As a woman, I care a little bit about what I look like when I sweat. Just a little bit, because you know once the music is blaring and someone yells “3, 2, 1, Go!” the last thing you think about is how you look. We all know most guys just throw on a T-shirt and shorts, and they’re ready to turn on beast mode. Yet most ladies take on some sort of thought process involving: “Will this top stay if I go upside down? Can you see my thong? Does this match”?
Once we’ve all found our standard workout uniform, I know it’s hard to change or veer from the norm. My go-to workout gear used to be lululemon leggings or Nike shorts, a lululemon sports bra and a Reebok tank or T-shirt. However, now I’m open to much more variety.
I take on little projects for myself that will subsequently educate me or make me a better human. For instance, I will take a new route to work, make my own juices rather than buy the sugary mess at the store or bike to the market for a week. A few weeks ago, my project was to wear anything but my standard workout uniform. Yes, this may sound lame, but it definitely messes with your mental game.
After a week of doing this, I have a lot more to choose from in the closet, and my laundry has definitely piled up a little higher. I now don’t think as much about what I’m wearing. Instead, I just throw clothes in a bag. Much like a guy would do.
In conjunction with enhancing the variety of clothes I wear, I wanted to explore two new brands that intrigued me. The brands Life AsRx and Respect Your Universe (RYU) were so kind to answer any questions I threw their way, and each even sent me a few samples to try.
If you have been in the CrossFit community for longer than 30 days, then you have most likely heard of Life AsRx. However, RYU is relatively new to CrossFitters (and me) but definitely has a presence in the fitness community. Both of these brands stand for something greater than just clothing. They support the community and support athletes through sponsorships or ambassador programs.
Life AsRx was founded in 2008 with the mission to give back to a community that has given every person that works at Life AsRx so much. The mission of Life AsRx is “To keep the community strong, to keep it growing and to always live life as prescribed.”
RYU began amongst a small group of friends with one goal — to create the best martial-arts performance short that money could buy — completely based on the athlete’s needs. Although it originally gained popularity among mixed martial arts athletes, RYU caters to all those that seek an active lifestyle. “Our name represents the spirit of our clothes, the spirit we noted and admired as we studied athletes of all performances levels: respect for the bodies and respect for the communities, environment, and world in which they live and train in,” says Kofi Brown, chief marketing officer at Respect Your Universe.
Life AsRx’s target audience is obviously CrossFitters, but the company wants to reach all of those who believe in living life to its fullest. RYU’s target audience is men and women at every performance level, whether it’s the gym or yoga studio.
Life AsRx has a lot of sponsored athletes. One name you might recognize is the ‘People’s Champ’ Lindsey Valenzuela. It also sponsors staff of CrossFit HQ, first responders and numerous other class-act citizens. RYU has an ambassador program in which they partner with athletes, so that the athlete’s name and RYU go hand-in-hand. RYU carefully chooses ambassadors who live and breathe the values of its brand.
Both of these brands I feel are very unique and represent integrity when wearing their logos. As for Life AsRx, the brand itself is what makes it unique. It’s in the name. The ‘Stronger Than Yesterday’ design is exclusive to Life AsRx. The design speaks volumes about the character of the people associated with the company. As for all of the apparel and products at Respect Your Universe, they are comprised of up to 90 percent organic and recycle materials. The company utilizes the best yarn and fabric suppliers in the world. Respect Your Universe makes use of soy-based ink, which is environmentally more sustainable than synthetic inks. RYU takes great pride in the quality of its materials, from moisture control to weather durability.
If you are interested in either of the two brands, check out their websites. You can find out more information and purchase product on the site as well. I’m a big fan of both of these brands now. Without a doubt I will proudly wear a “Stronger Than Yesterday” shirt and eco-friendly leggings from RYU.
— Lindsey Mathews