Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Q: How Much Laundry Do You Do?

And I am not talking about separating out your lights and your darks. I am talking about washing your workout clothes!

Last year I upped my volume and number of workouts per week by, well, enough to notice that I was doing a LOT more laundry for workout clothes than usual.

Now let's look at the number of workouts I do currently to the number of (current season) workout clothes that I own to swim, bike, and run.

3 swims per week
2 Jammers
Unlimited number of towels

4 rides a week
Two pairs of bib shorts
two cycling jerseys
lots of cycling socks, but mostly I ride barefoot
A one piece tri suit (which can be used most weekends when its warm)

5 runs a week
3 pairs thorlo running socks (I don't run in anything else!)
2 pairs under shorts
2 pairs running shorts
3 running jerseys

Now for certain workouts, such as brick workouts, there is a blend of running and cycling clothing, so there is some overlap.

Now what about the reuse factor? Do you reuse certain workout clothes? For me, I wash the towel and jammers after every use. If it is an easy 60 min ride and its not terribly warm out, then I will reuse the shorts and jersey. It doesn't matter what kind of run I do, as they are usually 45 mins or longer, EVERYTHING gets washed after one use. Weekend workout attire? No question, WASHED after one use, since its been used for HOURS.

There is something satisfying putting on clean workout clothes before every workout. Guess it gets you started on the right foot? (sorry, pun intended!)

Now let's talk detergent. Do you know how freaking expensive name brand laundry detergent is these days? EXPENSIVE! I finally gave up and bought the store brand generic stuff. I have noticed NO difference whatsoever. I believe that the active ingredients between generics and name brands have to be the same but the non-active ingredients can be different? Simple! Buy non scented generic detergent since they are going to become YOUR scent within 30 mins of a workout anyways.

I have noticed no issues with the generic brand eating my clothes. Heck, I have had some of the same workout clothes for almost three seasons that are CONSTANTLY (1-2x a week) washed and dried in a dryer and are still in good condition.

So all in all, I am guessing that I prolly do 1-2 big loads of workout clothes each week and will mix in stuff with my normal dark loads when I need a certain item for a certain workout.

I guess I could buy more workout clothes? But they would still need to be washed. Space is an issue for me, so I am sticking with my routine.

What about you?


  1. I wash everything after I wear it - I never wear something twice - I'm too stinky. I just rinse my swimsuit, though.

    I used THE cheapest detergent I can find and I can't tell the difference at all.

  2. Let's see .... there's my wife and I working out regularly, my oldest working out semi-regularly, and my youngest getting involved occasionally. Yep, plenty of laundry to go around. Ducking around a rack of drying athletic gear is just a normal situation here.

  3. Hah! Great post. Jennifer and I both go through workout clothes like crazy, so the washer is going a lot of the time. I like your style of the amount of clothes vs. washing. More clothes is just more things to get dirty before you do laundry. Detergent is pretty pricey!!!

  4. Wow you do a lot of laundry! We try and limit it to a once a week activity and generally 3 loads (occasionally 4).

    I honestly have never washed my jammer - at least not during pool season. Once I get into OWS season, I'll have separate pool and OWS suits. I use the same towel for a week and throw it in on the weekend.

    For biking, shorts usually last at least two rides as long as they are short/easy rides, but I wash jerseys after every ride. In the summer, I'll usually hand wash my shorts after each ride and then dry them on the front porch.

    Running is totally a wear once and wash sport. Nothing gets reworn.

    Regular detergent is all we use. So far, I haven't had any issues with it being hard on any clothes.

  5. I go through a loooottttt of wko clothes! The only time something might be worn twice is if it's winter and my spandex are probably just fine. :) Other than that, I prefer not to risk putting on anything salty. (!!)

    In terms of laundry detergent... I hear you! That stuff is expensive. Which is why I buy it at Costco! Lifting that 5 gallon tub counts as strength training, right?

  6. That is A LOT of laundry!! I actually have accumulated enough workout clothes throughout the years that I can workout for an entire week wearing different things (except my swimming suit). So, I do all my laundry on Sundays (it's the cheapest day to do laundry)! I think I would go insane if I had to do laundry 2 times a week!

  7. Hmm, retract that first statement. Swim suit gets rinsed and dried in the centrifuge-type-deal for a couple swims before washing it.

  8. Everything gets washed after each use. I have 3 jammers and a bunch of tri shorts and running shorts. I usually run in normal people running clothes - not tri gear.

    Now with Annie doing Tri the laundry has taken on a life of it's own. We do a shit-ton of laundry - well Annie does (-:

  9. Bro
    you dont even want to know what we have going on here for laundry:)


  10. I guess I'll just be the dirty one by saying that I will often wear the same cycling and running shorts twice before laundering them. I don't sweat much at all in the places that they cover. My jammer gets rinsed after every pool workout, but only machine-washed once every 6 months. I don't have any special jerseys for running or biking, so I just wear T-shirts. These do get washed every every use.

  11. i re-wear *some* things in the winter (outer layers). everything gets 1 use in otherwise.

    you must be using these towels for more than drying off? my shower towel gets reused for at least a week...

    i have allergies and sensitive skin... so i have to use the hypo-allergenic, no dyes, no perfumes, etc detergent.

  12. Luckly, everything, except for the bike, I have enough clothes to cover the week. As for the bike, I have 2 bibs, one I love, one I deal with when the good bib isnt clean, I will never ride on a dirty bib, something about a clean bib just makes me feel better on the bike.

    I have a family member that works for Dial, so I have an unlimited supply of Purex, its nice.

  13. i usually rewear my clothes, unless its really hot or its hot yoga. but i usually use my clothes at least 2 times......maybe sometimes 3. hahhahah
    im the stinky kid on the block! hahha

  14. My wife got sick and tired of my smelly workout clothes and some didn't get the stink out after the first wash. She found some Era line or something made just for sports laundry and it seems to get all the funk out.

  15. I feel pretty dirty after reading all that... I wash my towels and that's about it. I'll probably wash my cycling gear about once every 2 weeks (only when it is completely covered in salt and gu that has leaked out of the "empty" packages). I wash running clothes about once every 4 wears. I've never washed the drag suit I swim in.

    I'm kind of a hippie in that regard I guess. I also don't wear deodorant (and I don't smell). I just shower everyday and use lotion.

    For me it's just not worth it to put on something clean knowing that it's going to get soaked in sweat. Especially when I'm putting in 2 workouts a day...

    My work/weekend clothes are always clean!

  16. I dont do laundry, that's the wifes job.

    My clothes magically re-appear clean.

  17. LOL at JP. I agree with Kevin on everything EXCEPT two things. We do use name brand detergent... heather likes the smell AND we use coupons... so it is close to the generic cost.

    I don't have BO... at all. I will rewear my running shorts 2 times. Thats it though. If the run is over 13.1 they go in the wash pile.

    I fear my tri stuff will get worn up from the washing machine (that crap is expensive) so I try not to wash it that much... what I try to do is do a brick workout and end in the pool ;) HAHA.

    And I don't do the laundry. Heather does it all (thank god). She wears more workout crap than I do though, so its mostly hers anyway.

  18. Answer: Too much. But also, I DO wear some stuff twice, more in teh winter than the summer though. If it passes the smell test, I wear it usually because I am usually alone anyway. I try to spiff up some if I am training with someone.


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