New Years resolutions to start back up at the gym fell through, I was feeling lethargic, stressed and down about my appearance. It happens, no matter how cheery and bright our self esteem usually is, we’ll all go through periods (some more than others) where everything just feels drab, grey and boring. Having active friends has been inspiring (can you believe Rhian ran 11kms!) as well as enlightening. I took the plunge, renewed my gym membership at the YMCA, went out of my comfort zone and contacted Female For Life, an activewear label for women of all sizes, ages and stages hoping that they could help pull me out of my funk and maybe inspire you guys along with me.
Mel from Female For Life just got me straight away, we were both excited. After speaking on the phone for almost 2 hours about her range, her business, social media and life in general the #F4Lchallenge was born. Unlike most fitness blogs and articles where the focus is on Weightloss I wanted to instead focus on Feelings and Activity which is something I think is more important and often overlooked. Friendship and Support also plays a large part for me so I couldn’t do it on my own.
Mel was generous enough to gift Rhian, Monica, Stephanie and myself two outfits each to wear during our workouts and to review. She understood my message that all bodies, no matter their size, age or shape, deserve quality garments to maintain their active lifestyle. I honestly feel like I’ve made another friend in Mel, her own personal story of why she started Female For Life to begin with is inspiring and I feel so lucky to be collaborating on this project with her. As I approached Mel with the idea, I refused any form of monetary payment from her, all the reviews are our own and as stated we received the clothing and accessories as gifts.
Every fortnight over the next two months, the girls and I will be sharing our own personal stories, photographs, failures and triumphs with you. The girls email me their story and any photos or videos and I simply copy and paste it into the blog post, everything you read will be their own words in their voice. We’re all different in so many ways and I can’t wait to share them all with you. You can also follow our journey on twitter and instagram by using #F4LChallenge hashtag.
- Age: 30
- Location: Mildura VIC
- Occupation: Teacher
- Married: Yes
- Children: Yes, 1 Child
- Average Clothing Size: 8
- Height: 163cm
- Bust: 81cm
- Waist: 77cm
- Hip: 87cm
- Jillian Michaels Workout DVDs
I absolutely adore workout wear. Not only do I live in it when I’m running, but it’s also my clothing of choice when I’m home with my toddler or off running errands such as groceries, etc. When I discovered I was going to be reviewing Female For Life workout wear I was beyond exited- a new brand to get my hands on!
When I picked the parcel up from the post office it took all my strength not to open it there and then, I made myself wait until I was at home. Ripping open the package I discovered vibrant colours embellishing black garments. The tights I was most eager to try on, especially the ‘Beautiful Buttocks’ pair. The supplex fabric gives a firm fit and the electric blue trim is extremely flattering. The ‘Double Trouble’ tights were also flattering with a double pink and purple trim on the side, and the waistband sat at a comfortable level.
The ‘Getting Active’ top is a racerback style with an Deep Pink trim down the side. It’s one that I would still need to wear a sports bra with, but it’s good for gym workouts or light weights training. It’s not something I would pair with the Double Trouble tights as I’m not a fan of ‘matchy matchy’ workout wear, but they’d be great with a pair of running shorts.
Lastly, I tried on the ‘Bali Yoga‘ top. This is a loose fit and I definitely wouldn’t be wearing it for running or any other cardio sessions. I wasn’t sold on the design, especially the fabric tubes on the straps, but the fabric felt quite nice. Overall for me, the tights are a winner so far. Lets see how they go when I test drive them on a run! – Rhian (www.hummingbirdssong.com)
- Age: 26
- Location: Grose Vale NSW
- Occupation: SAHM
- Married: No
- Children: Yes, 1 Child
- Pregnant: 32 weeks
- Average Clothing Size: 10/12
- Height: 172cm
- Bust: 99cm
- Waist: 91cm
- Hip: 100cm
I was surprised by how comfortable the Beautiful Buttocks pants were and how nice they made my ass look, well to me they did! They looked really small at first so I didn’t think they’d fit but these are great because they don’t sag like others I know, they fit snuggly. I normally would have chosen a darker pink but the Light Pink Mel chose for me really compliments my skin tone, I think it makes me look even more tanned!
The Bali Yoga top is a great fit, wasn’t too tight even with my growing belly, it’s actually quite loose and comfortable, not as restrictive as some of my other tops. I really liked the fabric, it’s super soft and so light. The little coloured bands are a bit annoying when they twist around but I like how they add a pop of colour. The shape compliments my sports bras too. I’ve been wearing this while just hanging out it’s so comfy.
This Maternity top is so comfy I wear it out ot the shops, I don’t think it should be just seen as activewear but also as casual wear. I like the wide open neckline and how the white band breaks up the black and goes with everything I already own. It’s loose and comfortable over my belly, not restrictive at all and theres still room for my belly to grow. I’ve washed it once so far and it came out exactly the same which was nice.
I like that the top of the Culottes pants has extra fabric that folds up over my belly, I just flip it up and it holds my belly nicely, so comfy. I think it will be great for after the baby is born too. To be honest I’m not used to wearing flared pants but I am gettting used to thme because I find the top the pants sooo comfy. I don’t really notice how baggy they are against my calves, it just kind of feels like I’m wearing a skirt, they’re really quite pretty. I probably wouldn’t wear them to the gym or when on the bikes but I’ll wear them to Yoga or just out walking. – Monica
- Age: 23
- Location: Townsville, QLD
- Occupation: Student
- Married: No
- Children: No
- Average Clothing Size: 14/16
- Height: 175cm
- Bust: 100cm
- Waist: 82cm
- Hip: 107cm
On Thursday 22nd March I recieved my package from Female For Life. I got home, ripped open the bag and looked at all the goodies. I grabbed up the Sky Blue set and recorded this video for you all…
I went for a Skate down at the Strand as soon as I was finished I was feeling so energised and happy with the prospect of exercise. I’ve only ever done Zumba once but with the names of the garments I recieved (Running Riot, Love My Bum, Bali Yoga, Beautiful Buttocks) for some reason I had the strong urge to dance so I filled up my Female for Life water bottle, tucked my key into my wristband and off down to the Beach I went listening to my local dance radio station through my phone.
I have a booty so the main thing I wanted the clothes to do was for the shirt to not roll up to my waist and the pants to stay up when I bend and move while skating. We had SUCCESS!
I was impressed that I didnt feel saturated when I finished skating, its hard work up here in the the North – even at night. When I peeled them off it was fairly easy, I have since washed them and they maintained their original tiny shape ready to keep me sucked in for next time. I also received a Red Set of Bali Yoga and Beautiful Buttocks but you will have to wait till next week to hear all about those! – Stephanie
- Age: 26
- Location: Windsor, NSW
- Occupation: Blogger
- Married: Yes
- Children: Yes, 1 Child
- Average Clothing Size: 20/22
- Height: 170cm
- Bust: 125cm
- Waist: 108cm
- Hip: 138cm
As well as the soft, squeezable drink bottle Mel also sent us two sweat bands which have a zippered pounch for keys and change, perfect for the gym or when out for a run. I’m glad she sent two as Aidan claimed the other one, he likes to put his cars in it! We also got two travel lotion bottles, great for sunscreen or body wash on the go. A nail file, suggested activity card for workout inspiration and an information leaflet to tell us even more about her clothes.
This is me, no make up, no fancy hair, exactly like I would be when working out. As usual, no photoshopping, pale skin, lumps, bumps, bad regrowth and all. Going to the gym isn’t a beauty pagent, I don’t feel the need to cover up in a place that acutally encourages me to get real and sweat it out for my own good. As long as everyone wears quality deoderant I’m happy, I use Dove Clinical Protection in case you were wondering. As soon as my new gear arrived I headed down to Athletes Foot and invested in a new pair of shoes, if I was going to do this I was going to do it right. Looking after your feet is important, especially if you’re as heavy as I am. These New Balance shoes leave me feeling like I’m walking on clouds, I honestly wish I’d bought them sooner.
I really like these pants, so far all the girls have agreed that Beautiful Buttocks really do flaunt one of our bests assets. The only thing I’ve found is that with my rather large calves they tend to roll up under the knee. No one else has had this problem, I think it might also have something to do with more fabric being allocated to my ass so they rise up a little. I love the piping and the contours that the coloured patches create, I wear these all the time. The Bali Yoga top is soft and flowy, I like that it’s not restrictive over my belly and is long enough to cover it without constantly needing to pull it down. I still need to invest in a sports bra to it does look a little odd with my normal bra straps but honestly I couldn’t give a damn, I can’t see my back and from what I can see at the front, I like it.
The next set I received was gorgeous, the blue was soo me! I just think the Brazil Fitness pants are so much fun and so different to anything I already own. I was orginially sent them in Deep Pink with a Cover Me Up top in the same colour but unfortunately the top, even though I adored it and willed my chubby arms into it, the banding on the sleeves was just too tight. I have larger arms that most so it’s not the tops fault, I was so bummed because it made my tummy and boobs feel amazingly suported.
Mel didn’t have anything else in Deep Pink to send me so she let me keep the pink pants and sent this blue set out, how nice was that! I’ll be keeping a watchful eye out on the new designs arriving over the next couple of months to find a matching top. The Beautiful Wrap top I’m wearing with the blue trim is my go-to top at the moment, I just chuck it on and don’t have to worry because my bra straps are covered, the fabric is thicker but is very breathable and the drawstring detail is kind of cute. I know some of the other girls don’t like matchy matchy activewear but I do. Who knows, maybe as I acquire more colours I’ll make a rainbow of outfits.
Out of everything that people could potentially pick on me for regarding my weight, my problem area would have to be my thighs. I’ve mentally reached that point where I’ve said to myself “That’s not good enough, you need to work on that Danielle.” and I think it’s because it’s such a personal part of my body. As Stephanie explained in her video, when you first hold the pants up they look tiny, you convince yourself that there is no way you could ever get them on but then you do and they conform with your body and they feel like a second, more colourful skin. They hold me in, support me, stop chaffing and feel good on from start to finish. The clothes I’ve received are unlike any other sportwear I’ve ever owned and I know understand the value in investing in them. – Danielle
I know this was a massive post and really I should have broken it into two but I was just too damn excited to share it all with you. Next fortnight we’ll be sharing the things we do to keep ourselves active, show you where we go to burn off steam and “real” photos of us girls working out.