One of the things that made me wait so long to actually take the plunge into the natural hair world was the fact that I enjoyed working out! Even after getting the texturizer cut out, I was frustrated. If you were (are) like me as a new natural, you watched loads of videos about twist-outs, wash and gos, bantu-knots, and whatever else. Well, I thought my only option was to just suck it up and do my hair every night and take it out ever morning.
Let me start by saying, that nightly/daily routine was NOT maintainable for me. (It might work for you, in which case, I am envious.) But, when I say that I am lazy, I am not exaggerating. I don’t mind spending an hour or two on my hair, but not every day. So, for the first few months after my chop, I simply let me hair be a fro and detangled when it was wash day. That meant, I wasn’t maintaining my hair the way I needed to be: the edges were out, it was always tangled, and I had to add product everyday because moisture just seeped out.
The last thing that I found frustrating was that I felt completely alone in the natural hair world. I was the only one natural out of my fitness friends (or so I thought) and I found it really hard to find natural hair care blogs that catered to an athletic lifestyle! BUUUTTT! There is definitely a light at the end of this tunnel! Here are some of the things that I learned!
- Protective Styles are your friend! I currently choose a protective style and stick with it Monday through Friday/Saturday, then have fun on the weekends!
- Become a product junkie. Yes, this can be expensive. Yes, I was even warned by my stylist (when I got my chop). No, I still was not prepared. I (like you probably) thought Shea Moisture was the be-all, end-all to moisturizing natural hair. Well, it’s not. It literally took me months to figure that out. I finally bought a new cream, and shampoo and conditioner before finally feeling like I was getting a handle on my mane.
- Cover-up those locs! I do a lot of outdoors stuff in the summer, and Texas heat sure can suck some moisture out of your hair! If I’m running, biking, etc, I’ll put a bandana on my hair. If I have my hair styled, I’ll find products that claim to aid in UV protection and I’ll spend extra time moisturizing! Don’t underestimate the drying power of the summer sun ladies!
- Find like-minded people. This is last on the list, but it’s so important. It’s easy to feel as if you are doing something wrong when you don’t have that mental confirmation that there are other people in the world out there who workout in marley twists, or crochet braids. (I’m embarrassed to admit that I thought I’d ruin crochet braids if I tried to workout in them.)
Here are some of my favorite workout resources!
- Sporty Afros: This is the main blog that I refer to when I am having a athletic/hair care crisis. They provide breakdowns by hair style, type of workout, nutrition, etc!
- NaturallyGG: Their main focus isn’t fitness per say, but I love how they refer their hair care back to their lifestyle (and even the time of year).
- Green Beauty: I actually recently found this channel, thanks to a fellow blogger. It’s presented in a very scientific way, and so far, I’ve used it to aid in defining my hair type as a whole. There always recommendations on various treatments and for all of you DIYers, Green Beauty has so many homemade recipes for hair care!
I’m always on the lookout for more natural hair bloggers who focus on health and fitness. Who are your favorites?!