the parts of it I love the most, i.e., my broad shoulders, full chest and curvy booty. I have accepted the fact that I do not have a natural hourglass shape, as many women with athletic body types don't. Our hip bones tend to sit a little higher giving the illusion of a square waist. I now think of my body as a canvas that I get to create beautiful pictures with. Here are a few tips I have learned as I have been begun perfecting my art.
1. HIGH WAISTED FTW
I almost ALWAYS go for high waisted shorts, pants, skirts, and workout apparel. Since they hit just above my hips, they give an illusion of having a defined waist line. It's also easier to tuck in flowy blouses to high waisted pants, which is always a classy and feminine look. My favorite high waisted jeans are the "SIDNEY" style from topshop.com!
2. SHOW OFF THE SHOULDERS BABE
You worked damn hard for those mama! Plus, broad shoulders really accentuate the collar bone, which I find a very feminine and flattering look. When you wear sleeveless or strapless tops, you are showing off your hard work, and also have the opportunity to add highlighter or bronzer to the collar
bones for extra definition.
3. FABRIC MATTERS
Especially when choosing tight fitting clothing. A bodycon dress made of extremely thin nylon fabric is going to accentuate your curves in a much less flattering way than a thicker leather or suede bodycon dress would. Go for dresses with a stiffer fabric and a pre-cut hour glass shape. That's exactly what I did when buying the dress I wore to my birthday party, and it was incredibly flattering, and the seams of the dress essentially created a waist line for me. I got this dress from Pretty Little Thing! And I am linking the dress here.
4. TRUST YOUR GUT
I saved the most important tip for last. Do you know the feeling you get when you put on the PERFECT dress in the fitting room? That feeling where what you are wearing feels like an extension of you? That feeling should be your guide to EVERYTHING you buy! Love, do not buy something unless YOU are absolutely in love with the way it makes you feel. Clothes should be an extension of YOU!
All in all, my greatest wish is that ladies blessed with athletic and curvy body types will fall in love with themselves first, and then let the clothes they wear become an extension of their body bad-assery. You should never have to fit into your clothes. Your clothes should fit you. <3